Best for Large Businesses
Best Email Marketing for Small Business
Benchmark is the best email marketing software for small businesses. It is easy to use, includes a wide range of design tools and provides excellent customer service, all for a fair price.
With this software, you can create emails using a drag-and-drop editor or, for those with HTML experience, a code editor. It also offers a plain text editor for text-only emails. When using the drag-and-drop editor, you can create your own layout or pick from nearly 200 predesigned templates.
Best Email Marketing Software for Larger Businesses
Pinpointe is the best email marketing software for larger businesses because its Enterprise edition allows you to send more than 10 million emails a month. It has all the features enterprises need to create and send successful email marketing campaigns.
With the Enterprise edition, organizations can create and manage up to 250 separate user accounts, with each user able to access their own campaign statistics. The software is 100 percent private-label for enterprise users, which means email recipients only see your company's branding, not Pinpointe's.
Best Free Email Marketing Software
MailChimp is free of charge for businesses that have fewer than 2,000 contacts and send 12,000 emails per month. As long as you stay within these parameters, the service will remain free. With the free option, you have access to all of MailChimp's design, list-building and automation tools.
If you have longer contact lists or want to send more than 12,000 emails a month, you can choose one of MailChimp's paid plans, which range from $30 per month for up to 2,500 contacts to $150 per month for 12,801 to 25,000 contacts. All the paid monthly plans include unlimited sending.
Best Low-Cost Email Marketing Software
GetResponse has an easy-to-use interface and a wide range of features for an affordable price. The software is available in four different pricing plans: Email, Pro, Max and Enterprise. Plan prices vary by starting list size, included features and number of users. The Email plan is the most affordable, with prices starting as low as $15 per month for up to 1,000 subscribers. This plan can be used by one person at a time and includes autoresponders and basic landing pages.
The Pro plan, which can have three users at a time, starts at $49 for up to 5,000 subscribers, while the Max plan starts at $165 per month for up to 10,000 subscribers. Committing to one year of service lowers prices by 18 percent, with a two-year commitment bringing them down 30 percent. iContact also offers the Enterprise plan, which supports up to 100,000 contacts. You'll need to contact the company to schedule a demo and obtain a personalized price quote.
Most Flexible Email Marketing Software
Zoho is our choice for most flexible email marketing software. It has a variety of plans, so you can choose the one that fits into the budget of your company, and extensive tools that make creating successful email marketing campaigns a breeze.
Zoho's drag-and-drop email editor and automation tools are easy to use. You can customize your campaigns with your images, text boxes and social buttons. You can also see how your emails will look on both desktop and mobile devices. Its automation tools let you create and schedule email series and autoresponders.
Best Survey Software
SurveyGizmo provides all the tools and features you need to design attractive, user-friendly surveys. While this software is more expensive than other survey providers, it's worth the investment.
The software's online platform is easy to use and makes creating surveys a simple task. The software's icons are clearly marked and include a description of what each one does. When you click on an icon, a pop-out screen provides additional options for each function.
Best Email Marketing Software Overall
iContact is the best email marketing software overall because of its ease of use, wide array of design and mailing features, and intuitive interface.
iContact's email editor is great for marketers at all skill levels. You can create emails using your own HTML code or with one of the software's 12 design templates. If you use a template, you can design your emails with a drag-and-drop editor, which makes customizing them a simple task. You can add in element blocks – such as text, pictures, headers and logos – wherever you choose. You can also select your own color scheme or pick from one of 15 preset themes.
Email Marketing Service Comparisons
Email marketing is a cheap and effective way to reach your customers, build a community and increase sales. The best email marketing software allows you to send professional emails with little design experience. It also enables you to create custom, automated email journeys, and help you create extensive customer lists with segmentation capabilities.
Email marketing is an easy way to communicate directly with your customers who are interested in your business. You can also use email marketing to send personalized emails with the help of segmentation. With about 69 percent of businesses using email marketing, it’s critical to invest in this technology or you’ll fall behind the competition. Businesses use this software to send emails about company updates, promotional emails, newsletters, event invitations and to gather customer feedback.
However, to create effective marketing campaigns, you need to find the right email marketing tools for your business. Some factors that impact your decision include the design and list-building tools, price and customer service. This guide includes our recommendations for email marketing software platforms, features we think are important, average costs and negotiation tips.
Editor's note: Looking for email marketing software for your business? Fill out the questionnaire below to have our vendor partners contact you about your needs.
Below are all of our reviews for email marketing software and related categories. Our coverage includes reviews of the best email marketing software and survey software.
To find the best email marketing services, we started with a pool of more than 90 vendors. These included vendors we found through an online search and some we discovered by interviewing small business owners.
We narrowed down our list by eliminating vendors that don't specialize in email marketing campaigns or don't work with small businesses. Next, we researched each provider by investigating its services. We considered pricing when available. After narrowing the list down to seven, we contacted each company's customer service department and posed as small business owners.
