Graphic depicting various elements of SendPortal

SendPortal Review

In this first impressions review I’m going to have a look at self-hosted email marketing software SendPortal.

How easy is it to install and set-up, how good are the features and should you use it for your next project?

SendPortal Review

🏆 Highly recommended

Ease of use


✅ User friendly and simple to navigate
✅ Great support documentation
❌ Tricky installation for non-tech users


What is SendPortal?

SendPortal is open-source, self-hosted email marketing software to help manage your email campaigns.

SendPortal acts as a control panel for your email marketing, but doesn’t send any emails itself: it acts as a GUI to integrate with email sending services such as Mailgun, Mailjet or Sendgrid.

How easy is it to install SendPortal?

SendPortal is available as a one-click app on our Managed Hosting and Reseller Hosting, so installing SendPortal was as easy as it gets.

If you use a host that doesn’t include SendPortal in their one-click apps, their official set up guide can be found here: https://sendportal.io/docs/v2

It’s worth noting that manual installation is not as easy as the likes of WordPress and does require a certain degree of dev skills, using Git and Composer.

Setting up SendPortal

SendPortal smoothly walks me through the technical setup, and it’s clear what information is required at each stage to progress.

Once I’ve created my account and logged in; I’m left on my own. There are no onboarding prompts or on-screen guides on what to do next.

It’s a small niggle, and to be fair most people using this software will be experienced enough to work out the next steps.

I know I’ll need to connect SendPortal to an email service to starting sending emails, so I’m going to go there first.

Looks promising and it is very easy to actually do.

Once you’ve added your credentials, you can run a quick test to make sure it is all set up correctly.

Campaigns in SendPortal

The campaign creation content builder is very basic if you’re used to the likes of MailChimp’s WYSIWYG GUI.

You can put together a simple email using the style editor, but nothing fancy. This is really for users who can copy and paste in existing HTML through the code view.

SendPortal let’s you build and save ‘Templates’ to reuse content and designs across your campaigns.

Dynamic templating system also allows you to insert subscriber details (e.g. their name) into your templates.

Here’s a quick example using a free HTML template from Github.

The code:

The preview:

In ‘Campaigns’ I can now select that template to help build my email.


SendPortal allows you to easily import multiple subscribers via a CSV upload. This can be used to create new subscribers and update existing ones.

The following information can be saved for each Subscriber:

  • Email
  • First name (optional)
  • Last name (optional)
  • Subscription status
  • Tags (optional)

The tags feature is useful to implement a level of segmentation within your subscribers e.g. How much they spend, the products they’ve bought, their geographic location etc.

Account admin

With no billing or subscription fees, there aren’t a huge amount of options related to administering the account.

The only quirk came when I wanted to add more workspace members. The process is a bit clunky for a modern SaaS product, and it would be useful if it linked to a support article with steps on how to do this.

Final thoughts

SendPortal is a great choice to implement a simple GUI with your email sending platform. It’s free, easy to set up (with 20i) and has the features you need to manage your email campaigns.

Have you used SendPortal? Let us know about your experiences in the comments below.

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