How to create segments in ActiveCampaign



A segment is a subgroup of contacts to which you can send highly targeted campaigns. Segments can be created by using any information available to you in the segment builder. This includes tags, standard and custom field information, website visits, actions, contact or deal score, and more.

Sending targeted email campaigns to a segment has a variety of benefits. When contacts receive messages that are relevant to them, they're more likely to pay attention to your campaigns. This creates a positive feedback loop where your campaigns are opened more and receive more clicks.

This helps your deliverability, strengthens your relationship with your contacts, and will likely result in more sales. 

Take note

When you schedule a campaign, the segment will include all contacts who meet the segment conditions when the campaign is sent. Not at the time the campaign is scheduled.

Segment condition limitations

While you can use virtually any information available to you in the segment builder to create a segment, there are limitations around the number of conditions you can use:

  • You can use up to a total of 20 conditions in a segment
  • You can use up to 5 "Action" type conditions. (This includes any condition listed under "Actions" in the segment builder)
  • You can use up to 3 conditions that use the "Contains" operator

How to create a segment with Advanced Search

Creating a segment from an Advanced Search pulls in all contacts that meet the segment conditions, including inactive contacts.

The number of contacts for a segment can be displayed as smaller when viewing the Campaign Summary page before sending an email.

  1. Click Contacts to go to the Contacts Overview page. 
  2. Click the "Search contacts" field, then click "Advanced Search."
  3. The segment builder will appear at the top of the page. Create your segment condition by clicking the left-most field that says "(Select a condition)." This will display a dropdown of condition categories.
  4. Click any category to display its conditions, then click the segment condition you want to use.  
  5. Depending on the search condition you select, you may or may not need to choose an operator when defining your own search criteria. To choose an operator, click the middle field and click the operator you would like to use.
  6. Next, you'll need to provide a value for your segment condition. To do so, click the right-most field and click one of the options listed.

    Here is an example of a segment created using the Advanced Search option:

  7. Click the "Search" button.

The page will reload, and all contacts who meet your conditions will be listed.

To save the segment, click into the field where it says "(X conditions set"). The segment builder will expand and display your conditions. Click "Save As Segment." In the modal window, type the name of the segment and click "Save."

Add multiple conditions to your segment

You can add multiple conditions to your segment. When adding another condition to your segment, you can decide if the segment should look for contacts who match both requirements simultaneously or just one of the requirements.

To add another condition to your segment, click "+ Add another condition." This will display another row to define another condition.


Note that there is a toggle to specify whether the additional condition is added with "And or Or" logic:

  • "And"
    This option combines the conditions so that only contacts who match both conditions would be pulled into the segment.
  • "Or"
    This option displays contacts who match either condition.

When using multiple conditions in a single segment group, you cannot combine "And" with "Or" logic. You must create a new segment group to combine "And" with "Or" logic. 

Learn more about using "And" and "Or" logic with searches and segments

Create Segment Groups

Segment Groups let you combine multi-dimensional conditions with "And and Or" logic. You will want to use Segment Groups to mix "And and Or" statements when creating an Advanced Search or Segment.

For example, you might have one segment group that pulls contacts with a certain tag and subscribed to a certain list and another that looks for contacts who went through a certain automation or visited a page on your site. 

Click the "Add a New Segment Group" button to add a segment group. Then, follow the steps above to create the segment conditions. 


How to create a segment during campaign creation

Available on Marketing Lite, Plus, Professional, and Enterprise.

You have the option to create a segment during the campaign creation process. This lets you quickly create your segment without navigating away from your campaign.

  1. From the Campaigns overview page, create a new campaign.
  2. When you're at the "List" stage of the campaign creation process, you'll be asked to select the list of contacts who should receive the campaign.
  3. Click the checkbox next to the lists you want to send to. When you do, a new option will appear, “Segment Selected Lists:”
  4. If you already created a segment, click the "Select a segment" dropdown and click the segment you wish to use.
  5. To create a new segment from this page, click "Create New Segment."
  6. A modal window will appear where you can create a new segment. Type the segment name into the field provided and click the "Add Your First Condition" button.
  7. The segment builder will appear. Use this segment builder to create your segment. When you're done adding your conditions, click "Done."
  8. The segment you created should be selected in the segment dropdown.
  9. Click “Next” in the upper right-hand corner to continue to the design step of the campaign creation process.

Note about all segments: If you schedule a campaign, the segment will include all contacts in your account who meet the segment conditions at the time the campaign is sent. Not at the time the campaign is scheduled.

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