Your checklist for a smooth migration from ActiveCampaign
Migrating all your contacts, forms, email templates, and whatnot from ActiveCampaign to ConvertKit can seem intimidating if you're new to our platform. Let's walk through the general process for moving everything over as painlessly as possible:
Familiarize yourself with ConvertKit's terminology
What we call certain email marketing terminology may differ from what you're used to calling things in ActiveCampaign. The table below provides an overview of what's different (and what's the same).
Check it out and take some time to understand our terminology—this knowledge will come in handy as you navigate our platform. Feel free to bookmark this guide for future reference too!
Definition / Feature
A person who joins your email list
Your collection of email addresses
NOTE: While you can have multiple lists in ActiveCampaign, you'll have only one list for all subscribers in your ConvertKit account. Learn more about our subscriber-centric approach here.
Form / Landing page
Design the look and contents of your emails
Send a one-off email
Standard Campaign / Split Testing Campaign / RSS Triggered Campaign
Send an automated email (or a series of them)
Automated Campaign / Auto Responder Campaign / Date-Based Campaign
Trigger actions based on subscriber behavior
Group subscribers with shared characteristics
Group subscribers who match certain conditions
Segment / Segment Group
Import your ActiveCampaign contacts
To bring over your contacts, export them from ActiveCampaign as a CSV file first.
Delete all the columns from this CSV except for these ones:
Your CSV file should look something like this:
Next, go to the Subscribers page in ConvertKit under the Grow tab in the navigation. Click the Add Subscribers button, followed by Import a CSV.
Upload your CSV file to the importer and select the forms, sequences, or tags that you want to add your contacts to.
You'll need to add your contacts to at least one of these for the import to proceed. If you don't have any forms, sequences, or tags to add your contacts to, we suggest creating a temporary tag (give it any name you want), adding your contacts to this tag, and then deleting the temporary tag after the import has completed.
So once you've selected the forms, sequences, or tags to add your contacts to, map your CSV columns to these fields:
List Name → Comma-separated list of tags (In ConvertKit, you'll keep track of your lists using tags instead.)
Email → Email
First Name → First name
(When you map the "List Name" column to the field for a comma-separated list of tags, you won't be able to map your "Tags" column to the same field. No worries though—we'll take care of this in a bit!)
Click the Import Subscribers button to import your contacts.
When the import is complete, re-import the same CSV file into ConvertKit—this time mapping your CSV columns to just these fields:
Email → Email
Tags → Comma-separated list of tags
Doing this will import your contacts' tags into ConvertKit!
⚠️ Do not modify the CSV file data in between imports as such modification can cause the accidental overwriting of your contacts' data in ConvertKit. This is due to the way we import subscriber data into ConvertKit, which you can read about here.
Learn more about importing subscribers into ConvertKit in our separate guide.
NOTE: If your ActiveCampaign contacts have custom fields, such as a custom field for their last name, follow the steps here for importing these custom fields into ConvertKit.
Recreate your ActiveCampaign forms and landing pages
Select the Grow tab in the navigation, followed by Landing Pages & Forms, to launch the Landing Page & Form Signups screen.
From there, click the + Create new button to create a new ConvertKit form or landing page.
Choose a form or landing page template that matches your ActiveCampaign form or landing page the most closely, then use our form or landing page builder to customize your ConvertKit form or landing page (as relevant).
Given the differences between our and ActiveCampaign's builders, you may not be able to make your ConvertKit form or landing page look exactly the same as your ActiveCampaign one. But use this opportunity to revamp the look of your forms and landing pages!
Then when you're happy with your ConvertKit forms and landing pages, publish and replace your ActiveCampaign ones with them. 🧹
Learn more about creating forms and landing pages in ConvertKit here:
Recreate your ActiveCampaign email templates
Go to Email Templates under the Send tab in the navigation to create a new email template in ConvertKit.
Select an email template that resembles your ActiveCampaign email template the most closely, then use our visual email template editor to customize the template.
Try to design the template's text, colors, and fonts such that it looks similar to—or even better than!—its ActiveCampaign counterpart.
Recreate your ActiveCampaign Automated, Auto Responder, and Date-Based campaigns
Recreating your ActiveCampaign Automated, Auto Responder, and Date-Based campaigns involves setting up a "sequence" in ConvertKit.
A sequence is a set of automated emails that are sent according to preset send schedules. To send the emails in your sequence, you'll need to add the sequence to a ConvertKit visual automation (more on this in the next section).
Start a new ConvertKit sequence by clicking the Send tab in the navigation, followed by Sequences, and finally the + New sequence button.
Copy/paste the contents of your ActiveCampaign Automated, Auto Responder, or Date-Based campaigns into the sequence, adding extra sequence emails as you may need. Use the Settings option if you want to change your sequence's email template.
In addition, set up the sequence emails' send schedules to match those for your ActiveCampaign campaign.
For example, if a subscriber previously received your ActiveCampaign Auto Responder campaign immediately after subscribing to your email list, then set the send schedule for the first email in your ConvertKit sequence to zero days after the last email (such that the email will be sent immediately).
Alternatively, if you're recreating a Date-Based campaign, set up your sequence email's automatic send date using a Delay until a custom date action in your ConvertKit visual automation.
Recreate your ActiveCampaign automations
From the Automate tab in the navigation, go to Visual Automations and click + New automation to start a new visual automation.
ConvertKit's visual automations interface is similar to ActiveCampaign's, so you may find yourself getting used to it quite quickly.
Entry points (known as "triggers" in ActiveCampaign) to kick-start your visual automation, and
Steps (known as "actions" in ActiveCampaign), to set up how subscribers progress through your visual automation. These steps can be automation events, actions, or conditions.
So to recreate your ActiveCampaign automation as a ConvertKit visual automation:
Set up visual automation entry points that correspond to your ActiveCampaign automation's triggers.
Add visual automation steps that correspond to your ActiveCampaign automation's actions.
For example, if your ActiveCampaign automation sends subscribers one email per week for three weeks after they've subscribed via your email form, you could set up your ConvertKit visual automation in this manner:
Entry point: Subscribers join your email form
Step: Add subscriber to email sequence (where you've set up this sequence as a set of three emails, with the first email being sent immediately and the next two being sent seven days after the previous email)
Test your migrated ActiveCampaign setup
The final thing to do after you've recreated your ActiveCampaign setup in ConvertKit is to test that it works.
You can do so by:
Previewing your forms and landing pages (on your website, if possible) to confirm that they look good.
Previewing your sequence emails from the ConvertKit sequence editor or by sending yourself a test email.
Testing your visual automations. Enter your visual automations from one of their entry points (such as subscribing to your own form) and check what happens when you do so.
If you're having trouble with your ActiveCampaign migration, reach out to our migrations team and they'll be happy to help out!
Otherwise, if all is good, you could start sending one-off emails, or "broadcasts," to your subscribers. (ActiveCampaign generally calls these Standard Campaigns.) Find out more about sending broadcasts in the article linked below 👇