During testing, we put ourselves in the mindset of small business owners, gathering information we think is important to that audience. We found information by visiting each company's website, making calls to customer service representatives, and trying out free trials or free versions of the software.
We analyzed each service based on the following tools and factors:
- Price: Most email marketing services have a range of prices and packages based on the number of contacts you have.
- Email creation tools: An easy-to-use and responsive email creator is critical. The best email marketing tools also have extensive templates that work on both desktop and mobile devices.
- Contact management: List hygiene is essential to successful email marketing campaigns. If your list has duplicate contacts or contacts who have unsubscribed, it can hurt your deliverability.
- Segmentation tools: The most successful and professional email marketing campaigns make your customers feel important. To do this, you need to send only applicable content to each individual. With segmentation tools, you can separate your contacts into specific groups to ensure they only receive content that's relevant to them.
- A/B split testing tools: These tools let you test different variables in your email and automatically find the best-performing campaign. While most email marketing services offer this for subject lines, the best programs can test success rates based on multiple variables in your emails.
- Analytics and reporting: Once you send an email, you'll want to determine how it's doing. Most services provide a range of data, including how many emails you sent, how many of them landed in inboxes, the bounce rate, who opened your emails, and the number of clicks and opens by location.
- Inbox previews: Inbox previews allow you to view how your email will look on different devices and desktops before you send.
- Spam filters: It's vital that your emails go to the right place; they aren't doing any good in a spam folder. Thankfully, the best email marketing services have tools in place to ensure your customers see them.
- Automation tools: With automation tools, you can send the right email to the right person at the right time. You just have to set up conditions, then the tools will take care of the entire customer journey.
- Customer service: The best email marketing services provide support through phone, email and live chat. Our best picks also have vast knowledgebases and videos to help you understand every tool and feature.
- Ease of use: It's important to have easy-to-use tools, including email creators, templates, contact management and automation features. You should be able to find the tools you need quickly and use them to create the exact campaign you want without having coding or design experience.
We sent out an actual email marketing campaign with each of our best picks. We designed emails with each service's email editor and uploaded contacts that included both Gmail and Outlook addresses. We rated each software program based on the success rate of its delivery and how easy it was to create the email.
We also considered how easy the programs are to use, whether you create an email campaign from scratch, use a template or import a fully designed email. Our testers, who have limited experience with HTML and design software, used each program's tools to create an email within the software.
It's important to choose an online marketing service that has a clean and intuitive interface so it's easy to find the tools you need. A well-designed platform means you won't waste time trying to find the solution or the support you need. You'll also want the service to have an easy-to-use email editor, contact management tools, and drag-and-drop automation tools.
Once we sent the emails through the programs, we compared them to the original email we sent to make sure they appeared as we intended. We also rated services based on where they ended up. Some emails landed in the spam folder or the Promotions tab in Gmail, which we counted against the software.
Social Media Integration with Email Marketing
While social media is an important part of marketing strategies, email marketing remains a vital method to reach your audience. When you use email marketing services, you can post sign-up forms on your social media platforms to grow your contact list. You can also schedule posts on your social media platforms and track your followers' engagement to determine what's popular.
Your efforts on social media may work one day but not the next for various reasons, such as changes to the site's algorithm. However, once a customer subscribes to your newsletter or emails, you're likely to have a long-term reader. Even if a user doesn't read your email, they'll probably see the subject line, which keeps your business's name fresh in their minds.
Survey Software: Important Considerations
Like email marketing software, your survey software needs to be easy to use for both you and your respondents. If you're just looking at ease, you'll find many survey-creation sites that will fit the bill, but there are other factors you should consider.
Design: Most survey software allows you to arrange your questions and tweak the layout. However, the best survey platforms offer additional tools to make your surveys visually appealing and are designed to promote your brand. Our best pick, SurveyGizmo, offers customizable templates in all its paid plans and individual URLs in the higher-priced plans.
Extra analytics: While most services offer analytic tools, some service provide more amped-up analytical tools.
Question types: The best survey programs have a long list of question types for you to use, from basic to advanced formats. SurveyGizmo has extensive question types, including dropdown menus and slider values.
Publishing options: Great survey software provides multiple ways to promote and publish a survey, such as embedding it on your website, sharing the link via social media or emailing it to your contacts.
What Are the Most Important Features for Survey Software?
Prices for survey software ranges from $20 to $50 a month, but most services have a free plan or trial version. The key to a successful survey maker is how easy it is to create surveys and for customers to take it. How easy it is to take the survey on a mobile device is also important.
