MailerLite Review

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This review was last updated on August 4th, 2018.

MailerLite is a newcomer to the email marketing scene. Launched in 2014, it has rapidly grown into one of the best newsletter services today, mostly thanks to their generous “Forever Free” plan and their fast and modern editor. Let’s see what else MailerLite has to offer.

Interface

When you’re dealing with an email marketing platform you spend most of your time on the interface. While some newsletter services’ interfaces are a hell to deal with, MailerLite’s interface is one of the simplest and easy-to-use out there.

Dashboard

MailerLite’s dashboard is exceptionally clean and minimalist, offering you everything you need in one place. One the main dashboard you can see in one glance your total number of subscribers, the number of new sign-up subscribers, the plan you’re on with the account approval level (1000 unique subscribers for the free plan) and the total number of emails sent. You can also see your subscribers growth with a simple graph showing you your growth over the last 3 months, the number of active automation flows as well as the active forms.

On the top bar, you can access the “Campaign” tab where you can find your sent and active campaigns, and create one from there. You can also access your “Subscribers” tab and see your total number of subscribers and a few tracking statistics. You can also access the “Forms” tab and create either a form, a popup, or a landing page from there (more on that in the Extras part of the review). Finally, we have the Automation tab, where you can create a new automation workflow.

Ease-of-use

MailerLite’s team made everything they could to hold your hand while you create anything. And that’s pretty enjoyable if you’re a beginner or even an experienced user. Because everything is so easy to make and edit, managing your campaigns and subscribers becomes really fun with MailerLite.

You can access pretty much anything you want with a couple clicks, and all the data you need is there, at a glance. The minimalist design works really well, and even a kid could use MailerLite to create his own newsletter.

Overall design

The minimalist and flat design looks really good, everything loads fast, the service is really easy to use, and even if you somehow manage to get confused you can always hit up the support with the live chat option on the bottom right corner of the dashboard. But honestly, MailerLite’s overall interface is really clean, modern, and easy to use, with little-to-no fuss.

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Email Types

What kind of emails can you send with MailerLite? Let’s see: when you click on the “Create Campaign” button from the “Campaigns” tab, you’re offered 4 choices: Regular Campaign, A/B Split Campaign, Auto Resend, and RSS Campaign.

Broadcast campaigns & scheduled newsletters

This is a basic feature that every email marketing software offers. You select your contacts, you create the email, and you send it right away or you schedule it. Again, the process with MailerLite is really easy to follow. They broke it down into 4 steps.

First, you create the subject of the email and you set your sender information and the language of the email.

Then, you create the content of the email. You can either use the drag-and-drop builder, the rich-text editor, use your own HTML code, or choose one of their templates.

Once you’re done with the content, you move onto the next step which is choosing the recipients of the email. You can choose to send it to all of your subscribers, only the subscribers of a certain group/segment, or any subscribers filtered through any condition of your choice (such as signup date or source, timezone, or open/click rate).

Once you’re done selecting the recipients, you can review your setup and move onto the scheduling part. You can send your campaign right away or schedule a time in the future. One neat feature is that you can deliver based on timezones, meaning that you can schedule your campaign for a selected time in all time zones, but it needs to be set 24h in advance.

A/B testing

A/B testing is a feature loved by marketers. A/B tests allow you to set up two variations of your campaign and send it to a small percentage of total recipients. With MailerLite, you can only A/B test one element of your campaign at a time. This is a bit limited compared to other services, but it’s a good feature to have nonetheless.

You can test the email subject and try two different subject lines to see which one has better open or click rate, or you can edit the “from” name to see if you are using the best “from” name for your campaigns, or you can send 2 different emails with either a small change in the content or two different versions of your email content if you wish. The process is similar to sending a broadcast email campaign, and the reports are easy to understand.

RSS-to-newsletter

An RSS-to-newsletter feature allows you to send automated emails filled with content from an RSS feed of your choice. You pick a subject, a template, and recipients, and your emails are sent automatically. It’s a good way to keep your subscribers coming back to a blog without much effort on your part. You enter the URL of your RSS feed source and MailerLite will grab the content from your feed and send it as a recurring email to your recipients.

