I’m still small – in terms of active installations – French, but already pretty damn strong!
I offer my users to create and send newsletters from the WordPress interface, and also to automate them (among other things).
In short, I am a complete email marketing tool. Did you recognize me? I am the AcyMailing plugin.
If it does not yet benefit from the popularity of one of its main competitors, also French (MailPoet), AcyMailing has serious assets to seduce you.
To learn more and discover it in detail, I have prepared a complete test that explores it from top to bottom. While showing you exactly how to set it up and use it.
Ready ? Immediate take off!
What is AcyMailing?
AcyMailing is a freemium extension that allows you to send newsletters from your WordPress administration interface. Multi-purpose, the plugin also allows, among other things, to collect e-mail addresses and set up automated e-mails (marketing automation).
Developed and maintained by a French company (Acyba)AcyMailing first made a name for itself on the Joomla CMS, to the point of becoming one of its most popular extensions.
4 years ago – at the time of writing these lines – the Acyba team decided to launch its WordPress extension in parallel. With over 7,000 active installations, the latter is beginning to make a name for itself within the WordPress landscape and is signaled for example by a significant number of positive reviews (overall rating of stars).
Convinced users highlight, pell-mell, the following characteristics:
- the intuitiveness of the interface;
- responsiveness and efficiency of support;
- ease of handling and speed of configuration;
- the many possibilities allowed from the free version of the extension.
Regarding this last point, know that you can use AcyMailing in two ways:
- opt for the free version, therefore;
- take advantage of additional options offered by the premium version of the extension, starting at €29/year (more info on this subject in the section devoted to prices).
For information, Acyba also offers a very practical freemium tool, called AcyChecker. The latter makes it possible to verify that the e-mail addresses you collect are indeed valid.
I feel you are very focused and attentive, so let’s continue by evoking the seductive assets of this newsletter extension for WordPress.
What are the main features of AcyMailing?
Like any good self-respecting newsletter creation extension, AcyMailing embeds several “classic” features that are also found in most of its competitors (eg MailPoet):
- the extension offers a drag-and-drop interface (drag and drop);
- of the templates responsive emails are available to avoid starting from scratch and start from a pre-built model;
- no coding knowledge (HTML/CSS) is necessary to use the plugin created by Acyba;
- you can both collect e-mail addresses via dedicated formswhile sending classic newsletters or automated e-mails (e.g. welcome e-mail or more extensive sequence of several e-mails);
- AcyMailing is GDPR compliant.
Beyond that, AcyMailing stands out with several options that are rare or completely non-existent among the competition. For example, I could cite the following very interesting elements:
- AcyMailing does not impose no limit on the number of e-mails to send, and this, from its free version! You are also not limited on the number of users and lists you wish to create;
- the extension is 100% French, which guarantees you assistance in the language of Molière. A real plus if you don’t speak English;
- like MailPoet – also French -, AcyMailing can be used entirely from your WordPress dashboard. No need to leave your site and go back and forth between different interfaces to send your emails;
- AcyMailing uses a queue system to facilitate the deliverability of your emails and “overcome server limitations”. Thanks to this, you limit the risk that your e-mails are considered as SPAM;
- it is possible to customize default emails sent by WordPress, but also those of WooCommerce. Speaking of the famous e-commerce extension, AcyMailing also allows you to send e-mails to follow up with a visitor after a cart abandonment;
- an option allows test the content of your newsletter (links, keywords, images).
Interesting, isn’t it? Now, I suggest you go into the technical details by diving into the heart of the AcyMailing machine.
You will now discover the extension in detail. For this, I will slip into the shoes of the user who starts from scratch and starts without having subscribers to his list.
So you will see how:
- make the first settings on AcyMailing;
- create a list using the plugin, in order to centralize all the e-mail addresses that you will collect;
- design a subscription form to allow your visitors to subscribe to your list;
- send your first newsletter.
To achieve all this, I will rely on the free version of AcyMailing. Already well supplied with options, it is more than enough to get you started.
The pro version, of which I will detail the major options in the process, is rather intended for users who are a little more seasoned in the world of email marketing since it allows in particular to create automations.
In principle, at startup, you will not need to go that far. 😉 Is it good for you? Let’s go !
To start enjoying the features of AcyMailing, install the extension from your WordPress dashboard in Extensions > Add :
Remember to activate it to complete the operation. You will then find yourself with a new settings menu in the left sidebar of your back-office WordPress:
It is from there that you can make all the settings allowed by the extension… and of course send your first newsletters.
You will surely appreciate that all the sub-menus are translated into French, in order to make the handling easier.
Before you can configure anything, AcyMailing then invites you to go through a few steps.
A configuration wizard takes you by the hand to:
- create your first email;
- import your list of subscribers, if you already have one. You can do this with a CSV file, by hand, or using a database.
