How to create a mailing list in MailChimp: A Beginner's Guide

Email marketing is very strong. Using the newsletter, you can notify subscribers about events and promotions, send them interesting content and do many other useful things. But this article is not about marketing. This is a guide to working with the popular mailing service - MailChimp.

Why MailChimp

There are a lot of mailing list services. Highly. Among them are pretty cool. But now we will talk about MailChimp. What he is good at:

  • Service freeuntil you have 2000 subscribers or 12,000 emails per month. For young business and narrow niches, this is quite enough.
  • Reliability. MailChimp is used by over a million people. Apparently, not for the monkey on the logo.
  • Easy integrates with a bunch of services (counting Wordpress sites).
  • Adaptive design. Mailings can be configured even from a smartphone.
  • Convenient interface for typesetting letters. Knowledge of HTML and CSS is not required.

There is one drawback (and not for everyone): there is no Russian localization. But even without knowledge of English, you can easily figure it out with this guide.

If you want to learn more about the pros and cons of different mail services, read this article.

Getting started with MailChimp

Registration is standard, there is nothing unusual in it. Go to the site of the service and click on the "Sign Up Free" button in the upper right.

Specify the mailing address, login (you can duplicate email) and password. Just in case, let me remind you: the password must contain at least 1 digit, a special character, lowercase and uppercase letters.

Get notified by mail and activate your account. Next will begin the process of setting up an account.

Enter your first and last name. Click "Continue".

Write the name of your company and enter the site address. If there is no site, you can specify a page on Facebook or Twitter.

Write the physical address. "But why? Believe it or not, we need your physical address. This will give us confidence that your mailings do not violate international anti-spam laws."

Is your business selling something online? Poke into the right answer and move on.

Connect your accounts in social networks. Through MailChimp, you can post to Facebook and Twitter. Vkontakte, unfortunately, no.

At the last step you will be offered to subscribe to 2 mailings. The first is the Mailchimp tutorial. Of course in English. The second is about e-commerce. Also in English. Let's go!

How to translate MailChimp into Russian


Of course, you can use to translate the capabilities of your browser and plug-ins to it. But the result is likely to be deplorable.

MailChimp Interface Overview

In terms of usability, MailChimp is very good. Getting lost here is hard. So, what do we have on the main page?


  • Campaigns (campaigns) - setting up and launching the mailings themselves.
  • Templates (templates) - layout of templates for letters.
  • Lists (lists) - the formation of lists of addresses to which you will send letters. Subscription forms are also created here.
  • Reports (reports) - all information about current and past campaigns.
  • Automation (automation) - creating a series of event letters. Which will be sent, for example, during registration, purchase or other subscriber actions. On free accounts is not available.

This part is hidden in the tab with your name on the right.

  • Notification (notifications) - here you can read the notifications that you receive.
  • Profile (profile) - opens the settings menu.
  • Account (account) - the same thing, just another section.
  • Log out (logout) - logout from your account.
  • Help (help) - opens help in English.

Dashboard (dashboard)

When you have not done anything yet, nothing new contains. This is just another way to get to certain points.

Here you can:

  • Create a campaign.
  • Create a list.
  • Create a subscription form (Start building your audience).
  • Invite colleagues to collaborate (invite your colleagues).
  • Verify email addresses from which you will be sending the newsletter (Verify a domain).

If the first campaigns have already been launched, there will be reports on new subscribers, openability of letters, the best newsletters, etc.

Getting started!

MailChimp Domain Verification

To use your email addresses for distribution, you must first confirm that you are the owner of the domain. The service is not strongly recommended to use mailboxes on,, and other domains.

Therefore, create a mailbox on the domain of your site, go to the main page and click "Verify a Domain".

Specify the email address belonging to the desired domain, and click "Send Verification Email".

Copy the code received in the letter and enter it in the "Enter code" field. Click "Verify".

If you need to confirm another domain, click "Verify another". If not - "Done."

Now that you have mailboxes from which you can send emails, it's time to start preparing the mailings themselves.

Creating Mailing List in MailChimp

Before launching the newsletter, you need to prepare a list of addresses of people who will receive letters. To do this, click on the "Lists" button in the main menu.

