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7 Best Sendgrid Alternatives with Free Competitors Included

Aug 17, 2023 - By Camilla Mackeviciute

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Chances are you were once interested in SendGrid for its reputation as a transactional email service provider or SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) service provider. While it’s true that big-name brands are still putting aside leaving the platform, SendGrid has been a questionable choice for small to medium businesses (SMBs) for a while now.

Read on to learn about the best SendGrid alternatives and what they have to offer. But before we start, let’s see why people consider switching from Sengrid in the first place.

Why Consider SendGrid Alternatives?

SendGrid might look attractive to its famous clients. After all, if something like Yelp is using it, it must be good, right? Unfortunately, SendGrid seems to keep riding on the same wave, offering little improvements over time, prioritizing the big names, and getting rather costly.

Let’s look at some eCommerce businesses’ reasons for leaving Sengrid in more detail:

  • Expensive. The essentials plan starts from a relatively high $20 per month. What you get in return is just a drop of all features;
  • Only a 3-day email log. Log retention can be used in evaluating your email performance. Just three days mean you have to hurry for unsatisfactory results or pay for a 30-day log history extra to an already costly service.
  • Restrictive marketing channels diversification. If you wish to explore other high-converting marketing channels like SMS messages, push notifications, or chats, you’ll need to invest in not-so-cheap add-ons.
  • Unsatisfactory customer service. A considerable number of users have reported that SendGrid’s support has declined over time and is often unresponsive.
  • Blacklisted IPs. This one is a huge no-no in the email marketing context. If dedicated IP addresses are blacklisted, most marketing messages will go straight to the spam folder.

Let’s Compare Best SendGrid Alternatives in 2023

If you’re searching for email marketing software like SendGrid, you should consider the following tools: 

  • Sender
  • Constant Contact
  • HubSpot
  • ActiveCampaign
  • DRIP
  • Mailjet
  • Mailchimp

1. Sender – Best SendGrid Alternative for Automation

Sender is on the top of our SendGrid alternatives list for a good reason – it’s a powerful email and SMS marketing tool with excellent automation capabilities. Sender stands out as a candidate for your omnichannel campaigns due to its human-friendly interface, robust features, and exceptional deliverability. It’s all you need to reach and engage your customers effectively.

  • Email and SMS automation;
  • Smart segmentation and personalization; 
  • High-converting popups and forms;
  • Drag-and-drop email builder with free premade templates;
  • 24/7 customer support over LiveChat & email.
sender_logo

Sender offers many features for your business growth for far smaller pricing than SendGrid. Already with Sender’s Free Forever plan, you can easily set up automation campaigns based on smart segmentation: abandoned carts, winback emails, follow-ups, cross-selling, etc. Be sure that your email will hit the target, too, as Sender has dedicated IPs and complete GDPR compliance resulting in maximum deliverability.

If you want to optimize your email marketing efforts even more, Sender’s drag-and-drop builder with premade templates library can do wonders. Create professional and well-designed emails with your brand’s spirit in no time. You can also expect to have better insights into your email marketing campaigns’ performance with easy-to-understand, detailed analytics features.

Finally, doesn’t SenGrid’s customer support cut it anymore? With Sender’s pro and enterprise plans, your dedicated customer success manager will be responsible for your total satisfaction.

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Why is Sender the Best SendGrid Alternative?

Sender is a top choice for smaller businesses and eCommerce stores looking to up their email and SMS marketing campaigns owning to advanced features and benefits:

  • Powerful automation feature with drag-and-drop builder to create effective automation funnels; 
  • SMS & email marketing campaigns to nurture leads into buyers; 
  • Better customer support and documentation; 
  • Excellent drag-and-drop email builder with unique design templates and elements; 
  • Generous free plan with zero restrictions.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
Omnichannel marketing automation builderNo landing page builder (yet)
Simple drag-and-drop email builder with responsive templatesSender logo with a free plan
Most affordable in the market

Pricing: 

  • Forever-free pricing plan for up to 2500 subscribers with zero restrictions and feature limits; 
  • Paid plans start at $8 monthly for sending up to 30,000 emails. 

