What is Email Marketing?
Before we start with email marketing services, let’s start with the basics. To define email marketing in the simplest of terms would require us to be blunt. That said, we can then define email marketing can then as the use of emails to develop relationships with potential clients.
We have proven email marketing to be one of the most significant investments one can ever make. With a return on investment (ROI) raking as high as 4400%, it is the safest bet to place your money on.
Email marketing has substituted direct mail, entrepreneurs used which in the past to hit consumers’ mailboxes. Email marketing took mailing to an online platform from which marketers can now send messages electronically to the consumers’ inbox.
That marketing activities have nowadays moved online caused this move. This move has resulted in the development of a new marketing model, otherwise known as online marketing. The forms of this new online marketing include:
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
- Social Media Marketing
The glaring disparity between direct mailing and email marketing is that. In contrast, they sent direct mail to consumer’s mailboxes without their consent, email marketing requires the user to opt-in to your email list to receive your messages.
Benefits of Email Marketing
The following are the benefits of using email marketing:
- Email marketing is cost-effective, with a high ROI of 4400%.
- Email marketing is easy to use.
- Email marketing builds excellent customer relations and brand awareness.
- The marketer can reach customers where they are.
- Marketers can reach their customers with dynamic, relevant, and personalized messages.
- The automated email feature enables an email marketer to generate revenue with little investment in terms of time and energy.
What are Email Automation Tools?
These are the tools used to facilitate email marketing. Before settling for the best email marketing software for you, research its price, reliability, template designs, technical support, ease of use, deliverability, customization, and integration.
How to choose the Best Email Marketing Software?
The perfect email marketing software should have the following features:
- It should be affordable. The price charged should be worth the service and convenience offered to you. You must be able to justify the cost of the service. This can be done by going for the one with only the features you need so that you won’t end up paying for unnecessary features.
- It should be simple and easy to use.
- It should have the highest deliverability rate as possible.
- A/B split testing tools that help you get an idea of your customer’s behavior and thus fine-tune your email marketing strategy towards what works best for them.
- It should offer you a full analytics report which will inform you of the effectiveness of your email campaign.
- Easy personalization of messages.
- It should be easy to segment your contact list.
- It should hit the user’s primary inboxes.
- It should send the right message to the right user at the right time.
- Check how email marketing software works.
First, you need to understand that email marketing software works by using online platforms to send bulk marketing messages to a list of subscribers.
Launching an email marketing campaign enables you to reach your audience wherever they are without advertising space costs. This strategy is useful in gaining new clients, enhancing relationships with current clients, and also winning customer loyalty.
An ideal email marketing software works by providing the following essential features:
- Customized email templates.
- Dynamic content.
- Analytics dashboard.
- List segmentation
- Additional features such as polls, contests, coupons, and event planning.
What is the need for Top Email Marketing Platforms?
In the sales field, they regard email marketing as the third most influential source of information for B2B audiences. The only sources ahead of it are personal workplace relations and recommendations from industry leaders.
- Email marketing supplements information that buyers have gathered by word of mouth.
- Email marketing is the best way to build a loyal customer base.
- It enables an entrepreneur to reach users at the place of their convenience.
- It is revenue-generating, with a return of $44 for every $1 invested.
- Need to build brand awareness.
Best Email Marketing Practices
To succeed in the email marketing industry, it will take you more than just drafting the messages and sending them to your list of contacts. To achieve this, you will need to familiarize yourself with some of the best email marketing practices and also gain much from the email marketing industry benchmarks.
These practices aren’t hard as you expected, and if you play by the book, you won’t find any difficulties succeeding. Some of those practices are:
- Keeping away from purchased email lists as this will not only result in your emails being flagged as spam but can also attract a fine of up to $16000 per each incorrect email as stipulated under the CAN-SPAM Act.
- Always personalize the content you send to your subscribers. This can better be achieved by using merge tags.
- Strive to write catchy subject lines as these are the ones that will capture and keep the attention of the reader on your message.
- Send welcome email series to your new subscribers to make them feel at home and thus increase the prospect of converting them to buyers.
- Always format your emails properly to ensure that even a subscriber using a mobile device can read the message without having to scroll sideways. This is crucial.
Best Email Marketing Tools
Constant Contact Pricing: From $20/month
Contact is an email marketing tool that allows businesses to import customer data from spreadsheets and email clients. Constant Contact is an excellent platform for marketers using outlook and Microsoft word. It is one of the best email service providers in the industry.
Constant contact has personalized sign-up forms that can easily be embedded on Facebook or web pages to capture new subscribers.
To build emails with constant contact is easy, as it is done by a drag-and-drop interface. This means that your past coding experience with HTML or CSS is not a necessity.
It is easy to build and manage your contact list. They track and remove any invalid and useless email addresses on your contact list. This action will save you a lot of money since they charge constant contact subscription according to the number of email contacts in your list.
There is also a feature that enables you to schedule your email marketing campaigns. It automatically starts these campaigns when their time is up.
They designed constant Contact such that you can preview your emails to get a glimpse of how it will look like on different email programs such as Gmail, Apple Mail, and Office 365.
The platform provides you with a real-time analytics report on the progress of your campaign. This data includes the number of emails sent, bounces, successful deliveries, email opens, click-through rates, link clicks, purchases, and unsubscribes. It also generates a comprehensive report on contact additions and deletions, giving you the overall position of your campaign.
Extra features of Constant Contact:
- A/B split testing
- Deliverability rate of up to 97%
- Excellent email editor
- Customizable email templates
- Categorized list management
- Excellent live customer support
Constant Contact gives you a free trial, and you can opt into their paid plan, which costs $20/month for up to 500 contacts.
Free for up to 500 contacts. Paid plans start from $29/month for 1000 contacts.
ConvertKit is one of the best email marketing software for creators. Its design targets bloggers and online store sellers who aim to build high converting sales funnels. It is also the best tool for mentors, bloggers, and publishers who yearn to establish a deeper connection with their customers.