Follow-up emails (Auto Resend)

When your emails are not opened or no links are clicked, you don’t have a lot of options: you have to send a follow-up email. If you’re doing an automation workflow, you can set this up and forget. But if you’re sending a broadcast campaign and you really want your subscribers to open your emails, you can send an “Auto Resend” campaign with MailerLite. Basically, you resend your campaign to those recipients who didn’t open your first campaign or didn’t click any link. And when doing that, you have 3 customization options:

  • Edit the email subject: resend your second campaign with a changed subject.
  • Edit the email subject and add a personal message: add a personal message above your second campaign body.
  • Edit the email subject and content: make one small change, or change your second campaign content fully.
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Email Designs, and Templates

Are MailerLite’s templates well designed, and do we have a lot of choices? And what about their editor?

Editor

MailerLite offers 3 options when it comes to creating an email.

Drag-and-drop editor

With this drag-and-drop builder, you can easily build beautiful emails. Drag content blocks to create the layout you want, insert your text and images, and choose a color theme or make your own.

You can choose from 15 different content blocks to create your email:

  • Title
  • Text Button
  • Divider
  • Image
  • Image + Text
  • Image / Text
  • Product
  • Gallery
  • Social Links
  • Video
  • Code
  • Countdown
  • RSS Items
  • Signature

The “Product” and “Countdown” blocks are particularly useful if you have an online store and are running a promotion and want to create a sense of urgency for your subscribers, while the “Signature” block is great if you’re sending an onboarding or welcome email and want to make a more personal connection with your subscribers.

Overall, these blocks are complete and easy to use, and you can customize them easily too. You can edit fonts, colors, button styles, the header and footer, and dozens of other elements.

You can choose from 30+ ready-made color palettes (with one cheekily named “50 shades of grey”) or you can create your own and use it for all of your emails to match your brand.

Rich text editor

If you’re old-school and just want to send simple text emails, you can use the rich text editor. It’s quite limited, of course, but you can still add images and styling. But it’s limited, and that’s the point of a rich text editor.

Custom HTML editor

Here you can write or import your own HTML. If you have a ready-made template from a past campaign (with another email service for example), you can use it here and edit it. They state that this option is for the experts because not everyone knows HMTL and CSS. But if you do, you can completely customize your newsletter with this editor.

Responsive designs

Are emails made with MailerLite’s drag-and-drop editor responsive? Yes, they are. All of them. You can also see how they look on mobile directly from the editor thanks to a little “desktop to mobile” switch.

Modern-looking designs

Emails made with the drag-and-drop editor have the same minimalist and clean look as MailerLite’s overall design. Everything looks really good, and even if you want to add some design fluff to your emails, you can, and they will still look good.

Great choice of template designs

If you don’t want to start from scratch with the drag-and-drop builder you can always choose one of the ready-made email templates provided for free by MailerLite. They all look really nice and are, of course, responsive, and you can customize them as much as you want. The only downside is that they only have a little bit over 20 templates to choose from, but they all are quite unique and well-designed. Looks like they prefer quality over quantity.

Also, if you’ve already designed your own template for a previous email campaign, you can reuse it for all of your new emails in the future, which prevents you from redesigning from scratch every time you want to send a campaign.

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Features

What features does MailerLite offer?

Email automation

Setting up a workflow is really easy with MailerLite.

You first choose a trigger, be it when a subscriber joins a group, the anniversary of a date, the exact match of a date, when a subscriber clicks a specific link, or when a field is updated (new order, name added, etc…). The choices here a bit limited, but you can work around the limitations easily if you don’t need an advanced workflow.

You then have 4 choices: sending an email, setting up a delay, a condition, or an action. Let’s see what these 4 choices are.

First, you can send an email. You have to design the email while doing the workflow, but you can also pick a recent email you’ve designed.