2. Constant Contact – Good Alternative for CRM Features

Constant Contact is a reputable email marketing platform that excels in providing CRM (Customer Relationship Management) features alongside reliable email delivery services. While SendGrid can feel restrictive in solutions for customer relationship management, Constant Contact often excels.

  • Contact management and segmentation for targeted campaigns;
  • Email campaign templates and a customizable email editor;
  • Real-time reporting and analytics for tracking campaign performance;
  • Integration with popular CRMs and eCommerce platforms.
constantcontact_logo

Constant Contact is a reliable email marketing tool that can be a good alternative to SendGrid in specific scenarios. The platform offers robust contact management features, enabling you to effectively segment your email lists, import contacts, and manage subscriber preferences.

Another thing worth a mention is their reporting and analytics tools that are irreplaceable in tracking the performance of your email campaigns, including open rates, click-through rates, and other key metrics. Constant Contact is an excellent choice if you want to keep growing the ROI (Return On Investment) of your marketing efforts.

constantcontact_dashboard

Why is Constant Contact a Good SendGrid Alternative?

Constant Contact is a good solution for email marketers looking to improve their customer relationships. There are a few reasons for that:

  • A user-friendly interface with a drag-and-drop email editor for professional-looking email campaigns;
  • A wide range of customizable email templates for designing visually appealing emails that align with the brand.
  • Potent contact management, events, and donations features; 
  • Automation tools for setting up triggered emails, autoresponders, and targeted campaigns based on user behavior or specific events.
  • Comprehensive reporting and analytics tools.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
Robust CRM featuresLimited automation capabilities 
Great list management and segmentation featuresLimited advanced email automation options
Integration with popular CRM platformsHigher pricing for larger subscriber lists

Pricing:

  • Paid plans start at $12 monthly for up to 500 subscribers with basic email marketing features. Advanced features are available on a plan that costs $35 per month for 500 subscribers; 
  • Free limited-time trial plan is also available to test out platform features. 

3. HubSpot – Best in Terms of Feature-Richness

HubSpot offers one of the most extensive ranges of features, interesting for any size business looking to diversify its email marketing efforts. Though their pricing is similar to SendGrid, it’s a better bang for the buck.

  • All-in-one marketing automation platform with email marketing capabilities;
  • Personalization features for tailored email campaigns;
  • Powerful CRM system for managing customer interactions;
  • Landing page builder and conversion tracking.
HubSpot_logo

Unlike SendGrid, which mainly specializes in transactional email delivery service and API functionality, HubSpot is a trusted all-in-one marketing platform. It offers a comprehensive suite of marketing tools beyond email marketing, including CRM, lead generation, social media management, content management, and analytics. This integrated approach allows for a seamless marketing experience and better coordination of your marketing efforts.

With HubSpot, you can trust to have your marketing campaigns fully optimized as they offer robust capabilities such as advanced automation with visual workflow builder, powerful contact management tools, and dynamic content possibilities. Another great strength of HubSpot is its high flexibility in your marketing stack due to extensive integrations with other marketing tools, CRMs, and platforms.

hubspot_dashboard

Why is HubSpot a Good SendGrid Alternative?

HubSpot is the best switch from SendGrid for large enterprises that can allow themselves to pay more, as the benefits include but are not limited to the following:

  • All-in-one marketing platform that goes beyond email marketing, including CRM, lead generation, social media management, content management, and analytics.
  • Robust automation capabilities allow creating complex workflows and nurturing leads through personalized and targeted email sequences; 
  • Contact management and segmentation for organizing contacts, creating custom segments, and personalizing email campaigns based on specific criteria or behaviors;
  • Personalization and dynamic content that allows dynamically inserting contact properties and creating more personalized email experiences;
  • A/B Testing of various email elements and advanced optimization to make data-driven decisions with built-in optimization features. 

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
Extensive range of featuresSteep learning curve for beginners
Seamless integration with HubSpot’s CRMUnreasonably high pricing structure
Powerful automation and personalization capabilitiesLimited features on lower plans

Pricing: 

  • Paid plans start at $18 per month for up to 1000 email subscribers; 
  • Limited-time free trial is also available with feature restrictions. 