If you have already created some lists, they will be displayed here. To create a new one - click on "Create list".

A questionnaire will open that you need to fill out. Let's see what fields are there.

List name

This is the name of the list. Please note that your subscribers can see it. So think of something presentable.

From email address

Your mailbox from which distribution is conducted. Subscribers will be able to send response letters to it.

From name

From whom the letter. Write here your name or company name.

Remind people how they signed up to your list

Explaining to people why they receive this letter. Write something in the spirit of: "You have subscribed to our newsletter."

Company / organization

Write, on behalf of which company will conduct the mailing. If you entered your company name during registration - the field will be filled automatically.


Specify the legal address of the company or your physical address. The field is filled automatically if you specified this data during registration.


The city where you are.

Zip / Postal code

Your zip code.


A country.


Phone. It can be omitted.


Notifications. By default, they will be sent to the address specified during registration. If you need to change - click "Edit" and enter another.

Check the box next to the notifications you want to receive.

  • Daily summary - a daily report on new subscriptions and cancellations of your newsletter.
  • Subcribe notification - notifications about each new subscriber.
  • Unsubcribe notification - notifications about each unsubscribed.

When finished setting - click "Save".

Now this list will be displayed in the "List" section, and you can enter it at any time.

Adding new subscribers to the list

You have 3 ways to add new people to the list:

  • Manually - using the Add subscriber tool.
  • Import - from other similar services or from files (not available on free accounts).
  • Subscription form - you place the form on your site, and people will subscribe by themselves.

Manual add

To add a new subscriber manually, open the "Add subscribers" section and select the "Add a subscriber" option.

Enter his email and, if you know, the name and surname.

Check the box next to the item "This person gave me permission to email them" (This person allowed me to send him letters). Without it, you will not be allowed to add a subscriber.

The second option: "If this person is on their list, update their profile" - will update the information about the subscriber, if he is already in the list. For example, you had the address of a person, but did not have his name. This way you can add missing information.

Click "Subscribe". You now have a new subscriber! Hooray!


Please note that import does not work on free accounts. Open the "Add subscribers" tab and click "Import subscribers".

Choose where you want to import addresses from: a file with a .csv or .txt resolution, from a spreadsheet, or from services like Google Contacts. Click the "Next" button on the bottom right.

CSV or tab-delimited text file

Click "Browse" and specify the path to the file.

You can import contacts from a CSV file or from a properly formatted txt file. Each new address must begin with a new line, and email, first name and surname must be separated by a tab (tab key).

Check the box next to the option "I understand that my plan will be upgraded automatically." On a free account, you cannot use import, alas.

Click "Next".

Copy / paste from file

There is no need to download anything. This is just an online spreadsheet into which you can copy the contents of another spreadsheet. And you can enter everything manually - it will be clearly faster than adding subscribers one by one.

Do not forget to accept the transfer to a paid account.

Integrated service

Select the service from which you want to import data and click "Next".

Click the "Autorize connection" button to log in to the selected service via Mailchimp.

On different services offer to choose different options. For example, on Google Drive you need to specify a table from which contacts will be read. And on Google Contacts, specify which user data to import.

As in the other options, allow the service to switch to a paid account.

Work with MailChimp subscribers list

You can remove subscribers from the list and add them to groups for segmentation. Open your list.

Deleting Subscribers

Open the "Manage subscribers" tab and select "View subscribers".

This shows all the people from your audience. To delete several people, select them with checkmarks and click on the "Delete" button.

If you need to remove a lot of people at once, poke a mouse at each one for quite a while. Open the "Manage subscribers" tab and click on "Unsubscribe adresses".

Enter (copy) here the addresses of all the people you want to remove from the list. Each address is from a new line. Then click "Unsubscribe".

Group creation

The group allows you to segment your audience. For example, choose people who are interested only in copywriting, and not Internet marketing entirely. Interests people will choose in the form of a subscription.

In the "Manage subscribers" section, click on "Groups".

Now click on the "Create Groups" button in the upper right to create a new one.

