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Email marketing is generally regarded as the most economical way to promote your ecommerce store, foster customer loyalty, and sustain revenue growth. This is especially true now that a significant portion of the work involved can be automated. But to run campaigns efficiently, you need to use the platform that is best suited to your business.
If you’re running an ecommerce store on Shopify, Shopify Email vs Klaviyo is one of the most important comparisons you’ll need to check out. Chances are, one of these two email marketing platforms is exactly what you’re looking for in terms of overall features, pricing, ease of use, and availability of support.
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Both Klaviyo and Shopify Email are comparable in several ways to Omnisend, another top-rated email marketing tool. Omnisend integrates seamlessly with Shopify and lets you automate your marketing on all channels, not just email.
As an ecommerce giant with a platform used by the majority of the most active businesses online, it came as no surprise when Shopify launched its own email marketing tool in 2019. Shopify Email was created by Shopify, for Shopify, so you don’t need to question whether it will integrate perfectly with your store.
But considering that the Shopify email & SMS marketing platform is treated more like a feature rather than as its own product, it’s difficult not to brush it off entirely in preference to more established and proven brands like Klaviyo.
Thousands of businesses have used Klaviyo email marketing for Shopify stores since it launched in 2012. The app is best known for its powerful audience segmentation features, which allow for deep personalization. Now that it has SMS, it even rivals Omnisend as an omnichannel marketing platform.
But should you even consider using a third-party service for your email marketing when Shopify already has its own? Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of both Shopify Email and Klaviyo to make an informed decision.
Shopify Email vs Klaviyo comparison
Klaviyo and Shopify Email are both considered as among the best email marketing apps for Shopify stores. So how do you determine which one best suits your business? Read on for a detailed comparison.
Both Shopify Email and Klaviyo have all the basic features you need to run email marketing campaigns. You can pull up pre-built email templates, populate them with your message, and customize them to suit your brand. You’ll also be able to broadcast your emails to all or selected contacts. Then, you can monitor every campaign’s performance and gather insights on how to improve.
The main advantage of using Shopify’s email tool is that it’s connected to everything on your online store, so it can pull information directly from it. This is incredibly useful when populating your email content blocks. This is also valuable for analytics since all data is seamlessly shared between your store and your email marketing app.
But running Klaviyo email marketing for Shopify has the additional advantage of automated workflows while Shopify email automation has not yet been developed. On Klaviyo, you can set up messages to automatically broadcast when triggered by an event or action.
Additionally, Klaviyo doubles as an SMS marketing channel. You can run SMS campaigns separately or to work in tandem with your emails. When using Shopify Email, you’ll need to use a separate service if you want to reach your customers through text messaging. Neither of the two options has the breadth of channel options as Omnisend, which can be used for email, SMS, web push notifications, and social media advertising.
Since your store is built on Shopify, using Shopify Email will undoubtedly be less expensive. The service is built into every Shopify plan. You get a monthly email allowance of 2,500 emails and would only be charged additional fees for broadcasts beyond that limit.
Shopify Email pricing is cheap at only $1 per 1,000 emails beyond the monthly limit. So even if you send 10,000 emails per month, your additional monthly cost will only be $7.50. The number of subscribers you have doesn’t affect the cost of your plan.
In contrast, pricing is often mentioned as one of Klaviyo’s disadvantages. That’s not to say its value isn’t worth the cost. But if you can’t maximize the use of all its features, it can be too expensive.
Klaviyo lets you use its email platform for free. But that plan limits you to 250 contacts and up to 500 email sends. Beyond those limits, you’ll need to avail yourself of paid plans, which start at $20 per month. As your opt-in list grows, so do your Klaviyo fees. The ability to send SMS is paid for separately.
On paid Klaviyo accounts, you get unlimited email sends until your opt-in list grows beyond 45,000 subscribers. Then, you’ll be limited to 500,000 monthly email sends, which is typically enough even for large enterprises.
Here’s a pricing table to give you a good idea of how much it will cost to use Klaviyo email marketing for Shopify based on your subscriber count:
|Max subscriber count||Klaviyo monthly cost|
It doesn’t take much to see that Klaviyo is definitely the more expensive option. It is even more expensive than the Standard Omnisend plan. At $16 per month on Omnisend, you can already reach up to 500 contacts and send unlimited web push notifications. You’ll also get free credits for up to 60 text messages.
Ease of use
Considering how new the Shopify Email app is, it’s impressive how it has already gained close to a thousand reviews on the Shopify App Store. It has a remarkable overall rating of 4.4 and a quick look at the reviews highlights its simplicity and ease of use.
Unsurprisingly, the Klaviyo app has collected a larger number of reviews (closer to 1,500) but a slightly lower overall rating of 4.2. Like Shopify Email, many satisfied users say Klaviyo is easy to use even for people with no technical or marketing experience.
Although both platforms have outstanding reviews, neither have surpassed the Omnisend Shopify app’s over 4,000 reviews and average 4.7 overall rating. But like the two, ease of use is among the most common praises for Omnisend.
Nevertheless, the advantage of using Shopify Email is that it already works similarly to the rest of the Shopify platform, so you don’t need to spend additional time learning something new. Additionally, its inclusion of only basic email marketing functionalities means there are fewer things you can do on the app, which ultimately means there are fewer things to figure out.
