14 min read

Beehiiv vs ConvertKit: picking the perfect newsletter tool

I've compared beehiiv vs ConvertKit to help you decide which newsletter tool fits your needs better.
Features image for the comparison article including the ConvertKit logo versus the beehiiv logo.

When weighing ConvertKit vs Beehiiv, it's essential for creators to understand which is the newsletter tool.

These 2 are some of the best platforms you can use with a free plan and powerful tools.

I even say that you can use them from the beginner phase until the Pro stage, where you make a full-time income with your content.

So, let’s see how these Substack alternatives help creators.

Affiliate Disclaimer: This page contains affiliate links. My content is supported by readers like you. So if you buy after clicking on a link, I get a commission without costing you extra. 😊

ConvertKit vs beehiiv summary

Beehiiv and ConvertKit are 2 great tools for newsletters that don’t have many flaws.

The main difference is that beehiiv is a more complete tool because it can be used as a blog and is cheaper. While ConvertKit has a better writing experience, is more customizable, and allows the selling of digital products.

The main similarities between ConvertKit and beehiiv are that they both have a free plan, are easy to use, and allow creators to monetize their content with memberships and Ads.

Beehiiv is the better option if you have a big subscriber base (more than 10,000 subs) and want to have a blog and newsletter in the same place.

On the other hand, ConvertKit is better for creators that already have a blog using Ghost or WordPress or are just starting their journey.

Best overall
  • Content creation: 9.2
  • Customization: 6.8
  • SEO: 7.8
  • Growth tools: 10
  • Management: 9.5
  • Monetization: 7.8
  • Overall Rating: 9.6
Cheaper for Beginners
  • Content creation: 6.8
  • Customization: 9.6
  • SEO: 3.7
  • Growth tools: 8.6
  • Management: 7.5
  • Monetization: 8.3
  • Overall Rating: 8.7

beehiiv overview

Beehiiv is a newsletter tool with blogging capabilities. This means you can use it to publish different content in the same place.

Beehiiv is a no-code solution for creators who want to focus on writing without having to deal with technical configuration and is probably the best Substack alternative available.

Things I like about beehiiv:

  • Nothing to install;
  • Free plan (up to 2,500 subscribers);
  • 0% membership fees;
  • Do everything without code;
  • Works as blog + newsletter;
  • Good email analytics;
  • Amazing newsletter design customization;
  • Multiple newsletters in the same account;
  • Referral program;
  • Integrations;

Things I don't like about beehiiv:

  • The free plan is extremely limited;
  • Average website customization;
  • Custom domain only on paid plans;

ConvertKit overview

ConvertKit is one of the best alternatives to Substack and one of the best newsletter services on the market.

It was created in 2013, and ConvertKit focused on being THE email service for creatives.

As you will see, they have all the tools to run a personal newsletter, monetizing it and earn a full-time income.

Things I like about ConvertKit:

  • Free plan (up to 1,000 subscribers);
  • Automated email sequences;
  • Integrations (example, Zapier);
  • Great Monetization (newsletter memberships, digital products, newsletter ads and more);
  • Low fees (0,6% + payment processing fees);
  • Analytics tools (including click tracking and subscriber engagement score);
  • Email segmentation (send emails based on tags);
  • Newsletter referral program.

Things I don't like about ConvertKit:

  • Their landing page is a bit limited;
  • Not good for blogging and SEO;
  • Lack of importing/export posts.


Now, I'll analyze the options to make money with each platform.

Monetization on beehiiv

Monetization options on beehiiv:

  • Memberships: Yes
  • Display ads (Programmatic advertisement like Adsense): Yes (Adsense only, I think);
  • e-Commerce / Digital products: No;
  • Sponsorships/ Marketplace ads: Yes
  • Donations/ Tips: No;
  • Manual embed ads on content: Yes;
  • Affiliate marketing: Yes.
A list of beehiiv newsletters offering money to other newsletters for referring them new subscribers.
Boosts is a way of a newsletter make money by recommending subscribers to another newsletter in using beehiiv.

Beehiiv is very good when it comes to making money and offers creators lots of options.

Memberships and ads are probably the bread and butter of many creators.

I want to highlight the Ad Network as a great revenue option.

With this, beehiiv does the heavy lifting of finding sponsors for you, and they take a percentage of the revenue for the work done.

This means you can focus on writing, and beehiiv will bring you sponsors and money.

This is pretty cool and makes beehiiv one of the best platforms for monetization! And they also have other monetization options like Boosts.

Monetization options on ConvertKit

Monetization options on ConvertKit:

  • Memberships: Yes;
  • Display ads (Programmatic advertisement): No;
  • Digital products: Yes;
  • Sponsorships/ Marketplace ads: Yes;
  • Donations/ Tips: Yes;
  • Manual embed ads on content: Yes;
  • Affiliate marketing: Yes.