ConvertKit has one of the most attractive sign-up forms which you can easily customize and then embedded in your website. With its irresistible design, it would be way easy to convert casual readers to subscribers.
ConvertKit has excellent email sequencing and also an advanced segmentation feature to help you personalize your emails through tagging and segmentation into funnels. Using these personalized automated funnels helps you to monitor your subscribers and how they act. This will lead to an increased conversion rate and, thus, better business prospects for you.
Another essential feature of ConvertKit is excellent integration with some best matching tools for your business. It is now integrable with over 80 commercial features, which include landing pages, service providers, membership sites, and much more.
Extra features of ConvertKit:
- High deliverability rates.
- Easy switching from one provider to another.
- Excellent support team.
- Professional-looking emails because of the absence of email branding.
- Unlimited emails.
Limitations of ConvertKit:
- ConvertKit has a basic email editor with few templates. This makes it unattractive from the design’s point of view. It is, therefore, unsuitable for people seeking to create visually attractive emails.
- It lacks the preview feature, and thus you cannot know how your email will look on different devices and email programs.
Mailchimp is one of the leading email marketing platforms, with over 1 billion emails sent daily. It has over 14 million customers and is thus considered to be the most famous platform.
We can regard Mailchimp as a free email marketing software, as it is one of the few email marketing tools that offer premium features free. This makes it easy to explain away its vast customer base and daily email volumes.
This feature makes Mailchimp popular with bloggers and marketers operating on a limited budget or no budget at all. Since this free package has a limit on subscriber list size and several daily email sends, it best suits small businesses having at most 2,000 subscribers as they can send up to 12,000 emails per month.
For bigger businesses who wish to circumvent these restrictive limits, they can enlist for the premium subscription and thus service more extensive subscriber lists and send more emails per month.
With a recently revamped, user-friendly interface and added features, Mailchimp is at pat with other email marketing platforms in all aspects. However, the most striking aspect of Mailchimp is the fact that its free plan package comes with several features such as autoresponders, transactional emails, analytics reports, and third-party integrations. More advanced even is its Mailchimp App for Android and iPhone, which makes it easy to monitor your email campaign.
Mailchimp’s main shortcoming is that it does not provide email customization.
Pricing: Starts at $9/month
If you are after advanced CRM, lead scoring, and high deliverability rates of emails, then ActiveCampaign is your platform.
ActiveCampaign’s automation feature has an inbuilt CRM, which gives you an infinite list of customization possibilities. Automating your list segments hands you the chance to build list triggers and thus easily move users based on email content, sales follow-ups, and much more.
The benefit of the ActiveCampaign’s inbuilt CRM is that sales teams have an easy job of monitoring email flows through a seamless sync feature. This gives them an easy time with the lead scoring functionality.
ActiveCampaign unlocks the lead scoring functionality in the $49/month Plus Plan. It is a useful system used by large companies to cultivate personalized email leads. It awards points to individual subscribers whenever they act in a certain predetermined way. It awards each action point, and when these accumulate to a certain threshold, certain actions, they take certain actions on the user.
How the ActiveCampaign lead scoring functionality works?
- The first step is setting up the engagement metrics, which can be anything from an email open, a link click, or content download.
- Secondly, they assign scoring rules based on the amount of effort put on by the subscriber. They award more points for more significant activities while they award undesirable actions negative points.
- When these points reach a particular value, it moves the subscriber data into the Deals CRM and moves them to a new automation stage.
ActiveCampaign’s deliverability rates are the highest in the entire email marketing platform. They are your best shot at hitting primary user inboxes, and your emails have the least chances of being marked as spam.
ActiveCampaign’s reporting tools have features such as geo-tracking, click maps, and website visitors.
MailerLite is an excellent platform for individuals having a small mailing list but is keen on getting the best pricing and guaranteed deliverability rates. It has over 600,000 users from all over the world who have found its flexible pricing to be great.
MailerLite’s forever free plan is a splendid choice for customers having a contact list of less than 1,000. This is so popular with small businesses as they can access an email marketing platform to cater to its marketing needs while spending no money on it. This plan, however, has limited features, such as not being able to send over 12,000 emails per month.
MailerLite has a paid plan starting at $10 per month, which enables you to unlock premium features such as landing page builder, embedded sign-up forms, and pop-ups, all geared towards developing a better marketing strategy.
Extra features of Mailerlite:
- Flexible plans which depend on the size of the contact list.
- A user-friendly interface.
- Excellent email designs.
- Reliable 24/7 phone and email support.
- E-commerce integration with top platforms.
- Email surveys
- Great template gallery.
Aweber is the right choice for small businesses seeking to establish an online marketing presence. The evidence supporting this claim is the over 100,000 customers who have tried its services.
One important aspect of Aweber is its list management feature, which enables you to import email lists and create databases from common file types like XLS, XLSX, CSV, TSV, and TXT. It is also easy to create rules which automatically manage your email lists.
Aweber also enables one to create autoresponder workflow using it’s email marketing automation tools. They will base these workflows on actions taken by the subscriber, such as an email opening, link clicking, site visits, and purchases.
Aweber has a rich email design gallery with over 700 design templates. Some designs, however, are outdated, but still, great ones are bearing almost the same quality as the high-quality advertisements you see on Instagram. To top that, Aweber recently unveiled new web fonts, which, when used with the standard fonts, create more eye-catching emails.
Extra features of Aweber:
- High-quality email and phone support,
- The wide knowledge base from which customers can learn through the videos and manuals.
- Drag-and-drop email builder.
- Excellent real-time analytics report.
Major Shortcoming of Aweber
Aweber has comparably low deliverability rates at 10-15 percentage points lower than other email marketing platforms.
Once you sign up, you receive a 1-month free trial. You can even enjoy a 14.9% discount if you pay your subscription annually.