Second, setting up a delay. You can either set a defined number of minutes/hours/days/weeks/months, or you can set a specific time of the day, a day of the week, a day of the month, or date of the year. This can come handy if you want to send a ready-made weekly newsletter or a valentine’s day special email for example.

Third, setting up a condition. You can create a condition based on 3 elements: workflow activity, custom fields, or campaign activity. A condition based on campaign activity or workflow depends on your previously sent emails, while one based on custom fields lets you split your workflow in 2 between subscribers who provided a name and those who didn’t for example. The output of a condition is basically yes or no. You can then set up multiple conditions down the road to send more specific emails.

Fourth, executing an action. 5 actions are available here to help you manage your subscribers: update a custom field, copy to a group, move to a group, remove from a group, and mark as unsubscribed.

These automation options are easy-to-understand but can be quite limited and seem a bit too simple.

Personalization

When sending an email with MailerLite, you can use any of the provided information by your subscribers inside your email content and subject. This means you can insert their email address, name, last name, company, country, city, phone, state, ZIP code. They have to provide this information though.

Also, if you use any of their integrations, let’s say Woocommerce, you can include their orders count, total spent, or last order. By integrating MailerLite with other services, you can get more personalized data to display, which is a plus. You can also add custom fields if needed.

List management

MailerLite has made managing your subscribers a breeze. You can add them into segments and groups, filter them depending on filters such as time inactive, signup source or date, and you can even see some basic statistics regarding the top email clients used, the reading environment (mobile or desktop), and their engagement.

Lead scoring

Unfortunately, MailerLite does not provide a lead scoring feature. If you rely heavily on email marketing to get sales, you might want to check out a better alternative such as Active Campaign.

Lead segmentation

Thanks to their workflows and integrations, you can segment your leads based on as many elements as you wish. It can be a bit tedious to pull off, but it’s possible.

A/B testing

As we’ve seen earlier in the review, MailerLite does allow us to run A/B tests, even though they are a bit limited in our opinion.

Send time optimization

Unlike MailChimp, MailerLite doesn’t allow you to automatically optimize the send time of your campaigns. They don’t have as much data as bigger players in the industry do, so you will have to manually see when you have the best open rates.

Deliver by timezone

MailerLite lets you send a campaign at the desired time based on your subscribers’ time zones. That means that you can send a morning email at 8 AM to anyone in the world, no matter where you’re living.

Bounce management

When your emails bounce, this damages your sender reputation. There are 2 kinds of bounces: soft bounces (full mailbox, server timeout, or message too large) and hard bounces (non-existent email address or blocked email by the recipient’s server).

When your emails hard bounce, MailerLite will automatically move these recipients into a “Bounced Subscribers” category, and they won’t receive future campaigns.

Please beware, MailerLite has the right to suspend any account that has a bounce rate over 5%. Managing your list is therefore very important.

Blacklisting

MailerLite does not offer a blacklisting feature.

Tracking

You can see on your dashboard your open rates and click rates, and you can even track your links thanks to Google Analytics.

SMS Marketing

MailerLite does not offer an SMS marketing feature.

Spam-testing

MailerLite does not offer a spam-testing feature allowing you to preview how your campaigns will be treated by servers and such.

But they have another neat feature taking care of spam complaints. When subscribers report an email of yours as spam, MailerLite automatically removes these subscribers from your active list, and they won’t receive your future emails.

Design-testing

You can preview your emails from the drag-and-drop builder while you make them, and even see a mobile preview. You can also send yourself a preview of the final email.

Reports and analysis

You can have access to basic data such as subscribers growth statistics, average open rate and click rate per campaign and per month, but the reports are a bit thin. There is no dedicated page for your reports, and MailerLite lacks some advanced reporting and analysis and that can be a drawback if you want to deeply analyze how your campaigns perform. There are no geo-tracking, social, or even e-commerce tracking available, although you can use Google Analytics to tracks your clicks.

Use your own domain

You can send your campaigns from your own email address, and your recipients can reply back if they want to.

