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12 Best Marketing Automation Software Tools (2024 Comparison)

Looking for the best marketing automation tools? You’re in the right place.

Marketing automation involves using software to complete routine, repetitive marketing tasks—like email marketing, social media posting, etc.—without the need for an actual human to do the work.

Not only does this improve efficiency, but it can save you a ton of time and money, and deliver better, more personalized customer experiences to boot.

In this post, we’ll review and compare the 12 best marketing automation tools on the market.

The best marketing automation tools – comparison

#1 – ActiveCampaign

ActiveCampaign is our top pick for the overall best automation software on the market this year. It can automate pretty much everything from contact scoring to email campaigns, reporting, and beyond.

ActiveCampaign Automation HomepagePin

The core of ActiveCampaign is its automation workflow builder, which is seamlessly integrated with the platform’s email marketing and CRM tools.

There are pre-built automation recipes that you can customize in the workflow builder, or you can just start from scratch. In the workflow builder, you add actions and triggers to tell ActiveCampaign what you want it to do, and when you want to do it. 

For example, if a customer buys a product from your Shopify store, add +10 points to their lead score, send a thank you email, and notify the sales team.

You can also use branching logic to send different contacts down different paths depending on their attributes.

For example, if a contact has a lead score of 50+, send them a special discount offer email. Otherwise, send them a regular newsletter. 

My favorite of ActiveCampaign’s marketing automation features, though, has to be the Automations Map tool. It gives you a birds-eye view of all your marketing and sales automations on one page and shows you how they all connect to each other.

This is invaluable for businesses that have complex processes and run lots of automations in tandem, as it makes it easier to identify bottlenecks and adjust your strategy without accidentally breaking anything.

Key features

  • Automate email marketing: Build automated email sequences like abandoned cart reminders and welcome emails
  • Automate contact management: Automatically score and tag contacts in your CRM when they complete certain actions or meet certain requirements
  • Automate reporting: Automatically build and deliver email reports that display all the important data about your marketing campaigns.
  • Automation mapping: See how all your automations connect together in one easy-to-understand dashboard
  • Dynamic content: Personalize your marketing automations by delivering content that’s optimized for individual contacts and audience segments.

Pricing

Plans start from $39/month or $29/month if you pay yearly. Get started with a 14-day free trial.

Read our ActiveCampaign review.

#2 – MailerLite

MailerLite has the best free plan of any marketing automation software we’ve tried, so it’s a good choice if you’re not ready to invest in a paid tool just yet.

MailerLite Automation HomepageMailerLite Automation HomepagePin

The free version of MailerLite gives you full access to the email automation builder, as well as the drag-and-drop email editor and landing page/form/popup builder.

You can use it to automate up to 12,000 email sends per month for free, for up to 1,000 subscribers, which should be more than enough for new businesses. You’ll only need to pay for unlimited monthly emails or more subscribers.

I love how easy MailerLite’s automation builder is to use. Too often, automation software looks complex and intimidating. But MailerLite’s simple, clean UI makes it a breeze to work with, even for complete beginners.

You start by adding your triggers. These are the ‘entry points’ to your automation—the things contacts have to do for the workflow to run. For example, a trigger could be when a subscriber joins a group, fills in a form, or clicks a link; or just when a specific date is reached. You can have up to three triggers as entry points for a single workflow. 

Then, you specify the actions you want MailerLite to run, and the order you want to run them in. Often, an action will be to send a specific email.

For example, let’s say you’re building a welcome email sequence. Your automation workflow might look something like this: 

Subscriber joins list ‘New Subscribers’ > Send ‘Welcome to the Club’ email > Wait 2 days > Send ‘Discount’ email > Wait 2 days…

You get the idea. And what’s really cool is the workflow builder is connected to the drag-and-drop email builder, so you can create the emails that form part of your automations without leaving the page, and visually preview them in the workflow itself.

Key features

  • Automate email sequences: Create triggered email automations like welcome sequences, re-engagement automations, etc.
  • Automate ecommerce: Connect MailerLite to your ecommerce store to build ecommerce automations like abandoned cart reminders, post-purchase upsells and cross-sells, and more.
  • A/B split testing: Experiment with your automations by A/B testing up to 3 workflow variations with different subject lines, content, and send times.
  • Automation history and reporting: Track the complete history of every automation and see where subscribers currently are in each of your workflows with activity reporting

Pricing

Free marketing automation tools available. Paid plans start from $10/month, save 10% with yearly billing.

Read our MailerLite review.

#3 – Omnisend

Omnisend is the best marketing automation software for ecommerce. Use it to automate your marketing communications across multiple channels, nurture leads, and convert more leads to customers.

Omnisend Automation HomepageOmnisend Automation HomepagePin

My favorite thing about Omnisend is its pre-built automation recipe library. 