4. ActiveCampaign – Best Competitor for Email Templates Design

Are you looking for fresher-looking email templates than the ones SendGrid currently offers? You’ll find a vast library at ActiveCampaign accompanied by advanced email marketing features.

  • Drag-and-drop email designer with a library of customizable templates;
  • Advanced automation workflows and personalization options;
  • CRM system for managing customer interactions;
  • Personalization & dynamic content customization.
ActiveCampaign_logo

If you’re a marketer that knows how vital conversion is for a marketing campaign’s success, ActiveCampaign is your tool. It offers advanced lead scoring capabilities, allowing you to assign scores to leads based on their interactions and engagement. This information can be used to segment your audience and send targeted emails to those most likely to convert.

You can also count on their personalization assets across multiple channels. While SendGrid primarily focuses on email, ActiveCampaign supports multi-channel marketing, including SMS marketing, social media integration, and the ability to create personalized ads on platforms like Facebook and Google.

ActiveCampaign_dashboard

Why is ActiveCampaign a Good SendGrid Alternative?

ActiveCampaign has grown from being just a basic email marketing tool long ago. Here’s where it outdistances SendGrid: 

  • Customizable email templates with eye-catching, professionally designed layouts and elements; 
  • Lead scoring and segmentation for delivering personalized, relevant content to specific audience segments;
  • User behavior tracking beyond email interactions allows to monitor website visits, link clicks, and other actions and use this data to personalize marketing efforts;
  • Extensive resources, including webinars, tutorials, and a knowledge base, help users get the most out of the platform.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
Wide variety of professionally designed email templatesHigher pricing compared to other alternatives
Advanced automation and personalization optionsNot very beginner-friendly
Comprehensive CRMDifferent customer service depending on pricing plans.

Pricing: 

  • Paid plan starts at $49 monthly for email marketing and automation features; 
  • Free trial account is available with feature restrictions and limits. 

5. DRIP – Best Alternative with Advanced Automation

DRIP’s focus on advanced automation and personalization sets it apart from SendGrid as an ideal choice for businesses that require sophisticated email marketing workflows. You need it to create meaningful relationships with your customers and conquer new engagement grounds.

  • Visual workflow builder for creating complex automation sequences;
  • Personalization features for dynamic email content;
  • Behavioral tracking and segmentation for targeted marketing campaigns;
  • Integration with e-commerce platforms for automated sales funnels;
  • Robust analytics and reporting.
drip_logo

DRIP perfectly understands marketers’ struggle in automation and offers an almost too-good-to-be-true solution – a powerful workflow builder for creating complex and highly customized automation sequences. Its segmentation options are also pleasantly surprising, enabling precise targeting based on specific criteria, such as demographics, behavior, or engagement.

Switch from SendGrid and benefit even more in managing advanced email marketing operations, whether it’s leads nurture, abandoned carts recovery, or email marketing streamline you are after.

drip_dashboard

Why is DRIP a Good SendGrid Alternative?

If you’re still in doubt about whether you should leave SendGrid for DRIP, here are a few things to convince you:

  • Automation triggers based on user behavior ensure timely and relevant email communications;
  • Advanced personalization: DRIP offers extensive personalization capabilities, including dynamic content and personalized recommendations, allowing for highly tailored and engaging email campaigns.
  • Advanced eCommerce integration, making it a preferred choice for online businesses looking to leverage email marketing for sales and customer retention;
  • Deep data analytics gives valuable insights into campaign performance, customer behavior, and conversion tracking;
  • Marketing efforts can be easily integrated across various platforms and channels;
  • Strong customer support through different channels, ensuring assistance and guidance when needed.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
Advanced automation capabilitiesLimited CRM features compared to some alternatives
Powerful segmentation and personalization optionsHigher pricing for larger subscriber lists
Powerful analytics dashboardA/B testing is limited

Pricing: 

  • Paid plan starts at $39 per month for 2500 subscribers and unlimited emails; 
  • Free 14-day trial is available. 