Here you can choose how the field for selecting preferences will look like:

  • Checkboxes - People can select multiple categories by ticking them in front of them.
  • Radio buttons - Only 1 tick and, therefore, 1 category.
  • Dropdown - dropdown list. You can select only 1 interest.
  • Don't show these groups - Do not create a field in the form of a subscription.

Now you need to specify the name of the group (Group title) and set preferences (Group names). Click "Save" when done.

Now you can create a field to select preferences in your subscription form, and place it on the site. People will choose topics of interest to them - and fall into the appropriate category.

To add a person to a group manually, select it on the "View subscribers" page. Open "Actions", "Add to group" and select the desired group.

With the tool "Remove from group" people can be removed from groups.

You can also import subscribers to the group. To do this, open it and click "Import to" opposite the desired segment. Please note that this feature does not work on free accounts.

Here you can immediately create a campaign for a specific group. Click "Send to", select the desired type of distribution - and proceed to the settings (the process is described below).

Selection of subscribers by criteria

Suppose you want to find all subscribers who were born on June 10 (well, you never know). In this case, do not do without a filter. In the "Manage subscribers" section, click on "Segments".

Click "Create Segment" to create a new filter.

Select a condition. For example, group membership, name, registration date, etc.

To create another condition, click "+ Add". If you want to delete something, click on the minus opposite the condition.

Above the list you can choose if all conditions must be met (All) or at least one (Any).

When done with the setup, click "Preview Segment".

All subscribers matching the specified conditions will be found. You can work with this list in the same way as with the one on the "View subscribers" page. To save the list, click "Save as segment".

Enter a list name. If you want to automatically add new subscribers to it that meet the conditions, check the box "Auto-update".

Creating a subscription form in MailChimp

To allow people to subscribe to the newsletter on your site, you need to create a special form. To do this, open your list and click "Signup forms" in the menu.

Here you have 4 tools available:

  • General forms - form designer.
  • Embedded forms - Generation of HTML-code forms for placement on the site.
  • Subscriber popup - creating a pop-up window with a subscription form.
  • Form integrations - integration with other services, for example, with Twitter.

Let's take a closer look at each.

General forms

Here you can create a subscription form. You can embed it on a website, send it by email, or simply give people a link to it.

Forms and response emails

This is a list of templates. You can choose one of them, and on its basis make your own form. The standard Signup form is ideal for embedding on the site.

Let subscribers pick email format

Additional option. Allows subscribers to specify their preferences about the format of the sent letters - HTML-layout or plain text.

Signup from URL

Link to the page with the form. It can be sent via instant messenger or placed on a page on social networks. Nearby are the "Share" buttons for Facebook and Twitter, as well as a QR code generator.

Build it

The designer himself. On the left is the form. Here you can change the location of elements, delete them and add new ones. To move a block - just drag it with the mouse.

To add a new object - open the "Add Field" section and select the required item from the list. No need to drag it, just click on the button.

To edit the created block, click on it or open the "Field settings" section.

What is there:

  • Field label - the name of the block that is displayed on the form.
  • Field tag - variable in which information is entered. This may be the date of birth, name, email, phone, personal preferences, etc.
  • Required field - tick if the field is required.
  • Convert to Groups - button in the fields with response options. Creates a group based on this object.
  • Field visibility - the field can be made invisible by selecting the option "Hidden".
  • Help text - a tooltip that pops up when the user clicks on the block.
  • Default merge tag value - the value that will be assigned to the variable if the person does not fill in the field.
  • Menu options - this section is in blocks with several choices, for example, in drop-down lists. Here you can specify response options.
  • Replicate - creates a copy of the object.
  • Delete - deletes a block. In the pop-up window you need to write "DELETE" for confirmation. It is in capital letters.
  • Save field - saves changes.

This way you can add to the form all the fields that you need.

Design it

Here you can customize the appearance of the form. Upstairs there are 4 sections:

  • Page - page.
  • Body - the form itself.
  • Forms - objects.
  • MonkeyRewards - Mailchimp logo. Always displayed on free accounts.

Each section has subsections. When you select one of them - the corresponding form element is highlighted with a red frame. So you will not get lost.

The settings are not very flexible. In principle, here you can change only the color of the elements, the font and the size of the inscriptions.