It’s full of the kind of automation templates that ecommerce businesses need. So, you can roll out things like automated product/cart abandonment reminders, order confirmation emails, shipping confirmation emails, post-purchase upsells, and more in a couple of clicks.

And if you need to make any adjustments to these pre-built workflows, you can do so easily in the drag-and-drop Automation Editor.

The other thing I like about Omnisend is that, unlike a lot of other tools, it doesn’t just offer email automation. You can also automate SMS messages, push notifications, Facebook Messenger messages, and more in a single workflow. That’s where the name comes from—Omnisend, for omnichannel marketing.

The platform integrates with all the major ecommerce solutions like Shopify and WooCommerce, as well as lots of other 3rd party tools. 

And what’s cool is that you can actually pull data from 3rd party platforms into Omnisend and use it as a trigger in your automation workflows. 

For example, if you connect Omnisend to a shipment tracking service, you’ll be able to build automations that send out an email to your customers to let them know when the product has been shipped. 

Key features

  • Ecommerce automation: Automatically send out ecommerce communications like order confirmations and abandoned cart emails, with pre-built ecommerce automation recipes.
  • Omnichannel automation: Automate your marketing communications across email, SMS, web push, and social messaging services.
  • Personalized automations: Personalize your cross-sells with dynamic product recommendations and content blocks tailored to reach customer
  • A/B testing: Split test your automations to experiment with different channels, subject lines, and content and figure out which versions drive the most conversions.

Pricing

Free plan is available. Paid plans start from $16/month.

Read our Omnisend review.

#4 – Brevo

Brevo is an all-in-one platform that offers marketing automation, plus lots of other tools to help you create emails, landing pages, signup forms, ad campaigns, and more.

Brevo Automation HomepageBrevo Automation HomepagePin

Given Brevo’s broad feature set, it’s pretty good value for money. Plans are super affordable, and there’s a decent free plan that will do the job if you’re just getting started.

Regardless of which plan you sign up for, you can have unlimited contacts in Brevo’s CRM and have full access to the workflow editor, which you use to build your automations.

I like that Brevo offers page tracking, so you can track what contacts do on your website and use that information to send the right messages to them at the perfect time.

It also offers automated lead scoring and ‘smart segmentation’, so you can automatically sort the contacts in your list into distinct segments based on attributes like their behavior and interests.

Then, you can target each segment in your workflows and send them personalized emails, push notifications, and SMS messages automatically.

Key features

  • Lead scoring automation: Score your leads based on different attributes and customer data points automatically so you can prioritize high-quality prospects.
  • Transactional emails: Trigger transactional emails when customers make a purchase on your site
  • Marketing message automation: Send SMS messages, emails, and WhatsApp notifications to your contacts automatically.

Pricing

Free plan is available. Paid plans start from $25/month.

Read our Brevo review.

#5 – GetResponse

GetResponse is another affordable marketing automation platform with lots of useful features.

GetResponse Automation HomepageGetResponse Automation HomepagePin

Its Email Marketing plan is super affordable and lets you set up basic email autoresponders. You can use the AI-powered email builder and template library to create all your emails and utilize event-based triggering to deliver them to your contacts automatically, at the right time.

For more advanced automations, you’ll need to subscribe to GetResponse’s Marketing Automation plan. It’s a little pricier but gives you access to the drag-and-drop workflow builder, which you can use to build much more sophisticated and personalized automations.

GetResponse also comes with the tools you need to collect new leads, like sign-up forms, live chats, landing pages, and popups. You can use automations to trigger popups and live chats at the perfect time and to automatically score, tag, and segment your new leads.

Key features

  • Email autoresponders: Welcome and engage with new contacts automatically through AI-powered email sequences.
  • Automated product recommendations: Send out product recommendations that are personalized for each contact based on their preferences, needs, and the actions they’ve taken on your store.
  • Automated lead management: Automatically add tags to your contacts, score them, and segment your list.

Pricing

Free plan available. Paid plans start from $19/month, discounts are available with longer billing periods. 

Read our GetResponse review.

#6 – ManyChat

ManyChat is the best marketing automation software for social media marketers. 

ManyChat Automation HomepageManyChat Automation HomepagePin

It acts as a chatbot and replies to all your DMs and comments on Instagram, as well as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp for you around the clock.

So, you never have to worry about a new lead slipping away. It’s there to answer all comments and queries 24/7 even when you’re offline.

Building your automations with ManyChat is super easy thanks to the fully-customizable, plug-and-play templates. There’s also a built-in AI Assistant that can create your automation flows for you—just provide a short description of your business and let it know the use case you want to automate, and it’ll do the rest.