Authentication

Domain Authentication tells your recipients that it’s OK for MailerLite’s servers to send email on your behalf. It can instantly help you avoid spam filters and proves that your email is not a forgery.

MailerLite will authenticate all emails for you. This is the default setting and means that they will sign your emails automatically without you needing to do a thing. All popular authentication techniques, including DomainKeys, DKIM, SenderID and SPF records, are set up for you. With this method, you can still set your own “from” address (e.g. info@yourcompany.com) but some email clients, such as Outlook and Gmail, will add extra sender details to the “from” field and it will look like this: “info@yourcompany.com via mlsend.com”.

You can also manage your own authentication if you wish, and there won’t be any extra details added to the sender field.

Different levels of account access

You can set up 5 kinds of accounts for your team:

  • Administrator: Administrator has full access and can perform all actions in the account.
  • Manager: Has full access, but can’t create new users, export subscribers, and access billing.
  • Viewer: Viewer can only view reports.
  • Accountant: Can only access bills.
  • Custom user: Select the sections of your account that the user should have access to.
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Integrations

MailerLite has over 45 integrations with other services on the internet. Here are a few integrations available: Zapier, Shopify, WordPress, Squarespace, Facebook, WooCommerce, Sumo, GetSiteControl, Privy, OptinMonster, and many more.

They also have a developer API that makes it easy for developers to simply and smoothly integrate MailerLite with other apps.

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Extras

Opt-in & opt-out process

The opt-in process is pretty much straightforward. Once the email is submitted, a confirmation email is sent to the recipient. The recipient must confirm his subscription by clicking the link in that email. You can customize the confirmation email to match your brand, and you can edit the standard confirmation message if you want.

MailerLite offers double opt-in, meaning that every subscriber must confirm his email address to be added to your list, which prevents getting a huge bounce rate, or you can choose to only use single opt-in (which is really not recommended on the long-term).

Once an email is confirmed, you can redirect the user to either a standard “Thank You” page provided by MailerLite (that you can, of course, customize to your preferences), or you can redirect them to your own landing page if you have one.

The opt-out process is pretty much straightforward too. Every email you send includes an “unsubscribe” link that leads to your custom MailerLite opt-out page. You can customize the message, and try to convince your subscribers to stay with you one last time. You can also ask for feedback if you want to know why they unsubscribed.

Deliverability

In our test, we have found that the deliverability with MailerLite was quite good, with results close to MailChimp’s and GetResponse’s. They verify every account that signs up to prevent spammers from signing up, and when you send your first campaign they check your stats to confirm that you’re not a spammer.

Also worth noting is that they don’t send your emails to the “promotion” tab on Gmail, but directly to the main inbox of the most popular providers.

Registration forms

MailerLite provides 3 types of registration forms: popups, landing pages, and embeddable forms. In this section, we are covering the latter.

The process of creating an embeddable form is easy and broken up into 4 steps. You give a name to your form, you then choose between creating an embeddable form or a subscribe button.

Basically, an embeddable form is a subscribe form that you create an embed anywhere on your website (at the end of an article, in the footer, or anywhere else you want) and a subscribe button is a button that opens a popup subscribe form when your visitor clicks it. We don’t really know why that button is in this section of the dashboard, but it can come in handy if you want to compare the two options.

After choosing the type of form (we choose a simple embeddable form), you have to pick a group you want to add your subscribers too, and then you get to design the form itself. Honestly, we found the form design options to be a little too light for our taste. They are quite limited: you don’t have templates available, you can only edit a few minor settings, you can’t add an image or animations. Basically, it lacks a lot of design options, and you are better off going with a popup service that integrates with MailerLite such as Sumo or OptinMonster.

Pop-up forms

As we said earlier, MailerLite lets you create popups, which is definitely a plus. However, similarly to their regular subscribe form editor, the options are limited.

When you create a popup form, you are offered 4 templates to choose from. This is good, but not great, even though everything is offered for free. You can either choose to create a basic popup (3 templates available) or you can create a fullscreen popup, also called a “welcome mat” (only 1 template available).

