Klaviyo vs Mailchimp: Which One’s Right For Your Business

Written by: Garin Hobbs

Published on: 06-15-2024

When you’re looking to take your email marketing to the next level, Mailchimp and Klaviyo are both great options. They allow you to manage subscriber lists, automate workflows, segment your audience, and loads more.

However, there are big differences between them. This means they’re suited to different types of businesses.

In this guide, we compare Klaviyo and Mailchimp side-by-side to help you choose the right email marketing platform for your business.

Klaviyo is best for relatively experienced email marketers within the e-commerce sector.

Mailchimp is best for small businesses and beginners. If you’re new to email marketing, its user-friendly interface flattens the learning curve and makes it easy to build your campaign.

Klaviyo Vs Mailchimp: Tabular Comparison

Feature Klaviyo Mailchimp
Target User Ecommerce Brands Small Businesses
Learning Curve Steep learning curve. Interface is more complex than Mailchimp.  Interface is easy to learn and navigate. Good option for beginners
Digital marketing channels Focused on two channels only: SMS and email marketing. It works on a Multi-channel marketing approach. Alongside SMS and email marketing, you can also create landing pages and social media posts.
E-commerce features Primarily designed for e-commerce businesses Offers several of the same e-commerce features but much more limited than Klaviyo’s.
Analytics & Reporting Advanced Basic
Email creation & design Klaviyo’s block-based editor allows for more customization Mailchimp allows for fairly limited customization
List management Advanced Basic

Klaviyo Vs Mailchimp: Shared Features

As they’re both email marketing platforms there are, naturally, many similarities between Mailchimp and Klaviyo. They share several key features designed to help businesses launch and manage their email marketing campaigns.

So, let’s take a look at the features they share and how these features work on each platform.

List management

Klaviyo vs mailchimp list management review

List management is a vital part of any email marketing campaign and, as you’d expect, it’s a key focus for both platforms.

However, Klaviyo’s list management tools are definitely more advanced than Mailchimp’s more basic offerings.

For instance, Klaviyo has a built-in tool for list cleaning which allows you to remove inactive subscribers from your list. Inactive subscribers are classed as those who haven’t made a purchase or opened your emails in 6 months.

List cleaning is beneficial as it means fewer of your emails will be treated as spam by recipients who aren’t interested in them. This helps to improve your ISP reputation which contributes to better email deliverability.

Mailchimp’s list management feature doesn’t include a list-cleaning tool. It also uses static lists, so you need to manually remove users when they become inactive or unsubscribe.

Klaviyo, on the other hand, automatically removes inactive and unsubscribed contacts from your list.

Clearly, if automated list management is important to you, Klaviyo is a much better option than Mailchimp.

Email creation & design

Klaviyo vs mailchimp email creation and design review

Both Mailchimp and Klaviyo provide drag-and-drop email builders that make it easy to create eye-catching email designs.

The main difference between the two is that Klaviyo’s block-based editor allows for more customization of styles, layout, and content, while Mailchimp allows for fairly limited customization.

Several users on Capterra mention how impressed they are with Klaviyo’s email creation and design tools. Just take a look at this quote from Grandhi V’s review.:

“It’s great that eye-catching banners and images can be designed as per our imagination for my email posts, social media boosting, etc. I can use this tool to easily show my design creativity using the creative assistant in the content studio.”

Klaviyo also has cutting-edge personalization features like AI-generated subject lines, which can help to improve your open rates (percentage of recipients who open your emails).

Still, although Mailchimp isn’t as advanced in this area, it does include guided templates which are really user-friendly. These templates give your emails a structured layout and include helpful tips to make email creation as straightforward as possible.

Email marketing automation

Klaviyo vs mailchimp email marketing automation review

Automation should be a standard offering from any decent email marketing platform, and both platforms excel here.

Mailchimp allows you to build automated journeys with time delays, triggers, and conditional splits. This means you can create a sophisticated email marketing campaign that’s personalized and responsive to subscriber behavior.

Klaviyo’s email marketing automation tools allow you to do all that and more. We were particularly impressed with its pre-built templates and flows. They serve as a blueprint for your automations and save you from having to build them from scratch.

Mailchimp doesn’t have automation templates so you have to create them yourself. If you only have a handful of contacts, this isn’t such a big deal. But, if you have a huge email list, creating automations with Mailchimp is very time-consuming.


klaviyo mailchimp integration

When it comes to integrations, there isn’t too much to separate the platforms. They can both be integrated with 300+ third-party applications including e-commerce platforms and CRM systems.