Translate it

This tool translates English-language forms into other languages ​​(including Russian). To do this, in the "Set default language" list, select Russian.

Here is an example of what you can do.

But it is not all that bad. You can fix this madness by hand. Just enter the necessary phrases in the appropriate fields. Just in case, on the right is the original text.

If you tick the box next to the "Auto-translate" option, the form will be automatically translated into the language of the user's browser. Given the quality of machine translation, the pleasure is dubious. Unless you want to manually edit all the necessary fields.

The "Text direction" option allows you to align all objects on the right or left edge.

Embedded forms

Want to embed your form on the site? This section is for you. You will embed the form you created earlier using the General Form.

Bookmarks at the top (Classic, Super Slim, etc.) set the appearance of the form. Just click on one of them.

On the right is a form preview. On the left - its settings.

Include form title

If you enable this option, you can write a title for the form. For example, "Do not be lazy, subscribe!".

Show fields

Show all fields or only required fields.

Show interest group fields

Show fields for audience segmentation or not. For example, a user will be able to specify topics of interest to him - and receive only relevant letters. This only works if you have created such fields in the constructor.

Show required field indecators

Shows or hides asterisks next to required fields. It is very convenient if all fields in your form are important.

Show format options

Shows users the preferences for the preferred letter format (plain text or HTML format).

Form width

The width of the form in pixels. If you leave the field blank, the form will take up all the available space.

Disable all javascript

Отключает все скрипты, например, проверку значений заполненных полей.

Include archive link

Добавляет ссылку на список ваших кампаний. Позволяет пользователям заранее посмотреть, что примерно вы собираетесь им присылать.

Include MonkeyRewards link

Добавляет реферальную ссылку MailChimp в форму.

Enable reCAPTCHA

Добавляет в вашу форму капчу от Google.

Copy/paste onto your site

Самый важный блок. Здесь генерируется код формы подписки. Скопируйте его и вставьте на свой сайт.

Subscriber popup

Здесь можно создать всплывающее окно с формой подписки. За основу берется шаблон, который вы создали в конструкторе. Итак, что у нас есть.


Позволяет посмотреть, как будет выглядеть форма в обычной и мобильной версиях.


Настройка внешнего вида всплывающего окна. Здесь можно указать, где будет появляться окно (Layout), задать надписи для кнопок, цвет фона и текста и расположение кнопки подписки.


Here you can choose which fields will be in the form, and whether they are required. Here they can be interchanged (but Email will always be on top).


Adds text above the form (Body) and below it (Footer).


Here you can specify the delay time (Popup delay) before the appearance of the popup window and its maximum width (Max popup width).

Generate code

When done with the setup - click on the button "Generate Code" at the bottom right.

The resulting script code must be copied and placed on your site.

Form integrations

Here are links to tutorials on how to integrate MailChimp subscriptions into Twitter, Woofoo, and Squarespace. There is nothing more on this page.

Creating a letter template in MailChimp

To run a newsletter, you need to impose a letter. Do not worry, knowledge of HTML and CSS is not needed here. Everything is done in the constructor.

Open the "Templates" section in the menu.

This page contains a list of templates already created. It's empty for now. Click on the "Create Template" button at the top right.

There are 3 tabs with blanks:

  • Basic - Basic templates with a bunch of settings.
  • Themes - more visual blanks with already selected images and fonts, sorted into categories.
  • Code Your Own - if the constructor is not good enough for you, roll up the letter manually or import the code from the HTML file.

Remember that you can redo any workpiece as you like. Although remove all the elements and collect the letter from scratch.

Work with the designer

The constructor consists of 2 parts: the letter body with all the objects on it on the left and tools for working on the right.

A letter template consists of blocks that you can edit and rearrange. To move a block, move the cursor on it, click on the square of the dots (top left) and drag the element to the desired place.

To change an item, just click on it. The edit menu will open in the right part of the window. If this is a text block, you can write and format the text. If the image - upload a picture. If social network buttons - provide links. And so on.

Tabs on the menu are usually 3.


Content: text, images, links, lists, etc. To add a picture to the "Image" block, click on the "Browse" button.