7. Campaign Monitor
Campaign Monitor started in 2004 and operates as an all-rounded email marketing platform. It is all rounded because it does exceptionally well in all aspects, making it hard to single out for any unique features.
Campaign Monitor’s main selling points are its 99% customer satisfaction rates and its Giving Back Program. The Giving Back Program is one in which Campaign Monitor employees spend several thousand hours each year doing community activities such as collecting trash from local parks and beaches, delivering groceries to local food banks, and also donating supplies to youth groups are at risk from several factors.
Non-profits and businesses both enjoy Campaign Monitor’s excellent email template designs. It also has a great email builder that hands marketers the ability to fully customize their email designs, extending to tiny details such as color and web fonts.
They give those customers concerned with their brand standards a reprieve through the Campaign Monitor Premier Plan, which allows marketers to block sections of emails to safeguard standards essential to the business and thus help them secure your brand consistency. What marketers can add videos to an email from YouTube and Vimeo is another plus.
Campaign Monitor has a state-of-the-art automation suite fitted with features such as triggers and email actions. They also have data segmentation is useful in creating advanced rules to which emails will be subjected to before being sent out to the subscribers.
For integration with third-party applications, Campaign Monitor is on the front line, having over 250 pre-built integrations with applications such as Salesforce, WordPress, and Magento.
Pricing: Starts at $13.99/month.
Benchmark is easy to use, fully-featured email marketing software with arguably the best drag-and-drop email templates.
Benchmark has several features, all geared towards facilitating successful email marketing campaigns. Such features include its infamous intuitive email builder, excellent sign-up forms, the A/B split testing, and the automation campaign tools the likes of email surveys, polls, and opt-in pop-ups.
One great thing about Benchmark is that the sign-up and pop-up forms that can be embedded on your website and thus convert new users to join your subscriber list. Once the newbies join your list, there are triggers set in place, which adds them to automated email workflows such as welcome series, which enables you to build rapport with them.
Benchmark provides you with a real-time analytics report on the progress of your campaign based on factors such as email opens, click rates, and delivery times. The surveys, polls, and their uniquely designed emails are great for developing and nurturing a loyal customer base.
Another important feature of the Benchmark is the inbox checker, which enables you to preview emails and thus get an unclear picture of how they will look like on various email platforms. The ease of integration with other services is amazing, with it currently incorporated into over 300 services, the likes of Facebook sign-up forms, Google Docs, Zendesk, Word press Plugin, and PayPal.
Sendpulse is a relatively new player in the email marketing industry, but this has not stopped it from already making its mark. It was started in 2015 and is widely regarded as a free email marketing platform, although there are premium plans.
When you sign up for Sendpulse, you receive a free mail plan which allows you, the marketer, to have a list of not over 2,500 contacts for which you can send up to 15,000 emails per month.
The free plan, besides these astronomical email, sends per month, has some extra advanced features. These features include SMS workflow and push notifications to multiple devices.
Major shortcomings of the free plan:
- It had a few template options to choose from, unlike most platforms.
- It has been reported to have slower performance compared to other platforms.
An upgrade to a premium plan will remove the restrictions on contact size limits and also solve the performance issues. A starter premium package will cost you $9.85 per month. If you pay for an annual subscription, you receive a discounted price of $7.88/month. Sendpulse also has a pay-as-you-go plan, which offers you 10,000 email sends for $32, translating to $0.0032 per email.
Mailjet is a platform that was launched in 2010 and operates from Paris. It is your ultimate choice if you have a large subscriber list to cater to.
Mailjet has a free plan which offers you the chance to send up to 6,000 emails per month or 200 email addresses per day for the unlimited number of contacts. Its premium plan starts at $9.65/month, and with it, you get to bypass those daily send limits. With this plan, you can send up to 30,000 emails per month.
Mailjet has a simple, user-friendly interface, which makes it easy to design and send emails in a short time. The performance scores are high, and its deliverability rates are also impressive.
The main challenge with Mailjet is that some essential features, such as marketing software and A/B split testing tools-despite being a necessity to any email marketer, are tucked away under an expensive plan which starts at $15.50/ month.
Pricing: Starts at $16/month.
Omnisend is the best platform for omnichannel brands seeking to market and remarket to their site visitors. It unifies email marketing across social media platforms, pushes notifications, texts, and much more. This has made it popular and widespread, evidenced by its use in over 130 countries and over 40,000 marketers.
Omnisend is designed in such a way that it understands website browsing behavior and can easily identify used device preferences based on custom events created by the marketer. This enables the marketer to send visitors more relevant messages across various devices and platforms. This feature makes Omnisend synonymous with e-commerce brands because of its high conversion rates. This is primarily because the marketer can send visitors messages particularly related to products they interacted with on your site.
It is possible to track visitors’ actions on your website to get information that will enable you to send appropriate welcome emails and abandoned cart emails to your visitors. This data is also useful in carrying out effective message segmentation for your visitors.
With Omnisend, it is easy to integrate all other top e-commerce platforms to drive up your sales volume. It is, therefore, easy to incorporate platforms such as Big Commerce, Who Commerce, Magenta, Shopify, or any other platform of your choice.
Extra features of Omnisend:
- Interactive sign-up forms.
- Excellent email designs.
- SMS notifications.
- Product recommendations.
- Real-time analytics.
To familiarize yourself with Omnisend, I advise it that you take up its 14-day free trial, and if you like it, you can enroll for its Standard Plan and, thus, unlock its automation features. This plan also enables you to send up to 15,000 emails per month.
SendinBlue is one of the leading easy-to-use email marketing platforms. It is the perfect match for marketers seeking advanced email marketing automation software while operating on a tight budget.
SendinBlue has a free plan which allows for unlimited contacts, but only 300 email newsletter sends per day. They design their free platform in such a way that it gives it simplicity and ease of use. This simplicity factor enables you to design and create splendid email templates.