You can build unlimited custom flows for Instagram, Facebook, and Instagram for free (for up to 1,000 contacts). But if you want to send out automated emails and SMS messages, you’ll need to upgrade to a paid plan.

Key features

  • Chat automation: Reply to messages on Instagram, Facebook, and Instagram automatically 24 hours a day.
  • Email & SMS marketing automation: Send out marketing messages over email and SMS with a paid plan.
  • AI Assistant: Build your automation flows easily with the help of an advanced AI writing assistant.

Pricing

Free plan is available. Paid plans start from $15/month.

#7 – ConvertKit

ConvertKit is a feature-rich marketing automation software that’s built for creators.

ConvertKit Automation HomepageConvertKit Automation HomepagePin

I really like ConvertKit’s Visual Automations tool. It’s pretty intuitive and easy to work with: You create automation paths by chaining up triggers with events, actions, and conditions.

And what’s cool is that you can edit your email content from inside the automations builder, so you don’t need to open multiple tabs and switch between different tools.

For example, let’s say you’re building an automation that sends out a newsletter to contacts that have the newsletter tag. Just click on the event in your workflow and it’ll open up the email builder in the same window on the right, where you can edit the content.

If you don’t want to build your automations from scratch, there are pre-built templates for things like re-engagement sequences, welcome emails, etc. Or if you just want to build a very simple automation, you can use the ‘if this, then that’ automation rules feature instead of building a whole workflow.

I also love that you can click on any automation you’ve built in ConvertKit to see at a glance how many contacts are in each step at any given point. 

In addition to marketing automations, you can also use ConvertKit to build landing pages, forms, and more.

Key features

  • Automation Rules. A simple way to build automations using if/then rules, i.e. ‘When Trigger X happens, do Action Y’.
  • Visual Automations. A more powerful way to create automations using a visual workflow builder.
  • Email marketing automation. Build beautiful marketing emails and send them out automatically as part of your visual automations workflow.
  • Contact automation. Add tags to different contacts, set custom field values, and subscribe/unsubscribe them to sequences automatically when they take certain actions.

Pricing

Free plan is available. Paid plans start from $15/month, get two months free with yearly billing.

Read our ConvertKit review.

#8 – Freshmarketer

Freshmarketer is another solid marketing automation software solution for small businesses. It gives you all the tools you need to automatically engage with customers across multiple channels: Email, SMS, WhatsApp, live chat, and social media.

Freshworks Automation HomepageFreshworks Automation HomepagePin

Freshmarketer comes with 20+ ecommerce journey templates. These are pre-built automations for common use cases like order confirmations, abandoned cart reminders, post-purchase feedback, etc.

You can customize templates in the drag-and-drop journeys editor or just build them from scratch. It works the same way as most other workflow builders: Just drag and drop triggers, actions, conditions, and controls onto the screen to create your flow.

Freshmarketer also comes with lots of other tools to help you better understand your audience, so you can create more personalized automations. That includes site tracking, a CRM, heat mapping, journey tracking, segmentation, and more.

Key features

  • Segment automation: Automatically create segments based on your contacts’ site and purchase history, demographics, attributes, etc.
  • Ecommerce automation: Use pre-built ecommerce journeys to convert and engage with customers.
  • Email automation: Automatically create and deliver marketing emails and transactional emails.
  • Chatbot automation: Engage with your customers through automated chatbots.

Pricing

Free plan is available. Paid plans start from $19/month.

#9 – Keap

Keap is a marketing automation tool that caters to the top end of the market. It’s expensive, with a much higher starting price than some of the other solutions on this list, but it could be worth it if you have the budget for it.

Keap Automation HomepageKeap Automation HomepagePin

Keap is an all-in-one sales and marketing automation solution, so it’s very feature-rich. It comes with all the tools you need to collect new leads, organize them, nurture them, and turn them into customers.

Some of the things you can automate with Keap include:

  • Appointment booking
  • Invoice reminders
  • Deal/pipeline management
  • Contact management
  • SMS
  • Emails
  • Appointment booking
  • Team task assignment

Keap actually provides two tools for building automations: Easy Automations and Advanced Automations.

Easy Automations is a tool that lets you create automations using simple ‘When/Then/Stop’ rules. In other words, you just tell Keap ‘When X occurs, start the automation. Then, do Y, and Stop when Z happens.’

The ‘When’ can be any action a lead takes (e.g. submitting a form on your website) or an action your team takes (e.g. moving a deal into the next stage).

The ‘Then’ can be any action you want to perform automatically. That might be to send a call booking link or invoice reminder to the contact, or to deliver a marketing email or a text. If you want, you can also build in a delay by telling Keap to wait a set amount of time before performing the action.

The ‘Stop’ is the thing you want to stop the automation from running. For example, if you’ve set up automated invoice reminders to be sent out every week, you’ll want it to stop when the client pays.

