An All-in-One Email Marketing Tool – But Is It Overkill?
GetResponse started out over 15 years ago as your basic email marketing tool. It grew and grew, and now has hundreds of thousands of customers in 183 countries.
GetResponse has become a platform designed for experienced email marketers and larger teams. It has a complete suite of tools for marketers, and some of the most advanced email automation features I’ve come across.
However, if you’re running a small business or a blog, it might be more than you really need.
The good news is that GetResponse has a great 30-day free trial so you can try it out without many limitations. But before you do that, let me save you some time. I’ll show you the biggest strengths and weaknesses of GetResponse in this review.
A Laundry List of Marketing Features
If I made a list of potential features an email marketing tool could have, GetResponse would probably have them all.
For this review, I’d like to focus on GetResponse’s standout features, so I won’t go over the more common ones, like the ability to create sign-up forms and surveys, and the 99% email deliverability.
Simple, But Advanced Email Marketing Automation Workflows
You can create standard autoresponders with GetResponse, but the advanced automation features are probably more interesting to you.
Of all the workflow creators I’ve tried, GetResponse’s workflow creator is arguably the most flexible and powerful.
The editor itself is very smooth, allowing you to drag around any element listed on the right side of the screen. You can also connect any element to as many other elements as you like.
While that flexibility can lead to some messy-looking workflows, it gives you more control than most other workflow builders do.
In terms of elements, you can choose from conditions, actions, and filters.
The conditions are quick checks about whether a subscriber meets certain criteria. For example:
- Is on a specific list
- Clicks a link
- Opens an email
- Visited a landing page
- Has a tag assigned to them
- Abandoned a cart
Actions are… well, actions you can take when a condition is or is not met. These include:
- Sending an email
- Adding or removing them to or from a list
- Waiting (a time delay before another action)
- Sending subscribers to the start of another workflow
- Adding subscribers to a stage in a CRM pipeline
Finally, filters are what you use to choose a sub-group of people who have made it to a certain point of a workflow, based on some sort of personal information (e.g., if they spent a certain amount, or have reached a certain CRM stage).
Four Types of A/B Testing
You can choose from over 40 automation templates to save you time if you don’t want to start from scratch.
Split-testing is built into GetResponse’s email creation process.
When you’re creating a new draft, you can toggle on A/B testing and choose to test any of these:
- Subject line
- From field
- Delivery time
It’s as easy as A/B testing gets, but note that you can’t do any multivariate testing.
Over 120 Integrations
GetResponse currently has under 130 integrations. Some of those (like Vine) are outdated, but still listed.
Of those integrations, 34 are supported by GetResponse, while the others are supported through third parties.
That’s really not a lot compared with other email marketing tools like AWeber, which has over 800 integrations.
But GetResponse’s smaller number of integrations does make sense. The platform is trying to be an all-in-one tool; so, ideally, you won’t need to connect it to too many other tools.
That said, GetResponse does connect to many tools that you may already be using.
For e-commerce tools, there’s support for:
And for social media, there’s support for:
A Flexible Landing Page Creator
Very few other email marketing tools offer a landing page builder, let alone a good one.
While GetResponse’s landing page builder isn’t the best I’ve used, it’s quite good for an email marketing provider.
You can choose from over 180 templates, all sorted by category (e.g., downloads, sales, webinars):
The page editor itself is fairly smooth for the most part, but it can be clunky sometimes. It lets you drag and drop elements just about anywhere, but the other elements around it won’t automatically adjust.
As long as you pick a template close to what you want, it’s a pretty good experience.
The designs themselves look great, and they’re all mobile-responsive. Finally, it’s also easy to create multiple versions of a landing page within the editor at the same time and split-test them.
Another unique feature that comes with most paid plans is the ability to create and host webinars from inside your account.
There’s no technical setup needed, only a single page of basic settings:
You can create a new webinar in under a minute.
Perhaps the nicest part of this feature is that you can email lists of contacts with the webinar information.
The webinar software is high-quality, with features like:
- Chat and poll tools
- Screen sharing
- YouTube integration
Afterwards, you’ll have access to attendee statistics.
The final main piece of the “all-in-one” puzzle is GetResponse’s CRM, which is included on most paid plans.
It’s a standard Kanban-style CRM that lets you build sales pipelines.
It’s very useful if you’re a B2B marketer, but not so much if you’re a blogger.
You can add detailed notes, events, and reminders to each individual lead.
Most importantly, it integrates directly with your email automation funnels. You can add contacts to certain stages of your pipelines when they meet certain conditions.
Ease of use
A Flexible and Mostly Intuitive User Interface
At first, there’s a lot thrown at you when you log into your account.
There’s a menu icon at the top left corner, another menu near the top right corner, and many buttons across your dashboard.
I’d say the navigation isn’t exactly intuitive.
Fortunately, the actual main menu (the one at the top left) is reasonably clear and easy to use:
The different parts of the platform are clearly divided (e.g., Landing pages, Webinars, etc.).
It’s a bit strange that Autoresponders aren’t part of Email marketing, but for the most part, the labels are clear.
Creating an actual email draft (in Email marketing) is as simple as any other email marketing tool I’ve used. The steps are clearly shown along the top of the page at each stage.
There are over 500 responsive templates, divided into categories. My only complaint is that there’s no search function for them.
While there’s a lot I like about GetResponse’s user interface, there are three features that stand out to me.
Time-Saving Email Editor Features
Creating emails in the drag-and-drop editor is as easy as it gets.
It’s very smooth; when you drag in a new element, the other elements around it adapt automatically. There are pre-formatted blocks combining image and text blocks to save you time fiddling around with the layout.
