Tags and segments help you organize your subscribers.

Some email platforms let users split their subscribers up into multiple email lists. In ConvertKit, however, your subscribers all sit in one list—and you’ll use tags and segments to organize them.

You’ll find your lists of tags and segments in the right sidebar of the Subscribers page in ConvertKit:

And after tagging and segmenting your subscribers, you’ll be able to take certain actions with them.

Tags and segments can seem confusing, so we’ll share:

What are tags in ConvertKit?

Tags are labels you can add to subscribers to create fixed groups of subscribers based on a certain shared characteristic. For example, you can create:

  • A tag called “Beginner photographers” to tag all subscribers who have indicated they are beginner photographers

  • A tag called “Webinar attendees” to tag all subscribers who have attended your webinar

  • A tag called “Course pitch: in progress” to tag all subscribers currently going through your course pitch email sequence

Here, we have a bunch of tags to organize subscribers according to their levels of paddle-boarding experience:

Learn how to create and manage tags in ConvertKit here.

Tags will remain on a subscriber unless they have been intentionally removed (whether manually or through an automated process).

Subscribers can also have multiple tags at any one time.

For example, if a subscriber is a beginner photographer who has attended your webinar, then they can be tagged with the “Beginner photographers” tag and the “Webinar attendees” tag separately.

How do subscribers get tagged?

Manual tagging

You can manually add tags to your subscribers from the Subscribers page in the ConvertKit dashboard. We cover the process of manually tagging subscribers here.

Manually tagging your subscribers can be helpful in situations such as:

  • Manually adjusting the tags that your subscribers have. For example, you may be sending broadcasts to only subscribers tagged with “Pet Lovers.” If a subscriber requests to receive such broadcasts, you can manually tag them with “Pet Lovers” so they receive these broadcasts too.

  • Triggering the start of a visual automation or automation rule. You can set up your visual automation or automation rule to start operating when subscribers are added to a certain tag.

  • Tagging subscribers whom you’ve just imported into ConvertKit. For example, you can tag them with “Migrated from ACME Email Platform” to indicate that these are subscribers you are bringing over from the ACME Email Platform.

Automatic tagging

Subscribers can also be tagged automatically. Learn how to automatically tag your subscribers here.

You may want to automatically tag subscribers in situations such as:

  • Letting subscribers manage their subscription preferences. You can automatically tag subscribers based on the interests they’ve provided in your email form, or when they update their subscriber profile with you.

  • When subscribers have met certain conditions. For example, you want to tag subscribers who buy your course as “Course buyer” so you can exclude them from email sequences that pitch your course. To achieve this, set up a visual automation that automatically adds the “Course buyer” tag to subscribers who buy your course.

  • When you want to tag subscribers who click certain links in your emails. You can set up a link trigger that will automatically add a certain tag to subscribers who click such links.

What can you do with tagged subscribers?

After tagging your subscribers, you can do things such as:

  • Sending broadcast or sequence emails to only these subscribers (or excluding these subscribers from receiving your emails) using the broadcast and sequence recipient filter options.

  • Sending subscribers through a visual automation or automation rule. If you have set a tag as an entry point for a visual automation or automation rule, the visual automation or automation rule will trigger if you add subscribers to this tag.

  • Customizing your subscribers’ journey in a visual automation. You can use tags to set up conditional paths in visual automations, where subscribers will go through branches of your visual automation only if they have (or don’t have) a certain tag.

  • Filtering your Subscribers page graphs data. This is handy for comparing email campaign performance among groups of subscribers with different tags.

What are segments in ConvertKit?

Segments are fluid groups of subscribers who meet certain filter conditions. These conditions include:

Condition

Example of condition

Subscribers who have been tagged with certain tags

All subscribers who have either the “Piano Students” or “Guitar Students” tags

Subscribers who have signed up via certain email forms

All subscribers who signed up via the “Apple Pie Recipe,” “Strawberry Cheesecake Recipe,” or “Banana Bread Recipe” email forms

Subscribers who live in a certain geographical region

All subscribers within 10 miles of Boise, Idaho

Subscribers with certain sign-up dates

All subscribers who signed up after December 31, 2021, but before January 1, 2023

Among other uses, segments can help group subscribers with different tags or who signed up through different email forms.

From the first example condition above, you’ll see that you can use a segment called “Piano and Guitar Students” to group all subscribers tagged with either “Piano Students” or “Guitar Students.”

Then, if you want to send a broadcast to all your piano and guitar students, you can set your broadcast’s recipients as the subscribers in your “Piano and Guitar Students” segment.

While you could create a tag called “Piano and Guitar Students” to group all your piano and guitar students together, doing so might be tedious.

Your students would also have two separate tags, such as “Piano Students” and “Piano and Guitar Students,” which can add unnecessary tag clutter.

How are segments of subscribers created and updated?

Follow the instructions here to create segments in ConvertKit.

Once you’ve set up your segments, we’ll automatically add (or remove) subscribers from them as and when subscribers meet (or no longer meet) the segment’s filter conditions. Depending on your subscribers’ interactions with you, the list of subscribers in a segment could change as often as a few times a day.

For example, you may have a segment for all subscribers who have bought your product. On January 1, 2022, at 10 a.m., you had 100 subscribers in this segment. But on the same day at 10.05 a.m., a new subscriber buys your product.

We’ll then automatically update your segment to contain 101 subscribers. Woohoo! 🎉

What can you do with subscribers in a segment?

After adding subscribers to a segment, you can do things such as:

  • Sending broadcast or sequence emails to only these subscribers (or excluding these subscribers from receiving your emails) using the broadcast and sequence recipient filter options.

  • Filtering your Subscribers page graphs data. This is handy for comparing email campaign performance among different segments of subscribers.

Summary table: when to use a tag or segment in ConvertKit

When organizing subscribers

Situation

Tag

Segment

Create a fixed group of subscribers based on a certain shared characteristic

✔️ (Tags will remain on subscribers unless intentionally removed)

❌ (Subscribers in segments are automatically updated based on your segment’s filter conditions)

Create a fluid group of subscribers that automatically updates as and when subscribers meet (or no longer meet) certain filter conditions

✔️ (Depending on your subscribers’ interactions with you, the list of subscribers in a segment can change as often as a few times a day)

Grouping subscribers in some way that you can’t easily do with tags (such as grouping subscribers with different tags, or grouping subscribers by subscribe date)

✔️

Actions you can take with tagged/segmented subscribers

Situation

Tag

Segment

Send a sequence or broadcast email to a certain group of subscribers (or exclude this group of subscribers from receiving your email)

✔️

NOTE: We’d recommend using a segment instead of a tag if you have more complex email recipient conditions (such as sending your email to subscribers tagged with different tags)

✔️

Let subscribers indicate their interests when subscribing to your email list or when managing their subscriber preferences

✔️

❌ (Our subscriber preferences feature makes use of tags instead of segments)

Trigger a visual automation or automation rule

✔️

❌ (Segments can’t be used to trigger visual automations or automation rules)

Set up conditional paths to customize your subscribers’ journey in a visual automation

✔️

NOTE: While you can’t use pre-saved segments in conditional paths, you can achieve the same effect by recreating your segments using the Advanced filter conditional path option.

Filtering your Subscribers page graph data

✔️

✔️

Now that you know when to use tags and segments, what are the benefits of using them to organize your subscribers? Find out in this Tradecraft blog post 👇

The essential guide to email segmentation

Did this answer your question?