Nothing forces you to stick to it at the moment T. You can of course come back to it later.
After this appetizer, you will find that the AcyMailing settings are now accessible. The dashboard offers 3 main options:
- “Hearing”to create and segment a list.
- “Emails”to design a new email;
- ” Automating “to set up an automation.
Let’s start with the first element: the development of a list, in which will land all the contacts who will leave you their e-mail address.
To create a list, you can take two paths:
- In the “Dashboard” menu, click on “Create a list” in the “Audience” box.
- Head into AcyMailing > Lists.
By default, you will find that a list called “Newsletters” is already present. You can either modify its name by clicking on it, or design a new one by clicking on the blue “Create” button:
When you are in the edit menu of your list, give the name of your choice to your list, for example “Newsletter”. In particular, you can:
- add a description and a label to your list;
- customize its color;
- choose to track it, i.e. activate the statistical tracking of openings and clicks on your e-mails.
A search bar allows you to search for a specific subscriber and you also have access to data concerning your subscribers (confirmed, inactive, unsubscribed).
Click “Save & Exit” when you’re done. Your first list is now effective. You can delete the one proposed by default by AcyMailing, if necessary.
When you are on the general menu dedicated to your lists, various quick actions are available. With one click you can:
- filter your list;
- clean it using the AcyChecker tool that I told you about at the beginning of the article;
- make it visible/invisible;
- modify or delete it.
Well now, your list is ready to welcome your first contacts. For this, they must have an option to subscribe on your site.
This is the purpose of a subscription form, called opt in form, in English. See now how to submit one using AcyMailing.
Choose form type
For instructions, go to AcyMailing > Registration forms. After clicking on the blue “Create” button, you will be able to choose from two types of registration forms, in the free version:
- a form that uses the default WordPress widget;
- a form based on a shortcode (shortcodein English).
For the purposes of this test, I will opt for the shortcode, which is more flexible than the widget. It will allow me to embed my form wherever I want in my content, for example in a post/page, a sidebar (sidebar) or my footer (footer).
Start by giving your form a name, for example “Registration Form”. Once you register, a shortcode will automatically be generated.
Before embedding it in your content, you need to customize your form in two aspects.
This happens on the right side of the edit window, which also gives you a real-time look at your form as you edit it:
Configure fields and content of the AcyMailing form
In terms of the content of the form, AcyMailing asks you, among other things, to:
- choose a list to which your subscription form will be linked. This is the “Automatically subscribed to” field. In our example, we link it to our already created list, called “Newsletter”;
- select the fields to display. You have the choice between “Name”, which adds the “Name” and “Email” fields to your form. And also “Language”, which allows future subscribers to choose their language. You can also choose to display the field label inside or outside;
- you can finally redirect the person who has just left you their contact details to the page of your choicewhile displaying a personalized message (e.g.: “Thank you for subscribing!”).
Customize visual appearance
Secondly, it is possible to act on the visual appearance of your form. You can first customize the size of the form, as well as the background and text color.
Next, you can change the signup button text, color (background and text), and border type and size.
When you’re done, click “Save and Exit”.
Embed the form
There remains the last step: integrating the form into your content. Here I show you how to add it at the end of an article. This is a great way to add a call to action to entice your visitors to sign up for your list..
Start by copying the shortcode associated with the form you just created. You will find it in AcyMailing > Registration forms :
Select the item of your choice or create one for the occasion. When you are on the WordPress content editor, choose the “Shortcode” block, then paste the shortcode on the inside :
Click on “Update”, and see the result by front end, the visible interface of your site:
If you wish, you can also design a subscription form directly in an article or a page using the “AcyMailing: Registration form” block. On the other hand, you will not be able to modify its visual appearance (except by adding custom CSS).
Like building a list, the process of designing a subscription form is simple, intuitive, and quick. In just a few minutes, you will end up with an efficient and functional form.
However, there are still some limitations to note:
- the modification of the visual aspect is interesting, but basic. You cannot add a custom background, for example;
- there are no ready-to-use templates. This is not the case when you want to create a newsletter. Task which will occupy you in the following part.
Step 1: Choose the type of email to send
Your list is on its way. Your registration form well calibrated and integrated with your content. All you have to do is finish the job by creating your first newsletter.
To do this, click on “Create a new email” on your AcyMailing dashboard (you can also go through AcyMailing > Emails):
You will then have the choice among 3 types of e-mails to create:
- Classic campaign;
- Welcome email;
- Unsubscribe email.
Here, I opt for “Classic campaign”. Be aware that the process will be exactly the same whether you want to design a welcome or unsubscribe email. Only the content will change, of course.
Click the blue “Create” button to continue.