Another outstanding thing about SendinBlue is the beautiful website opt-in forms and the automated welcome emails. It also has an in-built CRM in the free plan but is limited to one automation workflow for up to 2,000 contacts. For those seeking to grow their contact list, the Lite Plan, which starts at $20/month, comes in handy. It enables you to send up to 40,000 emails per month with no limit on daily sends.
SendinBlue also incorporates machine learning and Artificial Intelligence. This enables it to come up with an algorithm that determines the best time of the day to send emails to maximize engagement.
The other important features of SendinBlue are real-time reporting, excellent deliverability, automated workflow, and automated triggers.
The real-time analytics reporting feature enables you to access real-time data on the performance of your email campaign by displaying metric results such as open rates, link clicks, deliverability scores, and heat maps. Automated workflow allows you to set certain actions, for which when customers commit, sets off pre-set triggers and, as a result, categorizes subscribers based on their activity on your website.
Once those triggers are activated, certain actions are automatically executed by the software. These actions include sending emails, sending SMS messages, segmenting contact lists, and updating customer information on the database.
HubSpot is undoubtedly the most integrated email marketing software you can find in the entire market. It is the perfect tool for efficiently aligning your inbound and outbound marketing. It is also one of the easiest ways to design and send amazing emails to your contacts. The good thing is that you can join HubSpot for free and later upgrade to its Marketing Hub Starter Plan.
HubSpot gives you the choice of either creating emails from their ready email templates or starting from scratch. The great thing about the pre-designed templates is that it accommodates the addition of images, texts, layouts, and buttons. After designing the emails, you can preview them to see how they will look on various email platforms and devices to ensure that the emails will look great on any inbox.
Important Features of Hubspot:
HubSpot has two other important features whose main purpose is to ensure maximum engagement of your emails.
- The A/B split testing tool which enables you to select the best email subject lines and content that will maximize your email opens and clicks.
- Smart Send functionality which enables you to determine the best send times that would guarantee higher email opening chances.
Besides having 99% deliverability rates, HubSpot has an excellent analytics dashboard that allows you to monitor email campaign progress by availing data such as the number of emails opens and link clicks. There is also the time metric that shows you how much time recipients spent on your email. It tells you the number of subscribers who read, skimmed, or glanced through your email.
Benefits of upgrading to the premium plan.
- A fully-featured CRM.
- Excellent phone and email support.
- Mobile automation.
- Automated sequences.
- Gmail extensions for tracking email sends and automating outreach.
Pricing: Starts at $15/month.
GetResponse is well known for its contribution to the email marketing platform through its basic email marketing campaigns, creation of landing pages, and webinars.
GetResponse has various features, one of which is the advanced automation workflow. This workflow feature uses information that the customer voluntarily provides to create tags. This information includes customer location and their names. The tags are then used to create and send personalized emails that stand a higher chance of engaging the subscriber.
GetResponse allows you to integrate with your favorite apps such as Magento, Salesforce, WordPress, Facebook, Slack, PayPal, and Shopify. It also has advanced A/B testing tools that allow you to conduct tests on email subject lines and the email contents itself. This is useful in determining which email subject lines and content have higher chances of engaging the subscriber.
Extra features of GetResponse:
- Unlimited automation templates
- 5,000 free stock photos
- High deliverability
- Comprehensive email marketing software
- Excellent customer support
- Unlimited lead funnels
GetResponse has a 30-day free trial, and the basic paid plan, which starts at $15/month, supports a list size of up to 1,000 contacts.
Pricing: Starts at $49/month.
Drip is a premium email marketing tool that doubles as a cross-channel marketing automation service. This is achieved by utilizing e-commerce CRM data and marketing automation features. It is, therefore, no surprise that it targets e-commerce users, most notably Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce, and many more custom stores.
Drip’s main selling feature is the pre-made automation workflows, which require you to only alter a few details to create personalized emails. This is important in that anyone can create and send emails in a matter of minutes.
Their excellent visual email builder allows creating clean looking emails that will look great in any email platform or device. The automation criteria is also a great way of segmenting your contact list based on some preset conditions you have put in place.
Drip offers you the ability to track customer activity on your website. Actions like perusing and clicking are flagged, and using the CRM feature, you can tag and identify all actions unique to each visitor. This information, when then optimized and analyzed, is helpful when creating and sending personalized email content that would create meaningful engagement and establish customer loyalty.
Drip’s ease of integration with Shopify enables you to monitor what activity goes on in your Shopify store.
Once you sign up for Drip, they give you two weeks free trial, and if you like it, you can then join their premium plans.
16. Amazon SES
Pricing: Free; Pay-as-you-go.
Amazon SES, which stands for Amazon Simple Email Service, is a cloud-based email marketing platform committed to helping small and medium-sized digital marketers and application developers to send notifications, marketing emails, and transactional emails to their clients.
Amazon SES has high deliverability rates because of its IP address ‘ strong reputation among mailbox providers solely because it always filters spam and malicious content. Besides the high deliverability, you also get to create excellent personalized and engaging emails by building email templates that have tags such as customer name.
Amazon SES has authentication mechanisms such as Domain Keys Identification Mail (DKIM), Sender Policy Framework(SPF), and Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC) to confirm that you own the email address you are sending emails from. It also has a data monitoring feature that enables you to capture the progress of your email campaign by providing you with data such as the number of emails sends, deliveries, opens, clicks, bounces, complaints, and rejections that you can then analyze using the Amazon Kincaid Analytics tool.
Another excellent feature offered by Amazon SES is the ability to send your emails from several interfaces such as the Amazon SES console, SMTP interface, and the Amazon SES API.
Amazon SES has an excellent pricing policy, which makes it one of the best email marketing platforms for people operating on a small budget. The best thing about it is that there are no upfront costs or minimum commitment as a pay-as-you-go system is used. More important is the fact that you get 62,000 free email sends per month, and when these are exhausted, you pay $0.10 for every 1000 emails thereafter.