Specify the path to the image (Import From URL) or upload it from a local disk (Upload).

Uploaded pictures can be edited. To do this, click "Edit".

Here is a good graphics editor. You can add effects, crop the image, resize it, add shapes and labels, conjure with brightness with focus.


Design: color, fonts, alignment.


Settings. They are different for each block. For example, for text, this is the number of columns. For the picture - alignment. For links - the choice of icons and their location.

When finished with setting up the block, click "Save & Close".

You can create a copy of an existing block. To do this, place the cursor on it and click on the copy icon.

If you want to delete an item - click on the trash can.

To add a new object - open the "Content" tab on the right side of the screen. And then simply drag the desired item into the email.

In the "Design" tab are settings for the appearance of the letter. Here you can set the background, fonts, buttons, indents and adjust the version of the letter for mobile devices.

Upstairs is the "Preview & Test" button. Click on it from time to time to see what your letter looks like.

When done with the layout, click "Save & Exit" in the lower right.

Enter a name for the template.

Setting up a campaign in MailChimp

Here we come to the most interesting part. We have a list of victims and a ready-made template. The last part remains - setting up a campaign distribution. The moment when subscribers will receive their letters is close! Open the "Campaigns" section.

If you already have ready-made companies - they will be located here. To create a new one, click on the "Create campaign" button in the upper right corner.

Now you need to choose the type of company. There are only 4 of them:

  • Regular - sends a beautiful HTML-letter. If the subscriber indicated that he wants to receive just the text - he will receive a copy without typesetting.
  • Plain text - Sends a text message without images and formatting.
  • A / B testing - creates up to 3 campaign options so that you can test the newsletter and select the best topic, content and delivery time.
  • RSS feed - sends content from an RSS feed.

Choose the desired type - and drove on.


If you do not have any subscribers, MailChimp will offer to send an email to your mailbox for testing. If you have already created a list, you can select it.

Options under the list allow you to select some part of the audience.

  • Send to entire list - the whole list.
  • Send to saved segment - saved segment.
  • Send to a group - Sampling for different conditions. For example, people named "Peter" or inactive subscribers.
  • Paste emails to build a segment - here you can enter a list of addresses to create a segment.

Click "Next" in the bottom left corner.

Campaign Info

On this page you need to specify the distribution options. In the column "Name your campaign" write the name of the campaign. This is just for your convenience. Subscribers will not see him.

Email subject - the subject of the letter. You can even add emoticons to it.

The "From name" and "From email address" columns will already be filled in if you specified this data when creating the mailing list. But, if necessary, you can edit them.

The option "Use Conversations to manage replies" creates a special box to which subscriber answers will be sent. And then you can read them in the reports. This feature is available only on paid accounts.

You can refer to the user by name in the "To" section of the letter using the saved data. To do this, check the box next to the option "Personalize the“ To "field". And in the field that appears, enter variables, for example, the name (* | FNAME | *).

To view all the variables that are available for the selected list, click on the "merge tags" hyperlink.


In this section, you can specify which subscriber activities MailChimp should monitor.

  • Track opens - tracks the opening of letters.
  • Track clicks - under what links and what subscribers have passed.
  • Track plain-text clicks - by what links did subscribers follow who received letters without formatting.
  • Google Analytics link tracking - tracks user activity: starting from clicking on links in emails, ending with a purchase on your site. To work, you need to connect Google Analytics to the site.
  • E-commerce link tracking - keeps track of all the actions of visitors to your site that came to him through a link in the letter. All this can be viewed in MailChimp.
  • ClickTale link tracking - connects trackers from the ClickTale service to the email. Helps see how users interact with content.
  • Goal tracking - monitors the behavior of users on the site, and then sorts them into groups. Does not work on free accounts.
  • Track stats in Salesforce or Highrise — connects the Salesforce and Highrise services.

You can also automatically send a link to a letter on Twitter or Facebook using the "Social media" option. Select the desired social network (or both), and write an announcement.

If in letters you are going to send video, you can enable the "Auto-convert video" option. MailChimp will find all video files and convert them to a suitable format for distribution.

Click "Next" to proceed to the next step.