The “Earn” tab in ConvertKit reveals all the ways you can monetize your content: paid newsletter, selling digital products, and sponsorships (via ConvertKit Sponsor Network, aka CKSN).

Most creators make the bulk of their revenue via paid subscriptions and sponsorships.

ConvertKit allows you to maximize earnings because you can easily create a paid newsletter. And if you are approved to the Sponsor Network, you’ll have an easy path to finding sponsors.

Dashboard of setting up monetization on ConvertKit.
ConvertKit’s monetization setup.

On top of that, ConvertKit also allows you to sell digital products. Apart from newsletters, you can also use ConvertKit to sell e-books, and coaching/consultations, just to name a few ideas.

Monetization category winner

ConvertKit takes the win in the monetization category. This is a hard choice since I consider both to be gold standards for monetizing newsletters.

ConvertKit has more ways for you to receive money from subscribers. Besides the usually paid memberships, it allows you to sell digital products and access their Sponsor Network to have ads on the newsletter.

Beehiiv is also very good for monetization as they focus on memberships and Ad Network, but unfortunately, it lacks the versatility to sell digital products. For this reason, ConvertKit takes this round.

Content Creation

Now, I'll explore the process of creating content with each tool.

Content Creation Experience on beehiiv

The content creation on beehiiv is great. The editor is clean, easy to use and works well.

The image shows the available content blocks when creating content on beehiiv, it include things like AI writer, creating buttons and a lot more.
Content blocks on beehiiv’s text editor

Clicking on the plus icon from within the editor gives you access to features like:

  • Recommend other newsletters;
  • Paywall the rest of the post;
  • Text formatting;
  • Custom HTML;
  • AI writer;
  • Buttons;
  • Polls;

On the right sidebar, you can find all the other customization options for the post, including SEO settings, post-delivery type, and a preview of how the content will appear on the website.

Beehiiv even allows saving a page as a template, which will save you time if you create content in a repeatable format. Isn't that awesome?!

Content creation experience on ConvertKit

The writing experience in ConvertKit is pretty good.

The editor looks clean: with the content on the left and settings on the right (to customize font size, colors, etc.).

When you start creating a newsletter, you can start with a blank page or use one of the templates available, which makes the newsletter prettier and saves time with formatting.


But better than an editor that looks clean is one that works well and doesn’t limit you from creating content. So, let me tell you that you are in good hands with ConvertKit.

Here are some of the main content blocks you can find on the editor:

  • Text formatting;
  • Files;
  • Layouts;
  • Products;
  • Countdown times;
  • HTML blocks.

If I have to point out a weakness here, I’ll mention that the HTML block doesn’t always work as intended, and I'm not sure it's my fault (but it could be).

Content Creation Category winner

Beehiiv is better than ConvertKit for Content Creation.

The editors of both tools are similar and share most features to create a newsletter.

The main difference is that beehiiv is better for posting content on the website, whereas ConvertKit has more limitations.

For example, on beehiiv, you can publish a post that is available only for paying subscribers to read on the website. This lets you put content behind a paywall on the internet, which you cannot do on ConvertKit at the time of writing.

Also, beehiiv deals better with HTML and JavaScript in their editor, and that's something I consider very important.


Next comes customization and design.

Customization on beehiiv

Beehiiv's customization summary:

  • Newsletter templates: No;
  • Newsletter customization options: Great and easy to use;
  • Website themes: Yes, but still limited;
  • Possibility to buy a theme from a 3rd-party or create one with custom code: Not possible.

Beehiiv is polarizing when it comes to customization.

On the newsletter side, beehiiv is the most customizable platform for newsletters I know without writing code.

You can customize everything about the aspect of your newsletter in minutes. And I love this!

Page with settings to customize newsletter on beehiiv.
Newsletter customization on beehiiv.

But, when it comes to website customization, options are still a bit limiting.

In July 2023, beehiiv released massive improvements to website customization, which was a step in the right direction.

So, expect great customization on the website and only okay options for the website.


Website theme customization options on the Web Builder

Customization on ConvertKit

ConvertKit's customization summary:

  • Newsletter templates: Yes;
  • Newsletter customization options: Yes;
  • Website themes: Yes;
  • Possibility to buy a theme from a 3rd-party or create one with a custom code: Yes, from Palladio.

When it comes to customization, ConvertKit is great!

ConvertKit allows customizing almost everything on the newsletter side. For example, you can tinker with font colors, backgrounds, the styles of the buttons, and a lot more.

CK also makes customizing landing pages and forms really easy.

A screenshot of samples for ConvertKit's email templates.
ConvertKit's email templates

On top of that, CK has many design options for newsletters, landing pages, and forms. This can save you hours with ConvertKit’s templates or simply get inspired by them.