In contrast, Klaviyo’s extensive feature list naturally makes it more difficult to use. But considering your campaigns can be much more powerful on the platform, the extra effort might be worth it.
Design and templates
There’s no Shopify Email vs Klaviyo competition when it comes to available design and templates. Both offer pre-built templates that are easy to customize but Shopify Email only has a handful to choose from. There’s no doubt that Shopify will keep adding to their selection of templates, but it will take a while for them to surpass what Klaviyo has amassed over the past decade.
Klaviyo also has the advantage of Showcase, an online collection of the app’s top-performing designs and campaigns. These are real-world designs used by actual brands and can be a valuable source of inspiration for your own campaigns.
The design quality of Klaviyo’s email templates is much like Omnisend’s and you also get a similar editor where you can add, delete, or move content blocks. However, Omnisend’s content blocks are much more advanced since you can add dynamic content like unique voucher codes and personalized product recommendations.
Shopify email automation is a feature that many look for but hasn’t been developed. In contrast, Klaviyo has long excelled in email marketing automation and has even recently enabled SMS to be included in workflows.
Automations are a huge part of why marketers are willing to pay for Klaviyo. You can build your own automated workflows or use any of the ones already built into the app. Among the most useful pre-built email workflows address cart abandonment, post-purchase follow-ups (e.g., asking for reviews), and customer reactivation.
Klaviyo’s automation features are undeniably powerful and comparable to Omnisend’s. Omnisend’s primary advantage is that its workflows can include push notifications.
Segmentation and personalization
According to Salesforce data, 66% of modern consumers expect brands to understand their individual preferences. Additionally, 52% of shoppers expect to receive incentives that are tailored to their general profile and buying history.
Given these figures, it’s essential to use an email marketing tool with excellent personalization features. Thankfully, both Klaviyo and Shopify Email deliver in this regard.
Personalized email marketing with Shopify Email is facilitated by its smart segmentation feature. The tool automatically classifies your contacts into pre-specified categories. For example, you can have different segments for new shoppers, repeat buyers, and your most loyal customers.
For businesses that require more sophisticated personalization options, Klaviyo’s more advantageous list management features would offer more value. Apart from offering segment suggestions, Klaviyo lets you segment users based on several, more advanced details like buying behaviors and previous campaign participation.
The depth of personalization you can pursue on Klaviyo is much closer to Omnisend. But Omnisend’s omnichannel platform allows you the further advantage of connecting with your customers no matter what medium keeps them most engaged.
Analytics and reporting
Performance tracking is essential to making data-driven decisions for your business. In this regard, Shopify Email is the clear winner. This shouldn’t come as a surprise since it is more deeply connected to your ecommerce store. It can track all interactions and, therefore, is better able to provide reports on the impact of your campaigns on your revenue.
For example, if you wanted to know what products the recipients of a specific campaign bought, it is Shopify Email that can give you that information. In contrast, running Klaviyo email marketing for Shopify stores gives you more basic performance reports like open rates (which are no longer reliable thanks to Apple’s iOS15 changes), click rates, and conversion rates.
Shopify Email’s comprehensive reports are comparable to Omnisend’s advanced reporting features. However, Omnisend’s performance dashboards make campaign data more digestible.
Like Shopify email automation features, email capture forms don’t exist on Shopify Email. If you choose this platform, you’ll need to rely on other apps to build your subscriber list. In contrast, Klaviyo offers more than 50 pre-built templates for different types of opt-in forms. All are easily customizable to reflect your brand, message, and preferred fields.
Klaviyo’s professionally designed and UX-driven form designs are similar to those that Omnised provides. What they currently lack are more interactive form types like Omnisend’s Wheel of Fortune.
The Shopify team provides support for the Shopify Email app, so you can expect the same availability and quality of help you get through their ecommerce platform. It also has an extensive help center filled with clearly written guides and instructions.
Similarly, Klaviyo has a help center that also contains tons of useful guides for its users. But, Klaviyo offers the additional benefit of an active community forum. It also runs the Klaviyo Academy.
Like the Omnisend Academy, Klaviyo offers courses that guide you through making the most out of the platform.
Shopify Email is meant to work on the Shopify Ecommerce platform. Technically, other services that integrate with Shopify can work alongside the email marketing features.
Like Omnisend, Klaviyo works seamlessly with a host of other services. Not only can you use it on other ecommerce platforms (e.g., WooCommerce, BigCommerce, and Magento) but also alongside other tools like payment software (e.g., Strip, Chargebee, and ReCharge) and logistics services (e.g., ShipStation and AfterShip).
In the Shopify Email vs Klaviyo competition, the winner will depend on what you need. It’s undeniable that the Klaviyo email marketing Shopify app gives you access to more features but Shopify Email is much easier to use, not to mention much less costly.
If all you need is a basic email marketing platform for your Shopify store, the Shopify Email app should be sufficient for your needs. You’ll be able to customize emails and communicate with your customers with a certain level of personalization. You’ll also get access to more advanced reporting and analytics.
However, if marketing automation features are important to you, Klaviyo is the definite winner. Klaviyo also gives you more design flexibility, deeper personalization options, and access to tools that will help you grow your subscriber list.
Like Klaviyo, Omnisend will enable you to run your marketing on autopilot but you’ll be able to do so on more channels, including email, SMS, web push, and social media.