Pricing: From $9/month.
The sender is another cloud-based email marketing software that helps small and mid-sized businesses to create and manage email marketing campaigns. It is reputed for providing good marketing emails and transactional emails.
The sender uses DKIM and SPF authentication tools to maintain a good IP address reputation and, thus, guarantee you minimal chances of your emails being flagged as spam or being sent into the junk folder.
The sender has excellent email analytics, which provides you with real-time reports on the progress of your email campaign. It generates a comprehensive performance report with metrics such as email sends, open rates, click rates, and rejects.
Additionally, Sender has excellent website sign-up forms and templates which you can embed on your website. This will enable you to convert casual readers into subscribers.
The other good thing about Sender is that you are presented the chance to add graphics and media files such as images, audio, and videos to your emails to increase their engagement.
Other features of Sender:
- User-friendly interface.
- Scalable pricing.
- Easy to use subscriber segmentation tools.
- Excellent third party integrations.
- Well defined API.
- Email autoresponder.
- 24/7 customer support.
Pricing: Starts at $10/month.
Mailigen is a strong cloud-based email marketing software that is designed for small as well as medium-sized businesses. It prides itself on its excellent integration with a lot of third-party apps, e-commerce, and social platforms, the likes of BigCommerce and Facebook. Mailigen has different content blocks that enable you to easily configure and add dynamic content to your emails.
Main features of Mailigen:
- Excellent design tools.
- Pre-built templates.
- API functionality.
- Integration with plugins like Zapier and WordPress.
Mailigen has a 30-day free trial upon registration, and its pricing is tiered on the size of your contact list and costs $10/month for lists of up to 500 subscribers. You also get to enjoy customized pricing if you have over 15,000 contacts on your list.
Moonmail is another cloud-based email marketing platform that channels omnichannel marketers seeking to expand their marketing activities beyond emails. Moonmail enables the marketer to send promotional messages through channels such as email, voice, SMS, WhatsApp, chatbots, and Facebook Messenger.
The main unique feature of Moonmail is that you only pay for the number of emails you send rather than the number of subscribers on your contact list. This enables you to maximize returns on the investment into each campaign.
Other features of MoonMail:
- Drag-and-drop email editor.
- Interactive email headers.
- Great customer support.
- Wide knowledge base.
- Automated email bounce management.
- Spam reports.
- Compliance tracking.
- Premium support.
- Native Shopify App.
The only problem with Moonmail’s free plan is that it has stiff limits as it allows you to have 2,000 contacts and one campaign send per day. In each campaign, you can only send to ten recipients. It is therefore recommended that you upgrade to their paid plan, which will remove these barriers.
Although Ontraport is not a common household name when it comes to email marketing, it has been in operation for over 13 years. It is more recognized as a customer relationship management (CRM) tool rather than an email marketing tool.
Ontraport is more focused on automation and sales workflow, and is this the perfect platform for sales-driven organizations in the B2B and B2C industries who focus on this rather than bulk email sends and larger subscriber lists.
Ontraport’s main selling feature is its sophisticated campaign builder, which is more of visual marketing and live real-time reporting platform. This builder enables the user to create advanced automated email sequences and to work with other users in real-time.
The challenge with Ontraport is its astronomical pricing. It’s a basic plan, despite supporting only 1,000 contacts, costs a whopping $79/month. The is poorly tiered, as an increase in the contact list to 2500 attracts a fee of $147/month, which is almost double.
Pricing: Starts at $49/month.
Keap, formerly known as InfusionSoft, is an email marketing software designed for medium-sized enterprises that operate on a higher budget and wish to use one tool for their CRM and email marketing campaigns.
Keap prides itself on the fact that it was one pioneer of the drag-and-drop automation builder, which has revolutionized the creation of emails. Keap’s main features are all geared towards increasing customer repeat visits to your website, increasing the sales volumes, and building a loyal following.
Main features of Keap:
- Advanced segmentation.
- Subscriber tagging tools.
- Analytics dashboard.
- Automation sequencing.
On the other hand, Keap lacks the A/B testing feature, which makes it hard for you to test your campaign before launching it. This denies you the chance of optimizing your email open rates and click rates.
Keap has a 14-day risk-free trial that does not request your credit card information. After this trial period, you can upgrade into one of their three premium plans, the Keap Grow Plan, which starts at $49/ month for up to 500 contacts, Leap Pro from $99/month for 500 contacts, and InfusionSoft Plan from $199/month for a 2,500 subscriber list.
Pinpointe has a massive library of over 1,000 easy-to-use, super-tested and mobile-friendly email templates. These templates enable you to create and launch great email campaigns in a matter of minutes, even if you do not know HTML. The email templates are also responsive and will automatically adjust to display correctly on the user’s device, be it a mobile device, iPad, or desktop system.
Pinpointe gives you the chance to improve your marketing efficiency through the autoresponders, and trigger campaigns. To achieve this, first monitoring your customer’s behavior on your website and then using the collected behavioral data to create autoresponders and triggers. This information is also helpful in accessing the ‘smart-segments’ feature, which allows you to create personalized emails for your subscribers.
Extra features of Pinpointe:
- 96%-99% deliverability rates.
- Reputed IP address.
- 24/7 customer support.
- Real-time campaign analytics and heat maps.
- ‘Insert Social’ button for adding the ‘Follow,’ ‘Share’ and ‘Like’ buttons to your emails.
Pinpointe has a 15-day free trial for up to 15,000 contacts. Their pricing plan is primarily the pay-as-you-go type. However, there is also an alternative plan that starts at $49/month and is scalable depending on the size of your contact list.
Reachmail is a platform best designed for small businesses and marketing firms. It enables you to create professional-looking emails using Their easy-to-use email builder and the drag-and-drop feature. The other great thing about Reachmail is that it allows you to upload and store unlimited assets such as images and PDFs in their content manager.
