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Drip Doesn’t Have a Landing Page Builder – Why?Drip isn’t just severely lacking in email templates compared to AWeber. It doesn’t have a landing page builder, either. I can (almost) understand the logic there – if you’re using Drip, there’s a good chance you’ve got an e-commerce site set up that could, theoretically, handle that for you. Still, it’s an odd choice, particularly when almost every other EMS on the market offers this functionality. AWeber’s landing page builder is pretty good, and there are over 40 modern landing page templates to help you get started. Drip does have some things going for it. For one thing, its split testing tool is fantastic. It’s not the absolute best on the market, but given that it lets you test up to five variations of either the subject line or your email content, it’s got to be up there with my favorite split testing tools. Still, that’s not to say AWeber’s split testing tool isn’t any good. Drip might let you test more variations, but AWeber’s tool lets you split test everything in one go while Drip limits you to testing either the subject line or email content in each test. And, I’m going to say it again – AWeber has over 600+ email templates. While some of them look a little dated, the vast majority are modern, slick, and super easy to edit. Drip only has 35+, and four of those are basic column layouts. Sure, they’re modern, but the sheer difference in options means this round has to go to AWeber.
Ease of Use
Both Are Great for Beginners, But Drip Is a Lot More ModernThis was a tough fight, because I found both Drip and AWeber pretty easy to use. However, Drip came out ahead thanks to its fantastic email editor. Sitting somewhere between a drag-and-drop and block-based editor, Drip’s email editor is super intuitive. You can edit the subject line, create sub-templates for email headers, and preview for mobile all within the editor. Sure, it’s quite simple compared to some other EMS on the market, but it’s great for beginners who don’t need anything super fancy. AWeber’s editor isn’t bad either. Far from it – it offers more email elements than Drip does and a lot more customization. However, AWeber’s email editor is pretty dated. You can’t dynamically preview your email like you can in Drip’s editor – you’ll need to go to a different page. The lack of dynamic elements makes this editor feel like it’s stuck in the noughties.
Drip Is Surprisingly Strict About Affiliate MarketingI won’t lie to you – I can’t neatly sum up AWeber vs. Drip’s deliverability in a tidy percentage. Deliverability just doesn’t work that way. While EMS can implement features to help improve your deliverability, which I’ll cover shortly, there are a ton of other factors these platforms can’t control. Be sure to bookmark this breakdown of how to REALLY boost your deliverability if you want to know the full story. But in short, when I look at deliverability, I look at four main factors: DKIM authentication, spam policies, affiliate marketing policies, and whether dedicated IP addresses are available. DKIM authentication verifies your identity to email providers with a chunk of code that your subscribers don’t see in your email. It’s the email equivalent of handing your ID to a club bouncer. The chunk of code says you own the domain you’re sending from, which means the bouncer on the email gate sends your message to the recipient’s inbox instead of to spam. Both AWeber and Drip have DKIM authentication, although Drip uses a slightly different system that’s based on DKIM. They also both have guides to help you get this set up. So far, so good. Both also have pretty decent spam policies and will terminate your account if you have a high rate of spam complaints or other issues. However, Drip takes this one step further. Before I could send my first email, Drip’s customer support team asked for information about my business, what I’d be selling, and screenshots of previous email marketing campaigns. I suspect this is because I had to give them a website address to sign up, but the test email I signed up with didn’t match that address – so they wanted to verify that I wasn’t going to use Drip for spam. Meanwhile, AWeber let me use the platform straight away without any additional checks. In addition, Drip is decently strict about affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing can have higher rates of spam complaints, so many EMS flat-out ban this. While AWeber simply asks that you have consent to send affiliate emails and that the affiliate programs you use conform to their guidelines, Drip will place your account under additional monitoring. Finally, Drip offers dedicated IP addresses, while AWeber doesn’t. Sure, you have to be sending over 12 million emails a month to qualify for one – and, at that point, I’d argue you’d be better off with a custom email hosting service anyway – but this round still goes to Drip.
Reporting and Analytics
AWeber’s Analytics Are Clear, Actionable, and ConciseThis section was another tough fight. Honestly, I like both AWeber and Drip’s reporting dashboards. They both have simple layouts that are easy to read and understand, allow you to filter analytics by date and time period, and export your reports as a CSV file. Drip also lets you track your revenue and website analytics alongside your email campaigns, which makes it a great one-stop shop for e-commerce businesses. However, I gave AWeber the win here because it offers more data points. You can see which channels new subscribers are signing up through, which makes AWeber fantastic for optimizing your marketing stream. You can even see where in the world your subscribers are opening your emails and which contacts you’ve followed up with – something Drip doesn’t offer.
AWeber Isn’t Just Better Value – Its Pricing Structure Is SimplerFirst things first – both AWeber and Drip are similarly priced on the surface. Paid plans start at roughly the same price for 500 contacts when you pay per month – for Drip and for AWeber – although AWeber does offer a discount if you pay annually. AWeber also offers a free account for up to 500 subscribers, which will get you a bunch of basic features to get you started with email marketing. On the other hand, Drip only offers a 14-day free trial, which, honestly, doesn’t feel like long enough to get to grips with the service.
Here’s What You Get for FreeAWeber’s free plan is one of the best on the market. You can send up to 3,000 emails a month to up to 500 subscribers, which is pretty generous. Plus you get all of the basic features you need, including over 600 email templates, a stock image library, basic segmentation, and 24/7 support. By comparison, Drip has a 14-day free trial. This will let you try out all of Drip’s features – like e-commerce workflows, its fantastic split testing tool, and its 100+ integrations – but, as I said, I just don’t feel like this gives you enough time to try out the service.
Here’s What You Get If You PayBoth Drip and AWeber are similarly priced, but AWeber gives you more for your money. Not only does it do the basics well, but more advanced reporting and the landing page builder set it apart from Drip. Plus you’ll get 24/7 support via live chat, email, or over the phone – Drip only offers support Monday through Friday. Drip’s pricing isn’t bad if you want a dedicated e-commerce solution. Compared to some of the bigger EMS platforms, its price is pretty reasonable – just bear in mind that its features (such as the 45+ automation templates) are all designed with e-commerce in mind. However, Drip has a weird pricing structure. Once you reach 30,000 contacts, Drip will start limiting how many emails you can send each month. AWeber, on the other hand, offers unlimited email sends regardless of how many contacts you have – which is how almost every other EMS works. Here’s a quick look at AWeber vs. Drip’s pricing structure:
|Email limit||Unlimited until 30,000, afterward, email limit of 12x contact cap||Unlimited|
|Landing page builder||No||Yes, drag-and-drop with 40+ templates|
|Integrations||50+, including Zapier||700+, including Zapier|
|Customer support||Email, live chat (on plans with over 5,000 contacts) – Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm CT||24/7 live chat, email, and phone support|