Hi friends. If you’re regularly following my blog, you might be knowing that some 8 to 9 months ago, I left blogger for self hosted WordPress. Within a week of migrating, I also parted goodbye to feedburner, which is perhaps the most widely used free email subscription program worldwide. Through this post, I’ll like to share with you the reasons why I moved from feedburner to Mailchimp.
1. With Feedburner you can’t send custom email campaigns to your subscribers
There can be moments when you wish to write a personalized email to your subscribers – like informing about an upcoming contest, a new product, e-book launch or even wishing them on special occasions like New Year and Christmas. If you’re using feedburner and you wish to do this, then sorry mate, feedburner will disappoint you. It doesn’t offer any way to send custom email messages to your subscribers. All that it can do is – sending notifications of new post-updates to your email subscribers (which, essentially all the email marketing softwares do). And that’s it.
Mailchimp, on the other hand, lets you send custom email campaigns to your subscribers. With a variety of layouts and customization options, you can effortlessly send beautifully personalized messages to your subscribers! And, did I mention that it’s free ? 🙂
2. Cluttered and confusing UI
After productivity, it’s the user-interface(design) which determines the usability of a software. The UI of feedburner is so trivial that it appears as if it were designed some 10 years ago and has never been updated since then. It takes 3 clicks and a few scrolls from the dashboard to reach to the list of your email subscribers. Oh dear Google, I love you for the simplicity and beautiful design language of your projects. Why is feedburner an exception?
3. Feedburner gives no comprehensive reporting on sent RSS emails
What’s your list open-rate? (number of subscribers opening your sent email/total number of sent emails). How many and who amongst your email subscribers bothered to open the mail and view your newly published post? Where exactly on the earth are they located? These are some of the stats that can help you design, market and target your content better. But unfortunately, feedburner doesn’t provide such thorough reporting and analysis.
Mailchimp on the other hand, provides you with all such comprehensive reporting and analysis. It even rates your individual subscribers on a 5 star rating scale based on how often they open the sent emails and check your newly published posts. Have a look at these screenshots –
What’s more? It even compares your list open-rate with that of the industry average (the industry/niche you’re in). Can you ask for more?
4. Insipid customer support at Feedburner
Visit the forum help section of feedburner and you’ll notice how the users are bogged down with common bugs like number of subscribers dropping down to zero! Day before yesterday when I was viewing the feed-stats for my photography site, I was not even able to view the list of email subscribers – the option was mysteriously missing! The support staff also doesn’t seem to take much interest in addressing these issues. Have a look at this screenshot –
5. No developer support
Feedburner has not seen any significant new feature addition and update since years. I understand that it is a completely free program and Google doesn’t earn anything of it. But still, because it’s a Google product, I expected the same level of quality as that of the other free products offered by the search giant.
6. And…after google reader, can you really trust Google?
Google Reader, the most popular RSS feed aggregator was shut down by Google on July 1, 2013, citing declining usage. Google Reader is not alone, in fact, there are around 19 more services that have been discontinued by Google up-till now. Adsense for feeds has already retired and Feedburner’s twitter account is no more active. Let’s see how long can feedburner survive? 🙂
To help you make informed decision regarding which service to choose, I’m making a comparison of Feedburner and MailChimp in this table below –
|Cost||Free (any number of subscribers, any number of emails)||Free (till you are sending 12000 emails per month. After that it costs 10 to 25$ per month)|
|Feed notifications to email subscribers||Yes||Yes|
|Custom email campaigns||No||Yes|
|Ease of use/UI||Poor||Good|
Which email marketing service do you use, and Why?
Is it feedburner? Mailchimp? Or Aweber? Which one do you prefer and why? I would love to see your comments here 🙂