Since Klaviyo is specifically designed for e-commerce businesses, you’d expect its e-commerce integrations to be better than Mailchimp’s.

However, like Klaviyo, Mailchimp can also be integrated with minor and major e-commerce platforms. This includes Shopify, WooCommerce, and Wix.

Plus, Mailchimp can be integrated with other well-known apps like Vimeo, Canva, and Google Analytics. Somewhat surprisingly, Klaviyo can’t be integrated with these apps.

So far, we’d say this is the first feature where Mailchimp probably comes out on top.

Analytics & reporting

Klaviyo vs mailchimp analytics and reporting review

Both platforms have tools for analyzing your email marketing campaign and providing you with reports.

If your analytical needs are fairly simple, then Mailchimp’s tools should be enough. They give you general performance data and some subscriber info. It might not be very detailed, but you can still monitor your open rates, click rates, and unsubscribe rates.

To be honest, the Klaviyo analytics feature is miles ahead. You get access to several overview dashboards packed with customer data, metrics, and graphs about your campaign’s performance.

This is great but the best thing about it is that you can create your own custom dashboards. By doing so, you’re able to view data for the metrics that are most important to your business.

For example, you can view:

  • Spam complaint rates
  • Bounce rates
  • Click-through rates (CTR)
  • Placed order rates
  • Average cart size
  • Placed order rate

And much more!

Klaviyo also combines machine learning with data science to create a predictive analytics feature that gives you amazing insights into your data. Among other things, this feature can:

  • Give you past and total lifetime customer values
  • Predict the future lifetime value of customers
  • Predict a customer’s next order date
  • Give you a customer’s estimated churn risk (the likelihood a customer will stop making purchases or using your services)

Currently, Mailchimp doesn’t offer any predictive analytics features.

Free plans & pricing

Both Mailchimp and Klaviyo have pretty generous free plans, but we’d say that Klaviyo’s is a bit better.

For example, Klaviyo’s free plan allows you to use its pre-built marketing automations but Mailchimp restricts these to its paid plans. Still, Mailchimp’s free plan does allow you to add up to 500 contacts while Klaviyo’s only allows for 250.

In terms of paid plans, the pricing structure for both is based on the number of contacts you have. So, the more you have, the pricier it gets.

Here’s a breakdown of the pricing plans for the two platforms:


  • Essentials (500 contacts): $13 per month
  • Standard (500 contacts): $20 per month
  • Premium (10,000 contacts): $350 per month


  • Email (up to 500 contacts): $20 per month
  • Email and SMS marketing (up to 500 contacts & 1,250 monthly SMS credits): $35 per month

Klaviyo’s prices vary widely depending on the number of contacts you have and the number of SMS credits you want.

You can probably tell that this can get quite confusing, as this user review from Brandon E. demonstrates:

The pricing structure is confusing. Auto upgrades after hitting a certain amount of sends, but then also charges based on the number of active profiles. If it were a straight-up Cost Per Send, it would be easier to manage as a budget expense.

Mailchimp’s pricing plan is a bit more straightforward and the pricing section on its website clearly lists all the features you get with each plan.

For example, with Mailchimp’s Essentials Plan, some of the things you get are:

  • 24/7 email and chat support
  • A/B testing
  • Behavioral targeting
  • Dynamic content
  • Forms and landing pages
  • SMS messages

Mailchimp Vs Klaviyo: The Differences

Clearly, both Mailchimp and Klaviyo have some of the best features in the email marketing space. While they do have a lot in common, there are some areas where the two greatly differ from each other.

Let’s take a look at how the two compare in terms of segmentation, learning curve, digital marketing channels, and e-commerce features.



Both platforms allow you to segment your audience based on various conditions. However, Mailchimp offers much more limited segmentation than Klaviyo.

In fact, Klaviyo’s segmentation feature is so much more advanced than Mailchimp’s that it almost feels like a totally different feature.

With Mailchimp, you can manually segment your audience by activity, engagement, and location. Plus, you can use its segment builder feature to select pre-set segments or build your own segments using certain conditions like personal info and signup source.

This is useful, especially for beginners, but there aren’t a huge number of conditions for you to choose from.

On the other hand, Klaviyo’s segmentation feature gives you access to unlimited conditions. So, you can easily create your own custom segments based on the specifications that are most important to your business.

Additionally, Klaviyo comes with a wide range of pre-set filters and segments that can sort new subscribers into different groups automatically. For instance, those who subscribe to your SMS marketing channel will be automatically segmented.