Select a template

Here you need to prepare a letter to send. Choose one of the standard templates, download the already edited one, or import the HTML code from an external source.

Now create a letter based on the template. Insert the necessary pictures, write text for a specific letter, etc.

Click "Next" to go to the last step.


On this page you can once again look at and check the mailing parameters. If something is wrong - click "Edit" opposite the desired item and correct.

All mailing is ready. You can send emails right now by clicking on the "Send" button at the bottom right.

Confirm the action with the "Send now" button. Good luck!

If the letter needs to be sent not right now, but at a certain time, click on the "Schedule" button. Schedule settings will open at the bottom of the page.

Specify the date of delivery of the letter.

Delivery time can be set in three ways.

  • Send a specific time - just specify a fixed time. The option "Batch delivery" (available only on paid accounts) divides the batch of letters into portions, and sends them with small intervals. This reduces the load on your site when a crowd of subscribers rush to it.
  • Send with timewarp - sends a letter at a time when it is often online. Does not work on free accounts.
  • Let MailChimp optimize time for maximum engagement - the service uses its own algorithms to calculate the optimal delivery time. Only for paid accounts.

Click "Schedule Campaign" to save the settings and run the campaign.

That's the beauty I sent to myself.

MailChimp distribution results reports

Now that you have sent letters, it would be nice to know about the results of your mailing list. To do this, go to the "Reports" section.

There are 3 tabs here.

  • Campaigns - mailing reports.
  • Comparative - a comparison of several mailings (available only to owners of PRO-accounts).
  • Automation - automatic mailing reports. I remind you that the automation of sending letters on a free account is not available.

Open your campaign report.


In this tab, you can see the openability, the number of clicks, revenue, delivery reports, activity over the past day and a list of the most active subscribers.


The lists of people who received the letter, opened it, followed the link, did not open it, unsubscribed after reading, etc.


The number of clicks on the links in the letter is shown in the form of a list or map of clicks.


Reports on the activity in social networks.


Reports on orders that people made by clicking on the links in the letter.


Paid feature. All answers from your subscribers are saved here. So you can read the history of correspondence without going to your mailbox.


Reports from Google Analytics. To watch them, you need to connect the service to your site.

How to share access to MailChimp

If several people are working on one project, it would be nice to provide access to the office to all of them. To invite a new user, go to your account setup page (Account).

Open the "Settings" section, "Users".

Click on the "Invite A User" button.

The invitation is sent by mail. Specify the person’s email and access level.

  • Viewer - can only read reports.
  • Author - reads reports, creates and edits campaigns and templates, but cannot launch them.
  • Manager - full control over payment, add-ons, other users and lists of subscribers.
  • Admin - admin, great and terrible. Can do anything.

Write a comment to the invite, if you want, and click "Send Invite".

MailChimp Rates

After registering at MailChimp, you get the "Forever Free" tariff plan. He is completely and forever free. But with limitations:

  • No more than 2,000 subscribers.
  • No more than 12,000 letters per month.
  • Some functions are missing, for example, sending event letters.

To change the tariff plan, open your account settings.

Open the "Billing" section and select "Monthly plans or credits".

Here you can choose a suitable tariff or go back to the free one.

  • Forever Free - free fare.
  • Monthly - monthly payment, the amount of which depends on the number of subscribers. 500 people will cost you $ 10, 50 000 - $ 245.
  • Pay as you go - you buy credits that are spent on the newsletter. Thus, you pay only for the actions committed.

Also here you can connect additional functions:

  • Mailchimp pro - An additional set of functions, for example, a comparison of the effectiveness of mailings or multivariate testing. Worth $ 190 per month.
  • Mandrill - service for sending e-commerce emails, created on the basis of MailChimp. The first 2000 letters are sent free of charge.
  • Social profiles - collects data about subscribers from social networks. Price depends on the number of subscribers.


In this guide, I reviewed only those features that are available on a free account. I am sure that when you pay a subscription, you will not be difficult to understand the rest.

Who can use MailChimp? Yes, anyone! Email marketing helps any type of business. Just do not send spam through this service. This violates the Advertising Act (art. 18, para. 1), and you have already informed the service of all your contact information, including the address.

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