The Complete Klaviyo Review for Ecommerce Email Marketing

Historically, ecommerce owners have struggled with email. What’s that about?

Email marketing is a vital tool, something that they absolutely need in order to run a successful ecommerce business, but it hasn’t been an easy road. Email platforms traditionally don’t talk to ecommerce platforms. They don’t share data, so even something as simple as segmenting your email list based on customer purchase history has proved to be a daunting manual task.

Ecommerce owners know that highly targeted and highly personal emails will be more effective and lead to more revenue. But the path to achieve that was nearly impossible. And beyond that, even if you do the manual work of transferring your data over to your email marketing platform, it’s difficult to see just how well those targeted campaigns perform.

This is where Klaviyo comes in.

What is Klaviyo?

Klaviyo is essentially an email marketing platform like MailChimp or Active Campaign, but it’s got a leg up on these other platforms due to its tight ecommerce integrations. Klaviyo integrates seamlessly with many ecommerce platforms. Klaviyo is only a few years old, but they are leading the way when it comes to ecommerce email marketing.

How is Klaviyo different?

Like other email marketing platforms, you can easily create lists and segments and build campaigns through their easy drag-and-drop editor.

The true power of Klaviyo is in how they use your ecommerce data. Not only do they sync all of your ecommerce data (sales, purchase history, customer order totals, etc), but they use that actionable data to create dynamic segments to power your email marketing program. Based on your customers’ behavior, Klaviyo will automatically transfer them from list to list so that you are always sending them the most relevant campaigns.

Another major differentiator from other email marketing platforms is Klaviyo’s campaign reporting metrics. On top of the traditional metrics like open rate and click-through rates, Klaviyo provides real revenue data that can be tied to each campaign (or campaign variation if you are using their A/B testing functionality). This allows you to dig deep and see what campaigns are working to inform your email marketing strategy going forward.

Other email marketing platforms are trying to keep up with Klaviyo these days, offering some level of integration with Shopify and other ecommerce platforms, but none match the tight integration of Klaviyo, which was built from the ground up with ecommerce email marketing in mind.

What are the keys to successful email marketing?

There are 2 basic things that you absolutely must have in order to have an effective email marketing strategy.

1) Personalization

The more you personalize your emails and tailor them to the individual needs of your audience members, the more likely they are to convert. So, the ability to segment based on customers’ on-site behavior is key. This gives you the ability to personalize and send highly targeted emails.

We said it once, but we’ll say it again… Klaviyo does this automatically for you, creating dynamic segments based on your audience’s on-site behavior. That is what makes it so powerful and the front runner in ecommerce email marketing, in our opinion.

2) Measurable Results

In order to have a successful email marketing strategy, you must be able to measure your results. How else would you know if it’s successful or not?

Open rates and click-through rates are good to know, but how do they affect your bottom line? Without additional reporting capabilities, like that of Klaviyo, it is very difficult to track and see how each campaign contributes to the success of your online store.

With Klaviyo, it is easy to understand the success of each campaign so that you can optimize going forward.

What are the best features of Klaviyo?

Klaviyo has a ton of features that make it our go-to ecommerce email marketing platform, but here are a few of the most stellar.

The first 2 we’ve already talked about: dynamic list segmentation and ecommerce reporting.

Dynamic List Segmentation

Klaviyo automatically creates powerful segments based on ecommerce data from your website and dynamically updates it in real time. With their tight integration with Shopify (and many other ecommerce platforms), it is easy to create almost any ecommerce segment you can imagine.

Ecommerce Reporting

On top of the in-depth revenue reporting we’ve already mentioned, allowing you to figure out what’s working and what’s not, Klaviyo also has a great list growth metric. This allows you to see details about how your list is growing over time and which are the areas of highest growth.

A/B Testing

Klaviyo has the ability to do A/B testing within emails. This allows you to test different subject lines or email copy on a small portion of your list. After a couple of hours, Klaviyo will then automatically select the winner based on performance metrics and send it out to the rest of your list to ensure the highest performing email is delivered.

Smart Sending

Finally, one of our favorite features of Klaviyo is smart sending. This is a lesser known feature available on each campaign.

One concern around a highly segmented email marketing program is sending too many emails to individual users. Some users may fall into many smart segments, so if you send several emails per day, you could end up wearing them out and causing them to unsubscribe.

Klaviyo’s smart sending feature ensures that this doesn’t happen. If you turn smart sending on, you don’t need to worry about sending too many emails. You simply set a timeframe (we like to use 16 hours) and if someone has received an email within the last 16 hours, they won’t receive the latest email that you are sending. Problem solved!

What could be improved on Klaviyo?

Mobile App

Klaviyo’s mobile app is a bit dated and not incredibly powerful. Given all of the functionality available on the web platform, their mobile app could definitely use an upgrade.

User Management

In Klaviyo accounts, there is only one main account login, which is difficult for teams working within the same account.

They also don’t offer multi-account functionality which is key for a company like ours that manages email for a lot of brands.

Account Level Reporting

While their campaign by campaign reporting is amazing, Klaviyo’s top-level account reporting that aggregates results across all campaigns could be improved.

How does Klaviyo’s pricing compare to other email marketing platforms?

Klaviyo’s pricing is on par with that of MailChimp or Active Campaign at $200 per month for 5,000 subscribers. For 5,000 subscribers, a comparable plan on MailChimp would cost $199 for a Pro Subscription (which includes ecommerce reporting data) plus $50 for your 5,000 subscribers. On Active Campaign, you’d be paying $135 per month (paid yearly).

The great thing about Klaviyo is that they only charge you for the subscribers that you actively market to. You could have 20,000 names imported from an old list, but you only pay for the number that you email each month.

In our opinion you get way more bang for your buck with Klaviyo than either MailChimp or Active Campaign.

What’s the verdict on Klaviyo?

If you are an ecommerce store and you want to be doing email marketing (which is a no-brainer), then you need to be on Klaviyo. That being said, Klaviyo is just a tool. You need to develop a strong email marketing strategy and know how to implement it in order for Klaviyo to be effective.

That’s where we come in. We manage ecommerce email marketing for a variety of brands, helping them communicate effectively with their customers and drive revenue.

Looking for help with your ecommerce email marketing?

Get in touch with us

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