Reachmail’s free account supports up to 5,000 contacts with email sends of up-to 15,000 per month, but some features are not available.
Main features of ReachMail:
- Full-fledged API.
- A/B testing.
- 24/7customer support.
- Contact list import.
- Advanced editor.
- Multiple brand support.
- Multiple user support.
The Reachmail paid plan cost $10/month for the Bronze package, which supports up to 7,500 contacts and 30,000 email sends per month.
Benefits unlocked with the premium plan of ReachMail
- Litmus preview feature which allows you to check and ensure that your email messages look great on all devices and mailing platforms before sending them out.
- Priority sending.
- Landing pages.
- Free premium support.
- Branding-free footer.
eSputnik is an excellent marketing platform for omnichannel marketers seeking to manage cross-channel marketing campaigns via emails, SMS, Web Push, and other instant Messengers. They support English, Russian, and Ukrainian languages.
eSputnik has great pre-designed email templates, which makes it easy to create and launch email campaigns in no time. It also has an intuitive interface that automatically re-adjusts based on the device the recipient is using. You can also launch multilingual Campaigns without having to do the translation, as the system automatically determines the sent language by inferring the customer’s location and profile.
eSputnik allows you to track customer activity on your website and create dynamic and personalized email content based on the data collected from their browsing history. You can also segment your contacts down to details such as location, gender, age, and purchase history for launching targeted email campaigns.
Extra features of eSputnik:
- Full campaign reports.
- 24/7 customer support.
- Product card generator which allows you to automatically upload media files such as photos.
- Scripting feature.
- Adaptive email editor.
- Easy integration with API.
The eSputnik free plan supports up to 500 contacts, and you can send 2,500 emails per month.
Pricing: Starts at $8/month.
Cakemail, a cloud, SaaS, and web email marketing platform, came into existence in 2007 and is based in Montreal, Canada. They design it for small businesses and freelancers with small contact lists and seeks an email marketing platform easy to use and go slow on the finances.
Cakemail has a rich gallery of content blocks and pre-designed templates, which makes the creation and sending of professional-looking emails a matter of minutes. It also has comprehensive analytics reports which enable you to track the performance of your email campaign.
Main features of Cakemail:
- High deliverability.
- A/B split testing.
- CAN-SPAM Compliance.
- WYSIWYG Email Editor
- List segmentation
- Quality customer service.
- Scalable pricing.
Cakemail offers you a 1-month free trial. They tier the paid plans on the number of contacts and start at $8/month for up to 500 contacts. For up to 1,000 contacts, you pay $12/month.
Moosend is an email marketing software that targets small start-ups that wish to improve on the productivity of their email campaigns.
Moosend has an excellent, easy-to-use drag-and-drop email editor for ease of building emails and newsletters within minutes, even with no HTML knowledge. Once you create and send these emails, you can make use of its real-time analytics software to track the progress of your campaign.
You can also monitor customer activity on your website and to that effect, using triggers and automation tools to launch effective email campaigns targeting them. The advanced segmentation feature is also effective in sending the right email campaigns to the right persons at the right time to maximize their engagement.
Extra features of Moosend:
- A/B testing
- Drip Campaigns
- Dynamic content
- Event-triggered emails
- Mobile optimized emails
Moosend is entirely free for up to 1,000 contacts and gives you access to unlimited emails sends per month. Paid plans start at $10/month for up to 2000 email contacts and give you access to a dedicated IP address, SMTP server, and landing pages. Non-profits are also in for a treat as they receive a 25% discount on all their credit purchases.
Pricing: Free; Pay-as-you-go.
MailGun was founded in 2010 and is a subsidiary of Mailer. It is one of the best email delivery platforms and has a Send Time Optimization feature that allows you to adjust your campaign schedule and send emails at the best time to engage your audience. It also has powerful email analytics, which enables you to track and optimize the performance of your email campaign.
Extra features of Mailgun:
- Easy integration with apps such as Python and Java.
- A/B testing.
- Email validation mechanisms such as SPF, DKIM, and DMARC.
- Batch sending.
- List segmentation.
- Different template designs.
- 30-day data retention.
- Geographic performance report.
Mailgun’s free Flex Plan offers you 5,000 free emails per month for the first three months and then charges you for what you send thereafter using the pay-as-you-go system at 0.80/1,000 emails. You can also opt to join their Managed Service, which gives you access to tools, expertise, and personalized customer support to optimize your email campaign’s deliverability.
Rocket Responder is an email marketing platform that prides itself on being the best at lead generation and email marketing automation. It is best suited for marketers seeking to have all their marketing campaigns catered for under one platform.
Rocket Responder lives to its name with speed. It has easy drag-and-drop design email templates that help you create beautiful emails in a short time. It also has great lead capture, list segmentation, and email automation features, which enables you to send the right email campaigns to the right people at the right time. This is to ensure that your email content always engages your clients.
As a plus, Rocket Responder has the ‘Social Sharing’ buttons on every page, which enables your contacts to always share the content you send them.
When signing up for Rocket Responder, you receive a 30- day free trial. Paid plans start at a flat rate of $20/month no matter how big your contact list is.
Pricing: Starts at $7.49/month.
SendX is an alternative to other high-end email marketing software such as MailChimp because of its ease of use and lower pricing.
The beautiful thing about SendX is that it gives you the chance to grow your email list using their highly attractive sign-up and pop-up forms. You can embed these forms into your website to convert random visitors to subscribers. You can also monitor customer activity on your website and use this information to create automated email sequences that will ensure you send optimized and personalized content that will engage the reader.
Extra features of SendX:
- Automated email sequences.
- High deliverability scores.
- Easy to use interface.
- Detailed campaign reports.
- 24/7 live customer support that typically responds in less than 30 minutes.
- Ready-made themes.
- Easy list segmentation.
- Easy integration with most websites.