This allows you to successfully target different audience segments with welcome messages, offers, and newsletters that are highly relevant to them.

Learning curve

Learning Curve

You may have noticed a recurring theme in this review: Klaviyo is a more advanced platform than Mailchimp. This is certainly the case and while Klaviyo’s advanced features offer many benefits, they do also mean that the platform is harder to get used to.

For example, Klaviyo’s interface is much more customizable than Mailchimp’s. This allows you to build advanced workflows and deliver highly relevant and targeted content to your subscribers.

Yet, if you don’t have much technical understanding of email marketing, you might struggle to get to grips with the powerful tools the platform provides.

Mailchimp’s interface is more basic and less customizable which means there’s also a much gentler learning curve. So, if you’re a beginner with little experience in email marketing, Mailchimp is a great place to start.

However, experienced email marketers may find its relative simplicity a bit frustrating. For those users, Klaviyo is definitely the better option.

Digital marketing channels

Digital marketing channels

Having said all that, Mailchimp is definitely more advanced than Klaviyo when it comes to creating a multi-channel marketing strategy.

For instance, you can use Mailchimp’s email builder to create ads and organic posts for Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. This allows you to post your newsletters across your social media channels to increase traffic to your site and get more users to subscribe to your email list.

You can also use Mailchimp’s landing page builder to design customized landing pages which can be combined with your email marketing efforts. With the paid plans, you get access to unlimited landing page subdomains as well as landing page analytics like clicks, visitors, and conversions.

Klaviyo’s platform is focused on two channels: SMS and email marketing. While it excels at both, it means your marketing channels will be limited if you rely solely on Klaviyo. As a result, Mailchimp is definitely the best option if you’re looking to take a multi-channel marketing approach.

E-commerce features

Ecommerce features

Klaviyo is primarily designed for e-commerce businesses. As you’d expect, this means Klaviyo has a more comprehensive set of e-commerce features than Mailchimp.

For example, Klaviyo can automatically send behavioral trigger emails based on things like:

  • Abandoned carts,
  • Purchasing history,
  • And a customer’s product preferences.

You can also segment your e-commerce customers by customer lifetime value, browsing behavior, and purchase history. Then, you can create automated emails to welcome new customers, recover abandoned carts, and launch win-back campaigns aimed at customers who haven’t made a purchase for a while.

Plus, Kalviyo makes it easy to create automated transactional emails containing info such as shipping notifications, order confirmations, and password resets.

While Mailchimp offers several of the same e-commerce features, they’re much more limited than Klaviyo’s. For instance, Klaviyo allows you to apply predictive analytics to your e-commerce customer data, so you can target high-value customers. You can use customer data, like next order date, to create highly granular segmentation too.

However, Mailchimp’s more basic analytics mean you’re unable to segment your e-commerce audience in such a detailed way.

Still, we must say that we were pretty impressed with Mailchimp’s e-commerce features, considering it’s not primarily aimed at e-commerce businesses.

Klaviyo Pros and Cons

Klaviyo’s main pros and cons are:


  • Comprehensive e-commerce features: It’s ideal for e-commerce businesses as it includes features like purchase history segmentation, abandoned cart recovery emails, and automated transactional emails.
  • Granular segmentation: This allows you to create highly targeted segments based on many different data points.
  • Predictive analytics: Uses a combination of machine learning and data science to predict things like next order date and churn risk.
  • Pre-built automation templates: Provides you with templates for creating automated email workflows which saves time and effort.
  • Highly customizable email designs: Its block-based editor makes it easy to customize your email style, layout, and content.
  • Automated list management: Improves deliverability by automatically removing unsubscribed and inactive contacts.


  • Steep learning curve: Its interface is more complex than Mailchimp’s which can make it challenging for beginners.
  • Potentially expensive: Depending on the number of contacts and features you require, it can get pretty expensive. Plus, the pricing structures are a little confusing.
  • Limited marketing channels: Klaviyo is focused on SMS and email marketing. For social media marketing and paid advertising, you’ll need to combine it with an additional tool.

Mailchimp Pros and Cons

Mailchimp’s main pros and cons are:


  • Multi-channel marketing: Alongside SMS and email marketing, you can also create landing pages and social media posts.
  • User-friendly interface: It’s a good option for beginners as the interface is easy to learn and navigate.
  • Integrations: It integrates with over 300 third-party apps including CRM systems, e-commerce platforms, and social media platforms.
  • Clear pricing structure: Unlike Klaviyo, the pricing structure is simple and easy to understand. You can see a list of all the features you get with each plan on the Mailchimp site.
  • Solid e-commerce features: For a non-e-commerce-focused platform, its e-commerce features are surprisingly robust. You can send transactional emails, abandoned cart recovery emails, and more.


