5 things to consider before you sign up for an email marketing service.

A new email message in your inbox can mean, you are about to get your next promotional sales offer!

You've got mail Check your inbox!

And as it stands, you inbox may be LOADED! That’s  because you  are receiving tons and tons of email messages daily in your inbox.

But what you get almost always ends up being a sales proposition, a limited-time offer product or a discount coupon code . This is email marketing at it’s best. It hasn’t changed and it won’t change,

and that’s because

 when compared to other forms of marketing strategy, it is cheaper to use as it costs next to nothing to send an email message. This is perhaps why a lot of marketers put email marketing  as their number one choice of marketing strategy above other forms of marketing.

Infact according an article on this website

“For every $1 spent on email marketing, the average return-on-investment is $40.56. This is because emails boost click-through rates by 14% and conversion rates by 10%. source

Today, with so many email services available, it is difficult 

deciding between one  service and another.

But whichever program you choose should allow you to deploy your email campaigns successfully. However, with the amount of services available, making a wise choice as to what is a good fit for your business can be a daunting task.

 What to know before you decide on an email service

If you are undecided about which service to use for your email campaign efforts, then here are five things to check out before deciding on a program to use. 

1) Ease of use

Setting up an email campaign is supposed to be quite simple and not complicated.  A good email marketing service should afford ease of use such that you do not have to constantly email customer support for help.  

While there are great tutorials and videos to help you on how to setup an email campaign, the actual setup process may come with a bit of struggle.

2) Email delivery rate

You need to get your messages across to subscribers. But how successful are those deliveries in getting to them? How many of your messages 

will get to your recepients inbox and how many will end up in their  spam folders? How many will bounce or turn back undelivered?

 Whichever program you choose should guarantee an email delivery rate of about 80%  or higher.

3) Customer support

Problems can arise while using an email marketing services and frustrated, you’d want to turn to customer support. Here the efforts of a fast and efficient customer support service that responds to your needs in real time is necessary

as every delay in response, or the wrong kind of intervention can cause untold damage to your business. Therefore a good customer service is vital for your email marketing efforts.

3) Features

Email marketing programs come with a lot of features that only amplify the many ways you can use the program to help your email marketing campaigns work successfully.

Here is an image of some of Mailchimp’s own features

Screenshot_2

As you can see from the image there are so many features available to work with. The more features you have in one program the more you can do without having to use separate programs.

3) Price

Everything has a price and so does an email marketing service. Prices vary from one program to another but for better consideration you may want to check out the price structure.

Here you’d want to focus on a few things

Free trial: Does the email program offer a free trial period and if so for how long, 7,14 or 30 days? Find out if the trial also includes full use of all features or limited use.

Free with limited/unlimited features: Does it offer a free plan that you can use without worrying about an upgrade plan? Most programs have a free-to-use lifetime plan. This allows you to use the program for any length of time without upgrading.

Find out what features are included in this free plan and see if it can help you with your email campaigns. Depending on your needs compare the features available in the free plan with the features available in the upgrade plan

Subscribers and email: Check the number of subscribers you can cultivate and the number of emails you can send a month for a free plan and compare that to what is available with an upgrade plan. 

Usually the number of emails you can send with most email services for the free plan, is around 12,000 emails per month, and a list gathering of up to  2,000 subscribers. 

Starting Price: The starting price for most email services vary. Upon registration some offer the first month free. Once the free month offer expires then you must take on an upgrade plan to continue using the service and all of its features. 

Upgrade plan can start from as low as $15.00 a month and may have a price for different levels of upgrade. In most cases there are also additional services which may not be included in the upgrade plan but must be paid for separately.

Find out what additional services are available and see if they can fit your email marketing needs.

4) Understand what it can do for your business

Whatever email service you choose  should be able to help you grow your business by allowing you to interact with your customers successfully. However

just because you want to use an email service doesn’t mean you should go for whatever suits the day. If you know the potentials of your business and the level of growth it is having,

then you need to choose a service that can guarantee you all the necessary tool to help you,

a) If you are an individual

b) If you are a small-scale business

c) If you are a medium-size business or,

d) If you are a large business concern with a large customer base.

The email service you want to employ should be able to help you in your kind of business.

5) Prohibited Content

Before you sign up and start using an email service it is important to know what is allowed as content and what is not allowed. Some activities are prohibited from being accepted.

For instant if you are into affiliate marketing then using Mailchimp to send subscribers messages is considered to be in conflict with their Acceptable user Policy 

Below is a screenshot of Mailchimp’s prohibited content page that highlights what is accepted and what isn’t. As you can see affiliate marketing isn’t allowed. So if you are into affiliate marketing see what email service allows that.

Screenshot_3

Similar prohibitions may  apply in other email services and so it is always advisable to check out the policies of the service you want to use.

Finally

In trying to figure out which email service to use, it is always good to know the overall user experience of other users and compare both the negative and positive user reviews to make an informed decision.

This will go a long way in helping you decide which service to use. On a wholeif you are going to use a service, think of your business needs overtime and see if whatever plan you intend to take out will be good enough or not.

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