Likelihood to Recommend
Laravel is ideally suited for fluent PHP developers who want a framework that can be used to both rapidly prototype web applications as well as support scalable, enterprise-level solutions. I think where it is less ideal is where the client has an expectation of using a certain CMS, or of having a certain experience on the admin side that would perhaps be better suited to a full CMS such as Drupal or WordPress. Additionally, for developers who don't want to write PHP code, Laravel may not be the best solution.
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Mailchimp is a good choice for small businesses who need a simple e-newsletter solution. Most small businesses cannot afford fancy solutions or mail servers, and they need affordable options to maintain subscriber lists and create and send out email newsletters. Creating a basic subscriber form or opt-in link is fairly easy to do, and our web developers do not have issues adding them to a website.
Read full review Pros Many libraries available which simplify integration of SaaS APIs within your application (eg, MailChimp, Mandrill, Stripe, Authorize.net) Pre-packaged tools to facilitate common tasks when building applications (eg, User Authentication and Authorization, Background Jobs, Queues, etc) Support for a broad set of technologies out of the box (eg, PostgreSQL, MySQL/MariaDB, MemcacheD, BeanstalkD, Redis, etc) Read full review Easy form building gets you up and running quickly. Segmentation of contacts allows for grouping of contacts for email blasts. Drag 'n drop email builders can create industry standard emails that look great. Embed codes for websites which can be easily copy and pasted onto websites for instant usage. Read full review Cons Significant learning curve. You cannot be an expert in a week. It takes many experimentations to properly understand the underlying concept. We ourselves learned it by using it on the job. Too much to soak in. Laravel is in everything. Any part of backend development you wish to do, Laravel has a way to do that. It is great, but also overwhelming at the same time. Vendor lock in. Once you are in Laravel, it would not be easy to switch to something else. Laracasts (their online video tutorials) are paid :( I understand the logic behind it, but I secretly wish it would be free. The eloquent ORM is not my recommendation. Let's say you want to write a join, and based on the result you wish to create two objects. If you use Laravel to do automatic joins for you, Laravel internally actually makes two calls to database and creates your two object rather than making one join call and figuring out the results. This makes your queries slow. For this reason, I use everything except eloquent from Laravel. I rather write my own native queries and control the creation of objects then rely on Laravel to do it. But I am sure with time Laravel will make fewer calls to DB. Read full review The customer service could be better, unless you pay a premium fee you are only able to get help through email - no phone calls. Even though we did pay a premium to be able to request help through phone calls, it was still a bit hard to get an appointment set to do so. Since Mailchimp is a huge email marketing application with millions of users, you have to go into it knowing that features/services won't be changed upon request and if an issue was coming from a small account it wouldn't be of enough relevance for them to necessarily take action on it. Read full review Likelihood to Renew
We've had Mailchimp for about ten years, I want to say. I started with the company about four years ago, and I don't see us ever diverting to another source. It's easy for us to use, and we have all our clients already built into the database. I imagine we'll use them for as long as we have the company.
Read full review Usability
Mailchimp has a clean interface and the concepts within the application are really clear. That's why the ramp-up is so easy - they do a great job of avoiding jargon and unnecessary steps in the sending of emails. Designing an email with Mailchimp is as WYSIWYG as you can get, which is a good thing.
Read full review Reliability and Availability
I have, in the 4+ years that I've used Mailchimp, never seen an issue that restricted the use of their software/tools. I don't know of a single time when they're system crashed or went down. I could be wrong, but I honestly haven't experienced any issues with outages, errors or unplanned downtime
Read full review Performance
I haven't noticed any slow speeds from Mailchimp or their tools. I think the landing pages load quickly and look nice. The email reports and editing operates smoothly and doesn't take time to load. Additionally, when I use Mailchimp in conjunction with Zapier + Hubspot I don't notice any drag between any of these tools
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Website tools were easy to use and understand so a novice can easily meet or exceed their client's expectations! Loved that we were able to totally customize so that the e-mail we created conveyed our client's overall messaging consistent with their branding! Client love that we can provide turnkey services to support their sales and marketing teams!
Read full review Implementation Rating
It's pretty easy to get up and running! There's a slight learning curve on a few things, but once you find where everything is located, you can import your list and send your first email. It really makes our clients feel great to see how quickly they can get that first email out.
Read full review Alternatives Considered
Supporting unit testing is bigger plus point in Laravel than any other framework. Developing with Laravel is much easier. Other frameworks have value in market, but Laravel has taken the lead in popularity among PHP developers in recent years. The large community supports you if you have problems. Using Laravel, integration became easy with third-party libraries, but it was costly too.
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I did take a look at
when it came out. But it didn't offer a free migration tool for the free plan. Therefore I didn't get a chance to try it out. Again, their interface to set up drip email sequences (at the time) was something I didn't understand. It may have changed by now, but I am not sure. Mailchimp is intuitive and easy to understand & use.
Read full review Scalability
Mailchimp over the years I've used it has grown in leaps and bounds. They have added so many additional features than were previously available. They are truly an all-in-one marketing platform now. If you're a small operation and just want to add email to your marketing efforts, they're there for you. If you're a larger operation and want to start sending postcard advertisements, they can do that. If you'd good with that and want to kick up your marketing by going social, you can do that on their platform. They are truly able to be as small as you need, but also get quite large in whatever it is you'd like to do through their system.
Read full review Return on Investment Laravel allows us to rapidly prototype and build complete, scalable applications internally, which saves us time and allows us to have internal tools that fit out precise needs. We use Symfony for a similar purpose, but Laravel is an even higher-level framework that we find saves us substantially more time when building many types of web applications. Laravel solves many of the underlying concerns of building a large application (such as authentication, authorization, secure input handling) in the right ways. It saves us from handling those low-level concerns ourselves, potentially in a way that could take a lot of time or sets us up for issues in the future. It's tough to assign an ROI to this, but I'm sure it has prevented issues and saved time, which both have an impact on our financial situation. Read full review It imports coded templates and sends follow-up emails based on clicks, opens, etc. It's an effective email marketing tool with a friendly interface that educates and assists customers. It has social media management, landing page creation, inbound marketing, and CRM integrations. Read full review ScreenShots