You can customize their templates to match your style and needs, easily add your text, images, fields, change colors and other settings. But again, you can hit a roadblock pretty fast if you want more advanced options.

One good feature that saves the day for MailerLite is that you can customize the behavior of the popups you made. You can choose when you want to show the popup (Wait x seconds before showing the popup, show when the user scrolls to x% of the page, show before closing page – aka exit popup). You can also edit the frequency and set the period when you want to show the popup to the same user again if the user didn’t subscribe, and the visibility (always show, hide on specific pages, only show on specific pages, hide on mobiles or tablets).

We really have mixed feelings concerning their forms, but if MailerLite satisfies your needs, that’s great. If it doesn’t, use a third-party app that integrates with them. You don’t want to hurt your conversions rates for being cheap.

Landing page editor & templates

An email marketing service that offers a landing page builder integrated with their service is always welcomed, and MailerLite knows that. It’s a good feature for users that don’t have a website yet or don’t know how to create converting landing pages.

You can select from one of their 10 pre-made templates or use their drag-and-drop editor to customize the templates exactly to your liking. The editor is much better than the popup and form editor that we covered in the previous sections. You can choose from 16 blocks, and edit the page to your liking easily. You can also edit the “Success” page from this editor, and preview how your landing page will look on mobile devices. Overall, this is a great feature.

Here are their templates: Ebook, Ecourse, Invite, Prelaunch, Webinar, Coming Soon, Lead Generation, Product, Free PDF, Book promote.

Once you’re done editing, you get to set the page settings. You can choose the landing page URL by either using your own domain name or by using their standard landing page URL subscribepage.com/name, you can also set the SEO settings (page title, meta keywords, meta description, allow search engines to index this landing page) to improve your landing page visibility in search engines (or hide it if needed), and finally you can set the Facebook share settings by setting up the Facebook share title, Facebook share description, and Facebook share image).

Storage for data and images

You can store an unlimited number of images and data with MailerLite. They even offer a file manager and a built-in image editor to let you create, manage, and edit your images easily. The whole process is a breeze, and that’s a good point for them.

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Support

Reaching an email marketing service’s support can be a tedious process for some. But not with MailerLite.

Knowledgebase

You can access their complete and easy-to-understand knowledgebase right within your dashboard. Let’s say you have a hard time setting up subscribers groups: you just have to click the help button on the bottom right corner of your dashboard to get to the most asked questions regarding this feature. It’s a really neat experience and that saves so much time. The documentation is clear, and a lot of videos are available to guide you through any process you need help with.

Email support

Their email support is really reactive, and they answer in no time. They have a team of 5 customer support agents ready to help and “working around the clock to always be present whenever you have a question or a problem”.

Phone support

MailerLite does not offer phone support.

Live chat support

Contacting the customer support team is really easy (and even faster) with their live chat option. You can access it from your dashboard by clicking the live chat button on the bottom right corner. We got answers in less than 20 minutes every time we reached out. Good job!

Overall support feedback

MailerLite offers a great and really reactive support, and that’s one of their strongest advantages in our opinion.

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Languages

MailerLite is based in Vilnius, Lithuania and they are not afraid to show it. Half of their team works remotely from places around the world, and thus they support a lot of languages.

MailerLite’s main website and dashboard are available in English, Spanish, French, Ukrainian, Russian, Polish and Lithuanian, and you can send email campaigns in more than 35 languages.

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Pricing

Free plan

MailerLite’s free plan is one of the most generous out there. They call it the “Forever Free” plan, and it gives you access to absolutely everything they offer for up to 1000 email subscribers. This means you can send an unlimited number of emails and you can use every feature we’ve covered in this review (templates, landing pages, automation, etc…) for free, no credit card required.

Free trial

MailerLite does not offer a free trial.

Plans

Here are MailerLite’s plans. Bigger plans are available.