Step 2: Select an email template
In the next step, AcyMailing prompts you to choose from one of 8 templates (templates) of emails it offers. They are declined in several universes to be able to adapt to the typology of different businesses:
- company ;
You also have the model proposed by the configuration wizard of the plugin. Finally, last option: you can start from a blank template, if you wish. But the process will be more time-consuming than with a template.
Click on the one of your choice to land on the drag-and-drop editor offered by AcyMailing.
Step 3: Edit the email
Third, get your hands dirty to personalize your newsletter. By default, you will find that the chosen template is both written in English and with fake text.
For a professional look, modify it with the editorial content of your choice. Before that, it may be better to work on its structure and presentation.
To do this, you can add 1 to 4 columns, called “Zones”, and fill them with blocks. As in the WordPress content editor (Gutenberg), blocks designate containers within which you can add text, a title, a video, a button, an image, etc.
The mode of operation is identical to that offered by an Elementor type page builder. You choose the element you want to add, then you drag and drop it to the place of your choice in the email.
All your blocks can be modified in real time, directly on the screen. For each of them, customization options appear (text size, color etc.) as soon as you click on them.
Each block created as you wish can be saved, as can the entire email template, for that matter.
When you’re done, click on the floppy disk to save your template.
Continue by entering a subject (subject of the e-mail) and a preview text (email preview line). You also have the option of adding an attachment.
Step 4: Make send settings
You now come to step 4, which consists of fine-tuning the final details. Now choose the list to which you want to send your newsletter.
Then fill in information about the sender (you): name, e-mail etc. With the free version, you have no choice on the date and time of sending the campaign: it will be sent immediately. You cannot plan it.
Finally, you can send a test email to the address of your choice to verify that everything is displayed correctly.
By default, AcyMailing uses your host’s server to send your emails. It is not the most reliable and efficient solution if you need to send emails frequently. To overcome this problem, AcyMailing offers to configure your sending method by offering several e-mail sending services (Sendinblue, SendMail, SendGrid, Amazon SES). You will find the different possible options in AcyMailing > Configuration.
All is well ? Your first newsletter is ready to be launched, congratulations! To ensure follow-up of the newsletters sent, you can then explore two sub-menus:
- AcyMailing > Statistics presents you with data on percentage of emails delivered, open, click and bounce rate;
- AcyMailing > Subscribers lists all subscribers to your list, with a case-by-case view of each person (opening rate, click-through rate, membership list, etc.).
All these options will already be substantial to start for free. If you are already a skilled marketer or simply want to benefit from more extensive options, find out just below what the premium version of AcyMailing can bring you.
Collecting e-mail addresses, via a registration form, implies compliance with GDPR regulations. AcyMailing already offers several options/settings to be in order, like the box that you can add to an opt-in form so that a user can freely give his consent when he wishes to subscribe to your email list. You also have control over the management and deletion of your users’ data (in Configuration > Data collection).
To apply good practices in terms of GDPR, do not hesitate to consult our dedicated resource on the WPMarmite blogas well as CNIL recommendationsin charge of GDPR compliance in France.
Finally, the best thing is to get closer to a specialist in the matter, if you have the slightest doubt.
What does the Pro version of AcyMailing offer?
Plan and boost the sending of your e-mails
With AcyMailing free, the free plugin offer, no automatic actions are allowed. The pro offer allows you to plan the automatic sending of your newsletters at the date and time of your choice.
Additionally, you can also:
- send a series of emails when a subscriber performs a specific action (click to a specific location, purchase of a product, etc.);
- send a daily/weekly/monthly newsletter with dynamic content ;
- send basket reminder emails if you own a WooCommerce store.
In addition, you can segment your list according to different criteria: age of your subscribers, behavior, occupations, etc.
Add custom fields
By default, the free version offers “only” two types of fields: “Name” and “Language”.
With the Enterprise version of AcyMailing, you can add custom fields to your subscription forms displaying the text of your choicein order to collect additional information about your future subscribers.
A drop-down menu also offers pre-designed fields allowing for example to display radio buttons, a checkbox, a file to attach, etc. :
Boost your signup forms
At the level of your subscription forms, the premium offer of AcyMailing allows to display them in a pop-up window (contextual window) which will be displayed according to certain conditions.
For example, you can define a delay (in seconds) from which your window will appear, or trigger its display from the moment the user has scrolled X % on the page.
Also note that from the “Essential” offer of AcyMailing, you benefit from protection by captcha as soon as a user wishes to subscribe to your list.
Customize WordPress (and WooCommerce) Automated Emails
Natively, WordPress sends generic e-mails for certain very specific actions (ex: resetting a password, registering a new user).
The problem is that they are not customizable by default (except through the code), so you have to settle for what is offered.
With AcyMailing’s “E-mail overload” menu, forget about this concern. You can now edit a dozen default emails using the extension’s editor, drag and drop.
