Best 8 Email Marketing Services – Compare Prices & Features

Many successful online marketers and internet businesses know the importance of attaining and maintaining customer emails. It is the difference between making a profit and going bust for many online companies and the internet marketing mantra of the ‘the money is in the list’ is as true today as it has ever been. Of course, social media has provided more channels to connect with your audience but having the ability to engage with your websites visitors or customers by email is still incredibly important.

In this article we will be discussing the best solutions for individuals and business that want to collect the email addresses of their customers / web visitors (with their permission) and communicate with them effectively via email. This is of course possible by putting a contact email address or simple contact form on your website and responding manually or with a free auto responder but if you want to get more people engaged with your website or business you really should think about paying for a premium email marketing service.

The quality of signup forms, templates and sophisticated tracking are just some of the features that make premium services far superior than than just sticking up a default contact form on your site or using free email subscriber software. Sure, you may a save a bit of cash by using a free email auto-responder but that will normally work out as a false economy over the longer term.

Premium Email Marketing Services Vs Free Services

Here are some of the benefits of professional email marketing services compared to free auto-responders (or worse, no email marketing strategy at all):

  • Unlimited Email Subscribers. Free services usually have a limit on the number of emails you can collect and send out each month. Obviously, this can severely impact your customer reach and therefore revenue potential.
  • Customizable Forms. Paid services offer far more features that can be customized to your needs including sign up forms. This will allow you to adapt your design easily to different audience types and website landing pages which will increase your opt-in count.
  • Premium Email / Newsletter Templates. Premium services generally offer more professional-looking email templates and styles that can be created with minimal or no HTML experience. Better designed email templates result in more click through rates.
  • Improved Email Delivery: A premium email marketing service is more likely to get your email into a higher proportion of inboxes than sending emails from you own web based email account, self hosted email account or using a free email auto responder which may end up automatically blocked or in the spam folder. This is due to the increasingly sophisticated filters on many people email accounts. The premium services below work work with major internet service providers and often external delivery specialists such as  SpamCheck to get your messages delivered every time.

Main Features To Consider When Choosing An Email Marketing Service

Whilst many online marketers will have their favourite email marketing software, the right one for you will really depend on your type of website, the likely number of daily subscribers, your budget, your technical knowledge and any extra social marketing features you require. In order to decide on the which is the best for you need to check out the following features of each company and decide how they fit with your needs.

  • Newsletter / Email Templates. Look at the templates provided and asses their quality, quantity/variation and ease of editing. Are there ones that you would be happy to use straight away or do you need to edit them? Does it look like you need to get involved with HTML?
  • Split Testing: Do they have split testing functionality set up as standard. Can you set up A/B split tests easily  to analyse and optimize any element of your message such as the subject line, call to action, from field and best time and day to send email.
  • Landing Pages: Do you want a landing page creator as well as a form and email template creators? Some companies also provide this feature so decide if it is a must have or nice to have.
  • User-Friendly Interface. The software or service must be easy enough to be used by beginners, but comprehensive enough to satisfy the needs of more advanced users.
  • Customer Support: Check if the company provide a comprehensive support section, an active customer forum, online guides, video tutorials or live help. Video guides and recorded webinars tend to be the best guides outside of live help.
  • Tracking and Reporting. Creating and sending emails is only two-thirds of the process. An effective email marketing service company must be able to monitor the progress of the marketing plan to understand exactly how many have read your message and how many have clicked links.
  • Social Media Marketing: Decide if you need this now or may need it in the future before deciding on an email marketing provider as many can integrate the two services.
  • Price: The companies below will charge on a per subscriber basis but like most things in life don’t just choose the cheapest. Paying a little more can result in a big increase in features, customer opt-ins and potentially revenue. Also, remember to check the fees at levels that exceed your expected current subscriber levels. Hopefully you will build a huge list so you need to be comfortable of the different pricing tiers.
  • Integrations: Check if the service integrates with your existing software like wordpress, salesforce, google apps, magento, shopify, facebook, twitter, freshbooks, amazon, paypal.
  • Testimonials: Normally I would not put much emphasis on online testimonials as they are often not impartial. However, as it is very easy to which email marketing solution is actually used by a particular company by just signing up to their newsletter, you can be confident the endorsements shown are genuine. Therefore, you should give some weight to the fact that other companies and competitors you respect have chosen one provider over another.