Subscribers Emails per month Pricing
0 – 1,000 Unlimited Free
1,001 – 2,500 Unlimited $10 per month
2,501 – 5,000 Unlimited $20 per month
5,001 – 10,000 Unlimited $35 per month
10,001 – 15,000 Unlimited $50 per month
15,001 – 20,000 Unlimited $65 per month
20,001 – 25,000 Unlimited $80 per month
25,001 – 30,000 Unlimited $95 per month
30,001 – 35,000 Unlimited $110 per month

Value for money

As we said before in this review, MailerLite is a great option if you’re a beginner or if you have a low budget. The value for your money is really great, even though some features are missing or can become limiting.

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Conclusion

8.9 Total Score
Great for beginners

With a modern design, an easy-to-use dashboard, and a generous free plan, MailerLite could be a great option for you if you're a beginner. It lacks some advanced features though and can be limited when it comes to automation and reporting, which means that you're leaving money on the table with your email marketing efforts.

8.9Editor's score
Usability
9.5
Features
7.5
Pricing
9.5
Support
9
2.7User's score
Usability
4
Features
2
Pricing
4
Support
1
PROS
  • Generous free plan
  • Easy-to-use
  • Modern design
  • Great support
CONS
  • A bit too simplistic
  • Limited automation
  • Lacking advanced reporting
Add your review  |  Read reviews and comments
Interface
Dashboard: Excellent
Ease of use: Excellent
Design: ✔️ Excellent
Email Types
Broadcast campaigns
Scheduled newsletters
A/B testing
RSS-to-newsletter
Follow-up emails
Email Designs and Templates
Drag-and-drop editor
Rich text editor
Custom HTML editor
Responsive designs
Modern-looking designs
Great choice of template designs
Number of available templates: 20 +
Features
Email automation
Personalization
List management
Lead scoring
Lead segmentation
A/B testing
Send time optimization
Deliver by timezone
Bounce management
Blacklisting
Tracking
SMS Marketing
Spam-testing
Design-testing
Reports and analysis
Use your own domain
Authentication
Different levels of account access
Integrations
Zapier Integration
Gmail Integration
Outlook Integration
Salesforce Integration
Shopify Integration
Wordpress Integration
Google Analytics Integration
Facebook Integration
Number of integrations: 46 +
Extras
Opt-in & opt-out process: Great
Deliverability: Great
Registration forms: Great
Pop-up forms
Landing page editor & templates
Storage for data and images: Unlimited
Support
Knowledgebase
Email support
Phone support
Live chat support
Answers in less than 48h
Overall feedback: Excellent support
Languages
English
Spanish
Portuguese
German
French
Russian
Arabic
Japanese
Hindi
Pricing
Free plan
Free trial
Value for money: ✔️ Excellent
8.9 Total Score
Great for beginners

With a modern design, an easy-to-use dashboard, and a generous free plan, MailerLite could be a great option for you if you're a beginner. It lacks some advanced features though and can be limited when it comes to automation and reporting, which means that you're leaving money on the table with your email marketing efforts.

8.9Editor's score
Usability
9.5
Features
7.5
Pricing
9.5
Support
9
2.7User's score
Usability
4
Features
2
Pricing
4
Support
1
PROS
  • Generous free plan
  • Easy-to-use
  • Modern design
  • Great support
CONS
  • A bit too simplistic
  • Limited automation
  • Lacking advanced reporting
Add your review  |  Read reviews and comments
1 Comment
  1. Reply
    Deirdre
    October 20, 2018 at 5:54 am
    1.35
    Usability
    40
    Features
    20
    Pricing
    40
    Support
    10

    Used to be highly recommended service, unfortunately thins have changed. I would never use Mailerlite again for my websites. Terrible experience, they are cheap, but thats it. No point to waste your time!

    + PROS: Cheap service and fairly easy to use.
    - CONS: Terrible customer support to offer solutions. Also after they got trouble with Spamhouse and their servers got blacklisted then most of the emails end up in spam folders. And now they have reported that they have some issues with Google. Basically you pay for nothing, your subscribers will never see your emails. What a shame!
    Helpful(0) Unhelpful(0)You have already voted this

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