All text is editable – including default WooCommerce emails – and you can toggle any email on/off with a single click.
In premium – from the “Enterprise” license -, AcyMailing is able to manage all “bounces”, that is to say e-mails sent to addresses that do not exist or no longer exist.
Automatically, the plugin can then delete, block or unsubscribe the confirmed user, if you specify it upstream (via the menu AcyMailing > Bounce management):
More finely control the sending of your e-mails
From the “Enterprise” license, you can conduct a security verification test (Safe check) before sending an email.
Concretely, AcyMailing checks your links and your content and determines whether your newsletter can be considered as SPAM or not. Depending on the score assigned to you, you can modify your e-mail address before sending:
To use all its features, you will therefore have to go to checkout. Now see how much it will cost you.
How much does AcyMailing cost?
The AcyMailing extension is initially available for free. You can either upload it to the official directory or activate it directly from your WordPress dashboard.
As a reminder, it does not limit you on the number of sending e-mails and users who can subscribe to your list. It has enough basic functionality to start a free newsletter.
It is therefore the solution that I recommend as a priority to test the waters and get your hands dirty.
If you are already familiar with the world of email marketing and need more advanced features (automations, conditional sending of emails, custom fields, bounce management etc.), you can opt for one of the 3 licenses premium:
- “Essential”from €29/year for use on one site;
- “Enterprise”from €89/year for use on one site;
- “Multisite”from €319/year for use on a maximum of 20 sites.
The choice of license depends on two main factors:
- the number of sites on which you wish to use AcyMailing. If you intend to activate it on more than one site (eg on those of your customers), only the “Multi-site” license will be suitable;
the features you want to take advantage of. If the “Essential” license is the most affordable, it is also the least provided in options. To benefit from all the premium options of AcyMailing, you will need to obtain at least the “Enterprise” license.
Compared to the free version, the “Essential” license allows you, for example, to send your newsletters automatically and to schedule them, while benefiting from advanced statistics and captcha protection for your registration forms.
You now have a global view of the possibilities offered by the AcyMailing newsletter extension. It’s time to conclude by offering you a little recap of everything you’ve already devoured.
Our final opinion on AcyMailing
- The ease of handling and the intuitiveness of the interface, with an efficient drag-and-drop editor.
- The possibility of create and send newsletters without leaving your WordPress interface.
- Extended functionality from the free version.
- No limit on the number of emails sent and subscribers to your list, starting with the free version.
- The presence of modules (in AcyMailing > Modules) to take advantage of additional options (e.g. adding an article or a page to your emails) and facilitate integration with several flagship extensions (WooCommerce, Contact Form 7, Gravity Forms, etc.).
- Frequent updates of the extension. The AcyMailing team strives to develop its extension by taking into account the feedback from its users. Alexandre, the extension’s project manager, told us, for example, that his team was developing its own system for sending e-mails (as MailPoet, one of its competitors, is already doing). A feature for running A/B tests should also see the light of day by the end of 2022.
- The attractive price of the premium version : you can already benefit from extended functionalities for only 29 €/year.
- Automation and conditional sending features.
- The support, responsive, and who answers in French.
- All the support related documents are well put together, especially the documentation and the forum. On the other hand, we can regret that they are only in English (even if that is understandable, the audience of the extension is international)!
Areas for improvement
- For the moment, AcyMailing does not allow sending emails with its own servers. This should normally be a story of the past by the end of 2022.
- The number of templates to personalize a newsletter is a bit low : less than 10, both in free and premium versions. It’s a pity that there isn’t also one to design more attractive registration forms. Basically, you will surely have to use a little CSS to make them stick to your graphic charter (unless you are not very careful on that side).
- Too bad the “Enterprise” offer can only be used on a maximum of one site. If you have several client sites on which you plan to activate AcyMailing, you will have no other option than to pay 319 €/year to use the plugin.
AcyMailing, for whom?
From my point of view, AcyMailing is a very interesting extension. I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of its interface and the multiplicity of its options.
I think it can suit all types of profiles. It will be particularly suitable for beginners who want to create and send a newsletter from their WordPress interface, without getting lost in the middle of endless settings..
Its free, complete version will allow you to set foot in the stirrup to start building your list and sending your first e-mails.
If you are a bit more seasoned marketer, the premium version will surely be necessary. You will appreciate the automation features, custom fields and other advanced statistics.
On the other hand, it may seem a little light compared to mastodons dedicated to e-mail marketing like ActiveCampaign or Mailchimp.
It all depends on where you place the cursor of your needs. Not to mention that ActiveCampaign and Mailchimp, to name a few, are used on their own interface (excluding WordPress), which can be a hindrance for you.
With AcyMailing, you don’t have to leave WordPress, which is still very practical.
From your side, what is your opinion. If you use AcyMailing, what do you think?