How to Pick the Best Email Marketing Provider for Your Small Business
Email marketing is a fantastic messaging tool to reach an interested audience directly. It's cost-effective, and critical to the success of most marketing professionals. According to Constant Contact, "80 percent of professionals, email marketing drives customer acquisition and retention." When business owners shop for an email service provider, it can feel overwhelming, as there are many quality providers with a range of features (I know, I'm shopping now.) When looking for a provider, it's essential to consider your email marketing needs.
What is an Email Marketing Service or ESP?
In case you are starting from scratch, it's best to consider what an email marketing service provider is and what it can do for you. Email marketing services aid in the start-to-finish process of email marketing campaigns, from building your list to measuring performance. Their service offerings range by platform and service level, so finding the one that is the right fit for you is crucial to your efforts.
To choose which platform is right for you, consider the following:
The size of your current contact list and budget - are you starting from scratch, or do you already have a robust list? This matters as many platforms have pricing tiers based on subscriber list size and the number of emails you plan to send per month.
Your goals for your email list growth - this goes along with the above. If you are at a specific subscriber size now but aim to reach a different size, keep that in mind when considering price and capabilities.
The email marketing tools you'll need - while many platforms are similar, some excel in different areas. Will you send newsletters and announcements, or will you send transactional emails? Check out the offerings and advanced features like landing page builders, signup forms, templates, automation, segmentation, and more. Also consider the ease of use, like a drag-and-drop email builder, security, deliverability statistics of each platform, and resources or customer service assistance each provide should you hit any hurdles.
Finding the right email marketing platform takes a bit of research to determine which is or will be the best fit for your small business. Determine your goals, needs, and budgets before comparing services to understand which creates the most value.