Advanced Automations is a workflow builder that lets you create visual automation flows. It has a higher learning curve than Easy Automations but once you get the hang of it, it’s much more powerful.

Key features

  • CRM automation: Lead organization, contact management, etc.
  • Sales automations: Close pending and existing deals, manage your sales pipeline, send invoices and payment reminders, etc.
  • Marketing automations: Collect and nurture leads with SMS and email marketing messages.

Pricing

Plans start from $199/month, save 20% with yearly billing. Get started with a 14-day free trial.

#10 – HubSpot

HubSpot is one of the most popular and feature-rich platforms on the market. It offers all the tools businesses need in one place, including marketing automation.

Hubspot Automation HomepageHubspot Automation HomepagePin

HubSpot’s pricing is a little confusing. Because it’s such a comprehensive marketing automation tool, it’s actually split into several different software packages.

There’s the core CRM, which is free, and comes with some basic form and email automation tools. But to unlock the full power of marketing automation, you’ll need to sign up for one of the Marketing Hub plans.

There’s also a Sales Hub, Commerce Hub, Operations Hub, etc. priced separately, and all of them integrate with the core CRM. Combining all these different tools in one place unlocks lots of interdepartmental automation possibilities that you might not be able to achieve using separate tools.

You can use HubSpot’s visual automation editor to build automated email and SMS campaigns. Plus, set up webhooks, score leads, send out task reminders, trigger internal notifications, and much more.

There’s also a bot builder you can use to automate communications with customers while they’re on your website and lots of other useful tools.

My biggest gripe with HubSpot is that it has a bit of a learning curve. It can take a while to work out how everything works and master the platform, but there are free tutorial videos in HubSpot Academy that can help.

Key features

  • Automate email campaigns: Build beautiful emails and deliver them automatically through triggered drip campaigns.
  • Automate processes: Improve productivity by automating tasks like lead scoring, internal notifications, and task reminders.
  • Automate sales: Create deals and follow up with prospects automatically

Pricing

Free tools are available. Paid plans start from $20/month, save 10% with yearly billing.

#11 – Constant Contact

Constant Contact is a simple but powerful email newsletter software with built-in automation tools. Use it to create and deliver beautiful, branded newsletters and autoresponders.

Constant Contact Automation HomepageConstant Contact Automation HomepagePin

Constant Contact’s list-building tools help you to quickly grow your list. Then, you can segment that list and start sending out targeted messages with the help of the platform’s email designer and marketing automation tools.

My favorite feature is the ‘resend to non-openers’ automations—it’s a great way to improve your average email open rates for very little effort.

All you have to do is tick a box, and Constant Contact will automatically detect which of your contacts fail to open the email, and then automatically resend it to them with a fresh new subject line. 

Key features

  • Automated emails: Quickly and easily set up email autoresponders, and automatically resend emails to non-openers.
  • Automated SMS messages: Use the automation path builder to send out triggered SMS communications.
  • Ecommerce automations: Connect Constant Contact to your ecommerce store for ecommerce automations like abandoned cart reminders.

Pricing

Plans start from $12/month. Get started with a free trial.

#12 – Wishpond

Wishpond is the last marketing automation software on this list. It’s another all-in-one platform with all the tools you need to run effective digital marketing campaigns, including marketing and sales automation.

Wishpond Automation HomepageWishpond Automation HomepagePin

With Wishpond, you can build workflows that automatically send welcome emails, abandoned cart reminders, and follow-up sequences to all your customers. Messages can be personalized to different contacts based on their demographics and activity to help you achieve better results.

Plus, you can also use automations to get notified by email, SMS, or Slack whenever new leads come through so you can respond quickly before they slip away.

In addition to automations, you can also use Wishpond to build landing pages, funnels, and even complete websites. Plus, use the advanced reporting tools to track and measure the results of your campaigns and optimize your marketing strategy.

Key features

  • Automated email sequences: Send out welcome emails, email nurturing sequences, and more automatically.
  • Automated notifications: Receive automatic alerts through SMS, email, and Slack when you get a new lead.
  • Automated contact management: Collect and label leads as they come in automatically, and segment them into optimized lists.

Pricing

Plans start from $49/month when billed annually. Get started with a 14-day free trial.

Final thoughts

That concludes our roundup of the 12 best marketing automation tools.

As you can see, there are lots of options to choose from. The best choice for you will depend on what specific tasks you want to automate, the features you need, and your budget. 

If you only want to automate your social media marketing efforts, see these social media automation tools. Or if you just want to automate your email marketing campaigns, you might like these email automation tools.

Don’t forget to check out our marketing automation stats roundup to learn more about how businesses are using marketing automation effectively this year.


Disclosure: Our content is reader-supported. If you click on certain links we may make a commission.