SendX has a 14-day free trial and costs $7.49/month for up to 1,000 contacts. This plan comes with unlimited email campaigns.
30. Zoho Mail
Pricing: From $19/month.
The main selling feature of ZohoMail is the automatic sync feature for synching all your contacts and segments, saving you the need to update your mailing list manually. You can also track customer activity on your website and collect information useful in calculating lead scores, synching them to your CRM, and designing a workflow for sending automated email campaigns.
ZohoMail also gives you the chance to record email campaign progress data like the number of emails sent, opens, clicks, and unsubscribes using the Zoho CRM.
Extra features of Zoho Mail:
- Outstanding customer support.
- Deep integrations with Pipedrive and Copper CRM.
- Automated email campaigns.
- Pre-designed templates.
ZohoMail has a 14-day free trial that requires no credit card information. Paid plans start at $19/month for which you can access 1,000 emails sends per month.
CleverReach, a company, started in 2007, operates from Germany. It is an email marketing platform that has over 220,000 customers from over 152 countries.
CleverReach has a responsive email design that ensures that your newsletters will seamlessly open on any device and mailing platform. Its drag-and-drop email editor and neat layout ensure easy to design and creation of emails. The excellent email automation feature enables you to personalize and customize your email content. This makes use of the if/then/else editor for dynamic text blocks and the THEA automation tool.
Extra features of CleverReach:
- Comprehensive integration with CRM, CMS, plugins, and shop systems.
- Real-time analytics.
- A/B split testing.
- One-on-one customer support.
- Order reports from online shops.
CleverReach’s Lite Plan is free for a list of 250 contacts and allows you to send up to 10,000 emails per month. Paid plans start at $30/month for up to 2,600 subscribers.
YMLP has an excellent newsletter builder and an easy to use in-built email editor. These two facilitate the easy building of emails either from scratch using the drag-and-drop feature or from customizing the pre-built templates.
YMLP’s email scheduling enables you to defer the sending of your emails to a later date and time. This ensures that you send your emails at the times that they will most likely engage the recipients. It also has unlimited sign-up forms to capture new subscribers.
Additional features of YMLP:
- Precise list management.
- Bulk unsubscribe.
- Web App.
- Upload your HTML files.
- Personalized newsletters.
- Social Media Integration.
- Test messaging.
- API Customization.
YMLP is free for up to 1,000 contacts to whom you can send 1,000 emails per month. Paid plans start at $3.75/month for an unlimited contact size.
EmailOctopus is an email marketing platform designed for bloggers having a small budget but wishing to expand their marketing campaigns. We know it for using Amazon SES’s features to launch email campaigns at the cost of about 10x lower than for other platforms.
EmailOctopus’s main feature is its ease of integration with over 500 products through Zapier. This enables you to plug into apps such as Salesforce, Shopify, and SurveyMonkey to promote your marketing campaign. It also has a simple and powerful automation feature for creating and sending drip sequences to your subscribers.
Extra features of EmailOctopus:
- Responsive email templates.
- Drag-and-drop email builder.
- Real-time reporting.
- Custom sign-up forms.
- Email bounce handling.
EmailOctopus has a free plan for up to 2,000 subscribers and allows you to send up to 10,000 emails per month. The paid plans are scalable based on the size of your contact list. It starts at $20/month for 5,000 subscribers and allows you to send 50,000 emails per month.
EngageBay’s is a powerful email marketing software that offers a free plan for up to 1000 contacts. Paid plans start from $7.99/month for 10000 contacts. It is designed with small businesses, startups, and solopreneurs in mind. For anybody who wishes to build a high-converting sales funnel, EngageBay provides unhindered deliverability, helps you grow your business with powerful email marketing across the board.
EngageBay has a powerful email sequencing functionality and also an advanced segmentation feature to help you personalize your emails through tagging and segmentation into funnels.
There are many ready-made email templates to choose from and you can also create your own templates, personalize every part of the email, send them in a click, and track and analyze your results.
EngageBay may also be integrated with many other stand-alone tools that are important for your business.
Extra features of EngageBay:
- Create broadcast lists:
- Personalize your emails
- Enjoy Rich Formatting Options
- Measure your Campaigns
- Enjoy one-click for a great design
- Create emails with a Drag and Drop email builder
- Segment and target your subscriber lists
Limitations of EngageBay:
EngageBay’s basic email editor can have more templates for increased choice options
phpList is an excellent email marketing software designed for governments, educational institutions, businesses, and NGOs. It has dedicated customer support that offers specialist support, training, and consulting.
phpList has an excellent pricing plan, and you can opt to join their Forever free plan that has everything a paid account has. There is also the $1 Plan that supports up to 3,000 subscribers, and 9,000 message sends. There are other plans, like the pay-per-subscriber and pay-per-message.
Features of phpList:
- List segmentation.
- Drip campaigns and Autoresponders.
- Stop delivery in progress.
- Embedded images.
- Campaign testing tools.
Sendblaster is a mass email marketing software designed for managing huge contact lists and setting up email campaigns. With Sandblaster, you can send up to 10,000 emails per day. You can create and manage newsletters, and lists from your desktop, which gives you guaranteed privacy. You also get to access cloud email tracking reports, which enable you to optimize your email campaigns.
Sendblaster has free email templates, sorted by categories that help you create beautiful emails within a short time. You can also purchase tailor-made templates from their web designers and marketing experts. Sendblaster’s mass emailing software with Google Analytics will give you the results of your email campaigns. You know whether customers took actions such as purchasing your products or subscribing to your website. The free email stats service offers you real-time campaign performance metrics such as open rates and click-through rates.
Price: From $1.
Sendy is the ultimate choice for marketers who have huge subscriber lists and those managing multiple brands. It enables you to send bulk emails at low prices via Amazon SES. The cost per 10,000 emails is only $1, which is incredible, considering it still maintains high deliverability rates.