So, if you haven’t already skipped ahead to the look at the list below, here is our shortlist of the best 8 professional email marketing services. I have included the pricing plans, provisions for annual discounts, and availability of a free trial account for each service featured in this article. The prices were all correct at the time of writing but they will occasionally run special offers so may be slightly different to those shown. If the normal prices change permanently please let us know in the comment section so we can keep this article up to date.

iContact

icontact

View Website Free Trial

Price

  • 500 = $14
  • 2,500 = $29
  • 5,000 = $47
  • 10,000 = $74
  • 15,000 = $109
  • More than 15,000 = N/A (needs upgrade to Premier Account)

Discount For Annual Subscriptions: 15%
Free Trial: Yes (30 days, limited to 100 subscribers)

As one of the most decorated email marketing services available in the market, iContact is an award-winning marketing solution that offers expert support, beautiful email templates, and an option for premier services. It has a number of excellent email marketing and social media management tools that can be integrated with Salesforce and its overall service ranks highly in several review sites for email marketing services.

Vertical Response

verticalresponse

View Website Free Trial

  • Price Per Subscribers (Monthly):
    • 500 = $10
    • 2,000 = $28
    • 4,000 = $46
    • 8,000 = $72
    • 16,000 = $120
    • 25,000 = $150
    • 40,000 = $240
    • More than 40,000 = N/A (needs custom quote)
  • Price Per Number of Emails:
    • 1,000 = 1.5c per email
    • 2,500 = 1.3c per email
    • 25,000 = 1.2c per email
    • 50,000 = 1c per email
    • 100,000 = 0.85c per email
    • 500,000 = 0.75c per email
    • More than 500,000 = N/A (needs custom quote)
  • Discount For Annual Subscriptions: 15%
  • Free Trial: Yes (30 days, limited to 100 subscribers) – Free Trial link

Boasting of a wide variety of marketing services including social media marketing, event marketing, postcards and surveys, VerticalResponse offers a user-friendly interface for email marketing designed for those who don’t have a professional design team or HTML expertise. Its has a simple three-step email marketing process to help beginners create email messages, send it to the right people and monitor its progress. You can choose from more than 700 email templates that can be customized to your liking.

AWeber

aweber

View Website $1 Trial

  • Up to 500 subscribers = $19
  • Add-on Price Per Subscribers (Monthly):
    • 2,500 = + $10
    • 5,000 = + $30
    • 10,000 = + $50
    • 25,000 = + $130
    • More than 25,000 = N/A (needs custom quote)
  • Discount For Annual Subscriptions: 15% (on base price only)
  • Free Trial: No, but first month is only $1

AWeber  puts its catchphrase “let’s make something awesome together” to practice through its simpler email marketing process. The company has helped over 120,000 businesses in email newsletter distribution since its inception in 1998. While it does not offer a free trial for its services, only AWeber has a $1 offer for the first month of subscription. It also has a 30-day money-back guarantee, much like most of the email marketing companies featured on this article.