6. Mailjet – User-Friendly UI & Email Designs Builder

If you’ve been in the email marketing game for a while now, chances are you’ve crossed Mailjet’s name at least once. It is considered one of the most user-friendly interfaces and intuitive email design builders appreciated by beginners and professionals.

  • Drag-and-drop email builder with responsive templates;
  • Collaboration tools for team-based email creation;
  • Powerful email personalization options;
  • Real-time monitoring and delivery optimization;
  • A/B testing and analytics for campaign optimization.
mailjet_logo

Mailjet is designed with a hassle-free experience in mind. It nicely combines the simplicity of usage with powerful features that meet all your marketing needs. Be sure that with Mailjet, your email campaigns will be effectively targeted, personalized, and efficient without investing much energy in setting them up.

Mailjet might also be the best competitor to SendGrid regarding transactional emails. On the platform, you’ll find an array of pre-made, customizable templates, from account creation notifications to password resets. Mailjet also allows to use our SMTP relay or send API (Application Programming Interface) for transactional emails, meaning that there’s one big thing to think about less. Finally, the tool has a strong reputation for high deliverability rates, ensuring that your emails reach recipients’ inboxes effectively.

mailjet_dashboard

Why is Mailjet a Good SendGrid Alternative?

If transactional emails make up a huge part of your email efforts, you should consider Mailjet over SendGrid for the following reasons:

  • High deliverability rates and strong relationships with ISPs (Identity Service Providers) result in optimized email delivery;
  • The User-friendly interface simplifies the email creation and campaign management process, making it accessible for users of all skill levels;
  • Reputable support of both transactional and marketing emails;
  • Integration with various platforms, CRMs, and e-commerce tools, providing seamless connectivity.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
User-friendly interface and email design builderLimited advanced email editor features and functionalities
Collaboration tools for team-based email creationThe interface is a bit overwhelming for beginners and those with limited technical knowledge
Email API for transactional emailsSlow customer response times or unhelpful assistance reported

Pricing: 

  • Paid plans start at $15 and up to 15000 emails per month; 
  • Free plan is also available with a limit of 200 emails per day.

7. Mailchimp – Best for Landing Page Builders

Mailchimp is probably the most heard among email marketing services offering various features, including a powerful landing page builder. It provides a comprehensive suite of tools to create visually appealing emails and engaging landing pages.

Mailchimp is sometimes used interchangeably with email marketing platforms. But did you know they also have a powerful landing page builder up their sleeve? Using its intuitive interface build engaging, conversion-focused landing pages that are more than easy to integrate into the brand’s email marketing strategy.

  • User-friendly landing page builder;
  • Drag-and-drop email editor with customizable templates;
  • Email marketing automation and personalization options;
  • Real-time analytics and reporting.
mailchimp_logo

Mailchimp’s landing page builder offers a user-friendly drag-and-drop interface, pre-designed templates, and customization options for creating landing pages without coding. It integrates seamlessly with email campaigns, ensuring a cohesive user journey and consistent branding.

Unfortunately, suppose you’re a smaller business looking to capture leads and grow your email list with Mailchimp. Your marketing campaign can become a bit pricey if the company applies an add-on pricing strategy. Evaluating if the money you spend is worth the time and resources you save is highly recommended.

mailchimp_dashboard

Why is Mailchimp a Good SendGrid Alternative?

Let’s summarize why business owners currently using SendGrid might want to move to Mailchimp:

  • The integrated approach allows for a unified marketing strategy and easier management of multiple channels.
  • A wide range of professionally designed landing page templates covering various industries and purposes. 
  • The landing page builder seamlessly integrates with email campaigns. This allows for a cohesive user experience, where subscribers can be directed to dedicated landing pages from email campaigns, increasing engagement and conversions.
  • Easy customization of the landing page look and feel to align with brand identity, reinforcing brand recognition. 
  • Analytics and reporting on landing page performance allow tracking key metrics such as page views, conversions, and bounce rates.