Features of Sendy:
- Send has excellent campaign results analysis and autoresponders that enable you to track opens, clicks, bounces, and complaints data.
- List segmentation and excellent handling features for complaints and unsubscribes.
- Third-party integration with Zapier and apps such as WordPress, Magento, and Joomla.
Purely paid platforms:
1. Constant Contact
2. Active Campaign
14. Rocket Responder
b) Both free and paid:
1. Convert Kit
4. Campaign Monitor
9. Amazon SES
Top 10 frequently asked questions about Email Marketing
1. Do I need email marketing services?
The answer is definitely YES.
Email marketing is the best way to reach as many people as possible at once and encourage them to do business with you. You should always keep in mind to stick to the objectives of your business, be it is to increase sales or to grow your website traffic.
2. Should I buy myself an Email List?
All the people you send your emails to should have voluntarily opted-in to your emailing service. Buying an email list will land you in trouble as you might land yourself a fine of up to $16,000 for every wrong email sent.
3. What is the best way to grow my Subscriber List?
To grow your email list needs you to develop and embed excellent sign-up forms on your website and other sites frequented by your target audience. Ensuring existing customers’ satisfaction through high-quality personalized emails will also get them recommending your services to their friends and thus, encourage them to join your subscriber list.
4. How often should I send emails to my subscribers?
This depends on the audience. Typically, between one and four emails per month is the recommended rate to keep your customers aware of your services. Anything more than this will flood subscribers inboxes, and you might be treated as a nuisance, prompting unsubscribes and being marked as spam. It is, therefore, safe to play between 2-3 emails per month, but if you have better understood your subscribers, you can then increase this number to anything that works for both of you.
5. What is the Best Time to Send Emails?
Each subscriber, marketer, and email marketing platform each have a different opinion on the best time to send emails. Some say it is great over the weekends, while others claim between 8 pm and 12 am is the ideal time. Others insist that between Tuesday and Thursday does the trick. This is a thing you will have to determine for yourself by sending your emails several emails at different times and gauging from the results of the campaign, you can determine the best time that works for your subscribers. Remember to try Wednesdays at around 2 pm.
6. How do I avoid Spam and Junk Folder?
Simple. Send unique and personalized content that would engage the recipients. The other thing is to always send relevant content and avoid malicious and low-quality emails.
7. How do I ensure that my emails look great on any platform?
For platforms such as Constant Contact, there is a feature provided for this, which you can use to preview and adjust how the emails will look on different platforms. In cases that this feature is not available, try as many times as possible to adjust how it will look on various platforms by executing changes after viewing it from different devices and platforms. With practice, you will get to master the actual design, and this will pay off.
8. How do I come up with the Best Performing Subject Line?
This is an important aspect, as people will only have 4 seconds to decide whether to open your email or to ignore it. You must, therefore, maximize this time window to convince them that your email is worth reading. You can achieve this only by sending a catchy subject line, which should be typically about fifty characters long. The A/B split tool will come in handy here. Develop two subject lines and send them separately to small portions of subscribers. The one that performs better is the best performing one of the two and should be sent to the rest of the subscribers.
9. Can I prevent people from Unsubscribing from my emails?
Unfortunately, No. The CANN SPAM policy requires that you should make it easy for subscribers to opt-out of your subscription whenever they like. This demands you put clear unsubscribe buttons on each page of your emails to facilitate this. However, you can try to control unsubscriber rates by always sending engaging content. You can also send your subscribers coupons and gifts such as e-books, to win their loyalty.
10. What are Deliverability Rates, Open Rates, and Click Rates?
Deliverability rate is the ratio of emails sent to the ones that correctly hit the inbox. Open rates refer to the percentage of recipients that opened your emails to the number of emails sent. Click rates, on the other hand, imply the percentage of customers who clicked the links in your emails to the number of customers that received the emails.
Five Pro Tips for choosing Best Email Marketing Software
#1: Look for powerful customer-behavior analyzing mechanisms
Since the main reason for carrying out an email marketing campaign is to increase the volume of sales for marketers, you need to understand your website visitors. You need to choose an email marketing software that will focus on the relevant user behavior analysis and give you the reason behind those behaviors. You can then come in with personalized solutions that aim at satisfying whatever the user was looking for. This will significantly increase your sales, and as a result, you get to enjoy a higher return on investment.
#2: It should have social proof
We all understand the anxiety we get when it gets to venturing into new investments. We are also aware of the need to get assurance that whatever we invest in will succeed. Email marketing is not an exception. The only way you will ascertain that you will get the services they have listed on their website is through a recommendation by a person who has used it. It is, therefore, essential that you check previous user testimonials and ratings for social proof.
#3: Always go for quality, not feature quantity
A good deal of email marketing software has tons of features listed on their websites, which in itself is a great thing. However, this should not be the only factor you take into account before settling in. You should check and confirm the quality of these features before making your call. This is because they would rarely use most of the listed features, and it is, therefore, paramount that you strike a balance between the number of essential features and their contributions to your email campaign.
#4: Look for the ability to add recommendations on the most unexpected places
You should never take the power of recommendations for granted because its ability to get customers acting is fantastic. Always go for the email marketing platform that allows you to add pop-up recommendations to other pages rather than the ones already featuring the product.
The software you choose should enable you to send abandoned cart emails to recommend products to customers based on what they already have in their shopping carts. You should also be able to send follow up emails to suggest products consumable with the ones the customer has already purchased. If a customer has looked at a product several times, send them emails inquiring whether they are still interested in the product and also recommend similar products. This will actively increase your campaign’s productivity.
#5: Adequate testing features
A good email testing software should always give you the tools to test your marketing strategies before sending them out to the world. This is purposely to ensure that whatever campaign you will launch will succeed and not cost you resources in terms of money and time.
The A/B split testing mechanism takes good care of this. It allows you to test the engagement of your subject lines and email content. It should also have excellent previewing tools for checking and ensuring that the emails will look great on the different email platforms.