In addition, the mobile preview is always shown on the right, without taking up too much space.
Email Send Time Optimization
Before you send or schedule an email, you have the option to enable the “Perfect Timing” feature.
On most other email marketing platforms, you’re stuck running split-tests (if you can even do that) to figure out the best time to send emails.
But GetResponse will do that optimization for you, for each individual contact. This will not only save a ton of time, but also get you better results than trying to find a blanket “best” time for your entire list.
A Customizable Dashboard
Most account dashboards show you a few recent email performance stats, but often not exactly what you want to see.
GetResponse gives you more control over your account dashboard so that you can see the exact data you want when you log in, which saves you time.
You can add or remove widgets from your dashboard, and there are 11 to choose from.
In addition to the default widgets, you can add widgets for:
- Contact growth
- Form, newsletter, webinar, survey, or landing page stats
- A summary of your lists, workflows, or autoresponders
Analytics & Reporting
Most of the Data You Need, But Not the Most Intuitive
Looking at the report options above, it really seems like a whole bunch of report options are thrown together almost at random.
It’s not the most intuitive reporting interface I’ve used.
However, it’s nice that all the reports are in one section, and they do offer the analytics that an email marketer needs if you know where to look.
What the Analytics Dashboard Offers
The main report you’ll probably use is the “newsletter” report, which lets you see a detailed breakdown of any individual email’s performance.
This includes all the basics like open, click, unsubscribe, bounce, and complaint rate. You can also set up goal-tracking to track conversions, and you can see which emails led to a conversion in this report.
Unique Exporting Options
GetResponse is unique in its exporting functions in both a good way and a bad way.
The bad is that there’s no way to directly export a report in your account to a spreadsheet or PDF.
The good is that you can set up automatic email reports that will give you a summary of the recent performance of any list you choose.
Limited Send Time Optimization Data
While you have most of the basic performance data that you’ll need to figure out whether emails are performing well, there’s not much to help you optimize your campaigns.
Specifically, most other tools offer an hourly breakdown of when emails were opened, which helps you optimize when you send your emails, but GetResponse doesn’t.
However, if you use the “Perfect Timing” feature discussed above, perhaps you won’t need the detailed data.
This was just a quick look at the various analytics that GetResponse offers. I wrote a more detailed guide with screenshots if you’d like to see what other data is available.
Quick and Clear Answers to Problems
GetResponse offers three support channels:
- Live chat (24/7)
Additionally, there’s a great knowledge base that answers most common questions.
It’s good to know what to expect in terms of support quality before buying a tool, so I put GetResponse’s support team to a little test.
Using each of the main channels, I asked a different question to get a reasonable picture of the support quality.
First, I started with live chat and asked a very simple question about whether or not phone support was offered.
As you now know, it isn’t, and that’s exactly what I was told two minutes after I asked. While not an instant answer, that’s quite fast, and the answer was short and to the point.
Next, I fired off an email to find out what exactly happens to an account when the free trial plan expires (since there’s not much information about that anywhere):
The answer was polite and clear, and I received it after about 25 minutes, which is quite good for ticket support.
Finally, I created a ticket to find out whether a contact on multiple list counts more than once toward a plan’s limit (spoiler: it does):
In about 15 minutes, I received an answer. Again, it was clear, and there was even an example to make it easier to understand.
So while those support questions weren’t exactly huge challenges to fix, they do show that you can reliably get quick, polite, and clear answers from GetResponse’s support team.
The cost of GetResponse depends on both the plan you choose and the size of your subscriber list.
The features offered with each plan vary quite a bit, although all plans are scalable and can support large lists of contacts.
The basic “Email” plan is relatively cheap compared with most other email marketing providers, but it lacks features like the CRM and certain advanced options for landing pages and automation.
If you want the full features that GetResponse offers, you’ll need to upgrade. Since so much is included, GetResponse plans get fairly expensive quickly. If you use most of the features, that price is justified.
GetResponse accepts debit and major credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, Maestro, JCB, and American Express).
In addition, PayPal is accepted for a lot of countries, but not in any major Western countries (e.g., U.S., Canada, France, England).
While there’s no free plan, there’s a 30-day free trial — no credit card required. It gives you access to almost all the features GetResponse has, with minor limitations (e.g., you can have only up to 1,000 contacts).
If you happen to run a non-profit, you can apply for a 50% lifetime discount.
Otherwise, you can still bring prices down if you’re willing to pay more up front; GetResponse offers discounts if you choose a 12- or 24-month term.
|# of emails per month||# of subscribers||Multi-user accounts||Automation||Segmentation||Analytics||Price (per month)|
Cancellations & Refunds
You can cancel your account at any time without having to contact support. It takes a while to go through all the pages to confirm that you want to cancel your account, but it doesn’t take too long.
If you want to completely delete a free account that hasn’t been upgraded, you’ll need to contact customer support.
While GetResponse is generous with free trials, it isn’t with refunds. GetResponse has a no-refund policy. Whether you pay for a month or for a year, you can’t get a refund if you cancel in the middle of the period.
And because your account is completely deleted when you cancel, you don’t even have access to the platform until the end of the period you paid for.
You can see my detailed guide to canceling a GetResponse account if you’d like more info.
- Number of emails per month: Unlimited
- Number of subscribers: 1000
- Number of emails per month: Unlimited
- Number of subscribers: 5000
- Multi-user accounts: 3
- Number of emails per month: Unlimited
- Number of subscribers: 10000
- Multi-user accounts: 5