  • Time-consuming automation: Unlike Klaviyo, Mailchimp doesn’t provide automation templates. So, you have to build them from scratch which can take a long time.
  • Basic list management: Mailchimp has no built-in tools for list cleaning so you have to do it all manually.
  • Fairly simple analytics: Although it does provide some analytics data, its analytics aren’t predictive and it lacks insights like customer lifetime value and churn risk.

Who Is Klaviyo Best For?

It allows for highly advanced segmentation which enables you to target your campaigns with pinpoint accuracy. As a result, you can get more subscribers, more site traffic, higher click numbers, and increased revenue.

However, Klaviyo’s advanced features lead to a fairly complex interface which can be overwhelming for beginners with little email marketing experience.

Who Is Mailchimp Best For?

Its templates and guided features mean that even the most inexperienced of email marketers can create targeted, multi-channel strategies that can increase revenue.

Plus, at just $13 per month, the Essentials Plan can provide you with a really good ROI.

Still struggling to find the right Email Service Provider (ESP) for your business? At Inbox Army, we offer an ESP evaluation service that helps match your business with the perfect ESP.

We use an in-depth process of requirements building, testing, demos, and consultation to find an ESP that can supercharge your email marketing campaign.

Klaviyo Vs Mailchimp: Final Verdict

Overall, Mailchimp and Klaviyo are both excellent email marketing platforms, and it’s not a case of one being better than the other.

Ultimately, which one is right for you depends on your business type, the specific needs of your business, and your previous digital marketing experience.

For beginners and small businesses, we’d recommend Mailchimp as it has a gentler learning curve and is easier to get the hang of. For e-commerce businesses with more complex requirements, Klaviyo is the better option as it allows for granular segmentation and detailed customization.

Klaviyo Vs Mailchimp FAQs

Are Klaviyo and Mailchimp HIPAA compliant?

Unfortunately, Mailchimp isn’t HIPAA compliant. This means you can’t use it to send emails containing Protected Health Information (PHI), unless authorized to do so by the subject of the PHI.

Klaviyo is compliant with HIPAA. However, its compliance is restricted and it can’t be used for medical marketing campaigns.

Do both platforms offer good customer support?

Yes, both Mailchimp and Klaviyo provide good customer support. Yet, there are some key differences. For example, Klaviyo offers 24/7 live chat support and email support to its customers on paid and free plans.

Mailchimp offers live chat, email, and phone support but the level of support varies depending on which plan you have. This means users with more expensive plans tend to receive better customer support.

It should be noted that many user reviews online complain about the poor response times from the customer support teams from both platforms. Still, there are more positive reviews of their support teams than negative ones.

Do Klaviyo and Mailchimp let you track spam emails?

No, Klaviyo and Mailchimp can’t tell you how many of your sent emails land in spam folders. However, they can tell you how many of your sent emails reach recipients’ inboxes. This is because once an email reaches an inbox, it’s filtered according to the email provider’s rules (Gmail, Outlook, etc.).

The algorithms used by such providers aren’t made public. So, Klaviyo and Mailchimp can’t decipher which emails are sorted into the regular inbox and which are sent to the spam folder.

About Author

Garin Hobbs is a seasoned Martech and Marketing professional with over 20 years of successful product marketing, customer success, strategy, and sales experience. With a career spanning across ESPs, agencies, and technology providers, Garin is recognized for his broad experience in growing email impact and revenue, helping launch new programs and products, and developing the strategies and thought leadership to support them. Understanding how to optimally align people, process, and technology to produce meaningful outcomes, Garin has worked to deliver sustainable improvements in consumer experience and program revenue for such brands as Gap, Starbucks, Macy’s, Foot Locker, Bank of America, United Airlines, and Hilton Hotels. For more information, follow him on Linkedin

Let Us Help Take You To The Next Level Of Email Marketing

Get in touch to start a conversation.

Get in touch
Multi-ESP Support

We support 50+ ESP vendors. Be it enterprise platforms such as SalesForce and Oracle Marketing Cloud or small and medium sized business platforms such as Mailchimp, Klaviyo, Aweber, and ActiveCampaign, we’ve got you covered.