And if all these aren’t wow enough, ConvertKit also has content snippets which are blocks of content that you can reuse in different places, speeding up your content creation process.

With ConvertKit, it’s possible to express yourself with ease and make your newsletter pretty without much effort.

Customization winner

ConvertKit is the winner when it comes to customization.

ConvertKit has plenty of templates available for the newsletter, landing pages, and forms. And they look very pretty and usable out of the box! And if you don’t like it, just use the easy editor to customize everything.

Don’t get me wrong, Beehiiv’s newsletter customization is 2nd to none, but their website customization could still be improved.

And this is why ConvertKit wins when it comes to customization.


Now comes the cost of each tool.

Beehiiv's pricing

Beehiiv pricing summary:

  • Free plan: Yes, up to 2500 subscribers;
  • Cheaper paid plan: $42 (paid annually);

Beehiiv prices are reasonable with a generous free plan. And with 0% fees!

Most free plans are capped at 1,000 subscribers, but beehiiv allows up to 2,500 subs in the free plan.

Pricing page on beehiiv's website.
Pricing page on beehiiv's website.

But to enable custom domains and paid memberships, you'll have to upgrade to one of their paid plans.

I'm not a fan of the custom domain being associated with a paid plan because small newsletters won't be able to afford it.

This is a case of winning on one side with a generous free plan and losing on the SEO side unless you upgrade.

Beehiiv's "Grow" plan starts at $42/month and gives team members and the API access.

The "Scale" plan ($84/month) unlocks multiple newsletters and the referral program, AI writer and a lot more.

For anyone that makes money with their newsletter, beehiiv is a good deal. Plain and simple!

On top of that, beehiiv has so many features for a lower price than if you used most of their competitors.

ConvertKit pricing

ConvertKit pricing summary:

  • Free plan: Yes;
  • Cheaper paid plan: $9/month for 300 subscribers.

Pricing is one of the downsides of ConvertKit, as their prices go up faster than some other alternatives like beehiiv or MailerLite.

Their pricing works in tiers: the more subscribers you get, the more you get billed.

However, ConvertKit has a free plan of up to 1,000 subscribers.

ConvertKit’s pricing for the year 2023, which is the price $9/month is recommended.
2023 ConvertKit’s pricing

In general, this pricing strategy is helpful for beginners because it allows them to pay a small fee for the tool when starting.

But as your following grows, so will your bill.

Paid plans start at $9/ month for 300 subscribers and grow until it becomes quite expensive.

To put it into perspective, ConvertKit’s prices escalate more than other competitors with better blogging capabilities.

Yes, blogging isn’t really the heart and soul of ConvertKit. And they're great at it but are making a lot of effort to improve.

Pricing category winner

Beehiiv is the winner when it comes to pricing!

It’s hard to find another newsletter tool that allows 2,500 subscribers on their free plan.

I know that beehiiv has limited the features of their free plan. But still, if you compare that to ConvertKit’s pricing chart with the same number of subs, I promise you, you would hardly care at all.

On top of that, beehiiv offers only 2 paid plans that don’t escalate through the roof when you get more subscribers. This makes beehiiv much cheaper than ConvertKit for most creators.


Now, I want to analyze the search engine optimization (SEO) of beehiiv and ConvertKit.

Beehiiv's SEO

Important SEO features checklist for beehiiv:

  • Custom domain: Yes, you can use a custom domain;
  • HTTPS: Yes;
  • URL slug customization: Yes
  • Meta description customization: Yes;
  • Sitemap: Yes;
  • Canonical tags: Yes;
  • Redirects: No;
  • Robots.txt: Yes;
  • Website speed: beehiiv has good results in speed tests;

Beehiiv is good when it comes to SEO and is well-optimized by default. So, you don't need to install plugins or do anything fancy!

Their platform has most of the things I consider essential in a way that even a complete beginner can get good results.

Speed test for a website using beehiiv using GTmetrix.
GTmetrix speed test results for a website using beehiiv.

However, if you are a Pro user and want to have control over every SEO feature like you would on Ghost or WordPress, let me stop you right there!

There are some more advanced SEO things missing on beehiiv, like:

  • Ability to create redirects;
  • Customize canonical tags (all links are self-referencing canonicals);
  • Edit the robots.txt and sitemap files;
  • No index pages (only possible to do on a site level).

Overall, you will be more than fine with beehiiv when it comes to SEO.

ConvertKit SEO

Important SEO features checklist for ConvertKit:

  • Custom domain: Yes;
  • HTTPS: Yes;
  • URL slug customization: No;
  • Meta description: No;
  • Sitemap: No;
  • Canonical tags: No;
  • Redirects: No;
  • Robots.txt: No;
  • Website speed: Good;

SEO isn’t exactly ConvertKit’s strongest suit.