Pros & Cons

ProsCons
Intuitive popup and opt-in form creator Predatory pricing model
User-friendly interface and email editorRestrictive lower-tier plans (advanced features require further payment)
Basic segmentation and automation featuresLimited customer service, especially in lower plans

Pricing: 

  • Paid plan starts at $9.25 per month for up to 500 subscribers and 5000 monthly email sends; 
  • Free plan is also available for up to 1000 monthly email sends. 

Free Alternatives to SendGrid

Leaving SendGrid for little-known, pricey alternatives might feel like jumping out of the frying pan into the fire. Luckily, some reputable platforms allow you to try out most of their features for free and decide based on your experience. Here are the top three worthy of your attention:

Sender

Sender is the best alternative to SendGrid in this bunch. It offers a Forever Free plan with most of the features. It’s more than enough for smaller businesses, as the free plan allows sending up to 15,000 emails to up to 2500 subscribers.

What’s more? You’ll use a powerful drag-and-drop editor and a fully-unlocked automation builder. Without any hidden fees! Upgrade only for future usage when you grow your email list.

Sender’s Free Forever plan includes:

  • An advanced automation workflow builder with behavioral and custom triggers;
  • A drag-and-drop email and a vast library of templates;
  • A popup builder with various templates, including a spin-the-wheel template;
  • Powerful audience segmentation features for personalized campaigns;
  • Exceptional deliverability, helpful support, and much more.

Mailjet

Mailjet is another good free alternative. Their free plan allows you to create and send up to 6000 monthly emails. However, you’ll have to limit your bulk emails to 200 per day. It also has reputable deliverability and email API, so it’s perfect if you plan to send out mainly transactional emails.

However, be aware that the free plan offers only basic automation features and just a few email templates, which might cost you time and effort. 

Mailchimp

Mailchimp’s free plan is also worth a mention. A free sign-up is enough to send up to 1000 emails monthly and manage an email list of 500 subscribers. It’s excellent for exploring the basic Mailchimp platform features like a limited landing page and popup builder. However, consider that additional costs will be added to your need to get more functionalities and grow email lists.

In other words, Mailchimp’s free plan is great for beginners testing out email marketing waters but remains a short-term solution for bigger ambitions.

SendGrid Alternatives: Price & Feature Comparison Table

SenderConstant ContactHubspotActiveCampaignDripMailJetMailchimp
ContactsUp to 2 500 (Free Plan)UnlimitedUp to 1,000 (free plan)100 Contact (free plan)Up to 2500 (Starter Plan)Up to 200 (free plan)Up to 500 (Free Plan)
EmailsUp to 15 000 (Free Plan)Up to 900Up to 2,000 (free plan)100 emails (Free plan)UnlimitedUp to 6,000 (free plan)Up to 1000
Daily limits (Free account)Unlimited300500 per day
Support24/7 Live Chat + EmailEmail-onlyEmail and Live Chat (free plan)Email and Live ChatEmail SupportEmail and Live ChatEmail-only, first 30 days
WordPress Integration+++++++
Email Automation++++++Basic
Email Templates Library++++++Basic
Advanced Segmentation+BasicBasic on Lower Plans+++Basic
Email Scheduling++++++
Advanced Reporting+++++
Geography & device reporting++++
Heat map reporting++
Advanced open & click stats.+++++
Multi-user accessUnlimited1Limited on Lower Plans3 UsersYesLimited on Lower Plans
Pricing$8.33 per month for 2500 subscribers and up to 30k emails per month$12 per month for up to 500 contacts$18 per month for up to 1000 contacts (subscribers)$49 per month for 500 subscribers$39 per month for up to 2500 subscribers$15/month for up to 15000 emails$9.25 per month for 500 subscribers and 5000 emails per month

Key Takeaways: SendGrid Alternatives

  • Search for a solution to your current and future marketing needs and consider how it can help save time;
  • Before moving on from SendGrid, try several platforms to find your best fit;
  • The best way to compare different platforms is to pay attention to pricing and what you get for it, namely features and sending limits;
  • Look for genuine user reviews if you need more persuasion, especially about customer service.

Also read: 


Author’s bio

Vesta Oldenburg is a content writer specializing in email marketing strategies. In her daily work, creativity intertwines with a strategic mindset to create content that captivates its readers.

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