GetResponse

getresponse

View Website Free Trial

  • Price Per Subscribers (Monthly):
    • 1,000 = $15
    • 2,500 = $25
    • 5,000 = $45
    • 10,000 = $65
    • 25,000 = $145
    • 50,000 = $250
    • 100,000 = $450
    • More than 100,000 = N/A (needs custom quote)
  • Discount For Annual Subscriptions: 18%
  • Discount for non-profit organizations: 50%
  • Free Trial: Yes (30 days, limited to 250 subscribers) – Free Trial Link

Tagging itself as the “world’s easiest email marketing” provider, GetResponse has attracted a number of big companies such as GlaxoSmithKline, iStock by Getty Images and the Hilton group of hotels. What separates GetResponse from most email marketing providers is the ability to integrate its service with close to 100 applications including social media giants Facebook and Twitter, CRM software Salesforce, WordPress, Joomla, PayPal and many more. You can also access GetResponse through the iPhone.

Campaigner

campaigner

View Website Free Trial

Price Per Subscribers (Monthly):

  • 1,000 = $10
  • 2,500 = $25
  • 5,000 = $40
  • 10,000 = $55
  • 25,000 = $120
  • 50,000 = $200
  • More than 50,000 = N/A (needs custom quote)

Discount For Annual Subscriptions: N/A

Free Trial: Yes (30 days) – Free Trial Link

No frills and no surprises; just a logical interface that delivers what you need. That’s how Campaigner tries to differentiate amongst its competitors. It offers services fit for any level of expertise: beginners and intermediate users as well as professionals and agencies. In lieu of fancy marketing templates, Campaigner offers instead a 20% discount on photos that you can use in your email templates.

Constant Contact

constantcontact

View Website Free Trial

  • Price Per Subscribers (Monthly):
    • 500 = $15
    • 2,500 = $30
    • 5,000 = $50
    • 10,000 = $75
    • More than 10,000 = N/A (needs custom quote)
  • Discount For Annual Subscriptions: 15%
  • Discount for non-profit organizations: 30%
  • Free Trial: Yes (30 days) – Free Trial Link

The target market of Constant Contact are small businesses and non-profit organizations that need a basic email marketing scheme that delivers. The published monthly price for Constant Contact is good for a maximum of 10,000 subscribers only – anything above that needs a custom quote. The company has a strong backbone of affiliations, including the Better Business Bureau, TRUSTe, and Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group.

Benchmark

benchmarkemail

View Website Free Trial

  • Price Per Subscribers (Monthly):
    • 600 = $11.95
    • 1,000 = $18.95
    • 2,500 = $28.95
    • 3,500 = $39.95
    • 5,000 = $46.95
    • 10,000 = $73.95
    • 20,000 = $120.95
    • 30,000 = $179.95
    • 50,000 = $230.95
    • 75,000 = $339.95
    • 100,000 = $460
    • More than 10,000 = N/A (needs custom quote)
  • Discount For Annual Subscriptions: 15%
  • Discount for non-profit organizations: 25%
  • Free Trial: Yes (30 days, limited to 1,000 subscribers and 250 emails) – Free Trial Link
  • Free For Life Account: Free forever, up to 10,000 emails per month and with other limitations

If you are starting small then Benchmark may be a good fit as it offers a Free For Life account. This gives users a limited number of emails per month for free.  Its comprehensive pricing table has the most number of tiers that I have seen anywhere, so you can customize your email marketing expenses based on your budget and not be too worried about suddenly jumping onto a much more expensive subscriber tier.

Infusionsoft

infusionsoft

View Website Free Trial

  • Price Packages (Monthly):
    • Essentials = $199 (2,500 contacts, 12,500 emails)
    • Deluxe = $299 (5,000 contacts, 25,000 emails, with either Sales Automation or E-Commerce)
    • Complete = $379 (10,000 contacts, 50,000 emails, with both Sales Automation and E-Commerce)
    • Custom quote available
  • Discount For Annual Subscriptions: N/A
  • Free Trial: No

InfusionSoft offers one of the simplest and most organized pricing contracts in the market, with four brackets of email marketing plans: Essentials, Deluxe Sales, Deluxe E-Commerce, and Complete. This simplistic approach has already helped close to 20,000 small businesses achieve their lead conversion targets, through marketing and sales automation, as well as e-commerce solutions.