ConvertKit was (and is) mostly a newsletter tool. And for many years, it never had blogging capabilities.

As I write this, ConvertKit is below average when it comes to blogging.
Their creator profiles are more like a Link-in-bio tool than a blogging option.

A screenshot of Nathan Barry's creator profile on ConverKit.
ConvertKit's creator profile

There are a lot of things missing with the creator profiles on ConvertKit for them to be a valid alternative to Ghost or WordPress.

I don't know if ConvertKit will ever become a great blogging tool with strong SEO. So, I recommend using ConvertKit paired with another blogging tool for the best SEO results.

SEO category winner

Beehiiv is the winner in the SEO category.

Beehiiv has much more advanced blogging capabilities, making it a good option if you care about SEO.

Beehiiv is not a typical newsletter tool as it works as a blog and a newsletter, all in the same place. This is similar to Substack, but if you put Beehiiv vs Substack, you’ll see they have a lot of differences.

ConvertKit leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to SEO, you could see in the SEO checklist above.

I know ConvertKit wasn't originally meant for blogging. Yet, I have to mention the obvious: you can't expect people to find you from search engines by posting on ConvertKit.

So, beehiiv is the clear winner of this category.


Let's compare the tools when it comes to growth tools. These are the small marketing things that can have a big impact on the business.

Beehiiv Growth tools

Beehiiv's most important Growth tools checklist:

  • Plugins/integrations: Yes;
  • Automated email sequences: Yes;
  • Referral program: Yes;
  • Subscriber segmentation: Yes;
  • Custom sending domain: No;
  • A/B testing (titles): Yes;
  • RSS feed: Yes;

Beehiiv's main focus is on growing newsletters, so I would expect them to perform well here.

And that's exactly what happens!

Beehiiv allows integrations, which you can use to connect them to tools like Zapier and Make to automate a lot of processes.

Magic links page on beehiiv dashboard.
A magic link lets people signup to a beehiiv newsletter with 1 click.

Also, Beehiiv has newsletter recommendations where different publications can recommend each other and grow together.

This lets people subscribe with 1-click, making it a breeze.

So, I have to say I'm impressed with the things beehiiv is evolving while some competitors have had the same flaws for years (cough Substack cough).

ConvertKit growing tools

ConvertKit most important Growth tools checklist:

  • Plugins/integrations: Yes;
  • Automated email sequences: Yes;
  • Referral program: Yes;
  • Subscriber segmentation: Yes;
  • Custom sending domain: Yes;
  • A/B testing (titles): Yes;
  • RSS feed: Yes;

ConvertKit has fantastic tools to help newsletters grow!

From integrations with blogging tools; to having email automation to help make more money; or simply testing different newsletter titles to improve the open rate, ConvertKit has them all.

That's a lot!

ConvertKit’s email automation template that shows that structure of your podcast.
ConvertKit email automation.

When I tell you ConvertKit is really for newsletter growth, I'm serious.

You can also use ConvertKit to create subscription forms to put on other websites. This will also help grow the newsletter by earning subscribers from a blog.

ConvertKit even integrates with SparkLoop, which allows you to create a referral program for your own newsletter.

For those reasons, ConvertKit gets a great score in this category.

Growth category winner

Beehiiv is better than ConvertKit in the growth category by a small margin.

Beehiiv wins this category because it’s as good as ConvertKit when we think about growth tools like email automation and referral programs.

But beehiiv takes the lead by having more tools that help grow the website.

Final Thoughts

ConvertKit and beehiiv are two of the best tools out there for newsletters.

They are easy to use and have free plans that beginners are looking for, but they also have advanced features that Pros want and desire to use!

However, it’s hard to level the playing field for this match-up because beehiiv is “more complete” than ConvertKit.

I say this because beehiiv is a hybrid platform that works as a blog and a newsletter. Meanwhile, ConvertKit is “only” usable for newsletters.

As this comparison showed, beehiiv is easier to use, has better pricing, and is better for growth and SEO.

On the other hand, ConvertKit has better customization and more monetization options.

This means that if we just looked at the newsletter features, it would be almost a tie. But beehiiv is winning the comparison when I look at all the features, including blogging capabilities.

You will not make a mistake by using either of them for your newsletter.

Usually, creators with an existing blog prefer ConvertKit for their newsletter.

While creators who want to centralize the blog and newsletter in only one place tend to prefer beehiiv.

Best overall
  • Content creation: 9.2
  • Customization: 6.8
  • SEO: 7.8
  • Growth tools: 10
  • Management: 9.5
  • Monetization: 7.8
  • Overall Rating: 9.6
Cheaper for Beginners
  • Content creation: 6.8
  • Customization: 9.6
  • SEO: 3.7
  • Growth tools: 8.6
  • Management: 7.5
  • Monetization: 8.3
  • Overall Rating: 8.7