Most companies offer tutorials and support for their services. Using the trial version of each program, we evaluated layouts and looked for things that would make the platform user-friendly. For example, are the icons easily identifiable? Is it apparent where to go to begin to build a survey and distribute surveys to users? How easy is it to create or change a survey? We found that the best survey builders allow you to quickly edit questions and rearrange the order of your survey without many additional steps.
Some other features we considered were available add-ons, question types, custom branding tools, data reports, email campaigns, integrations, publishing options, project types, security and survey logic.
Pricing and Cost of Email Marketing Services
While pricing varies by provider, the cost structure is usually the same. Most email marketing providers charge a monthly fee based on contact list size, with a range of packages and plans. With this structure, most providers allow you to send out an unlimited number of emails each month and have enough different plans to fit into the budget of any business.
Monthly costs usually start around $10 per month for 500 contacts, reaching up to $4,000 per month for 1 million contacts. While some email marketing services provide all features to all their users, others offer additional features to those with more contacts.
The most flexible email marketing services offer per-email or pay-as-you-go pricing. While pricing based on your number of contacts is ideal for businesses that regularly send emails, per-email pricing is better for companies that only occasionally send them. Some providers allow you to consult with their email marketing experts for help designing templates and setting strategies for an additional cost.
Most email marketing services offer a free version of their software or at least a 14-day free trial.
Most email marketing plans' pricing terms are set in stone, but there are a few ways to get a discount. If you prepay for a year, you typically receive about 15 percent off. Most services also offer discounts for qualifying nonprofits.
You can also sign up for a free plan or free trial before committing to a service to ensure you're picking the right provider.
Email Marketing Guide
Email Marketing GuideDownload
The Comprehensive Email Marketing Guide is a free ebook that will walk you through all the crucial steps of creating a successful email strategy and plan that works. Download it now to learn tips on: Goal settingEmail analyticsCreating a Strategy What to look for in an ESPThe anatomy of the perfect emailAnd more!
Step It Up!
12 Tests to Optimize Email PerformanceDownload Now
You businesses should make sure that every email is earning its keep, and the best way to do that is through testing. There is a multitude of factors that can influence email marketing performance rates. These 12 tests will take you to the next level in truly optimizing your email performance.
Make More of Your Inbox:
Top 10 Best E-Mail Add-Ons for Your BusinessGet Your Guide
The primary function of emails is to make communication easy and fast. They should follow a certain sequence to help you as a business owner manage your organization. Email add-ons give businesses an extra advantage by saving time.They help organize and manage emails sent to you by clients.
6 Email Marketing Challenges
And How To Overcome ThemGet Your Guide
The good news is that there’s always a solution to these email marketing challenges. Let’s take a closer look at the biggest issues plaguing marketers and the solutions for each.
Why You Should Outsource Your Email Marketing
Highly Effective Email MarketingDOWNLOAD
As new marketing techniques and strategies pop up almost daily, email marketing has truly evolved to keep pace with flashy new technology and capture the attention of customers. A great email helps you engage your customer and deliver your message, which can make a difference between a click-through and a direct route to your website or losing a customer’s interest and being sent to the spam folder. Modern marketers need a combination of eye-catching design, clever text, and attention-grabbing headlines to engage today’s consumers. That’s why we have compiled a collection of our favorite emails.
Common Email Marketing Questions & Answers
Have an email marketing question of your own?
Anne: How many "contacts" do you have on your list. Most plans charge by the number of contacts. Some charge by the total number of contacts, some by the contacts per list (which means you pay for duplicates if a single contact is on multiple lists due to your segmentation activities). As both Ray and Gee indicated, most email service providers will meet your functional requirements. I have used MailChimp successfully but switched to ActiveCampaign because of the marketing automation...
Hi Lexi! Email marketing metrics can differ based on industry. Often times email marketing can be another way to stay in touch with customer and remind them of your great service. I would evaluate your current emails and see if there is too much content in a monthly newsletter. Are people clicking? Are they even opening? Sometimes increasing emails to two a month with one featuring an employee or client testimonial which the other gives customers an offer such as a discount can increase...
Hi Bernie, actually time plays 3rd priority position to how you get customers to open your email. #1 is the message - what are you saying to get them to open the email?- on the subject line. #2 is making sure the content gives your customer information and opportunities that engage them into action. #3 is the day or time of day. Then as some have mentioned.. TEST! Be prepared to try different messages and times to see what resonates with your audience. Make sure to choose a service...
Your goals and objectives need to be different for whether it's an eblast (promotional email) or regular enewsletter. Eblasts are great for getting quick leads/sales, while enewsletters are better for staying top of mind, educating customers on new offerings, or providing helpful industry updates. I have found them to be very successful, but what works and what doesn't requires testing (of both the subject line and creative) and varies per business. Best practices for both types include have...
The email software can be learned and used to benefit your business. But the time it takes to learn how to use it and the best way to use it can be time consuming and a lot of trial and error. Although a email marketing service can get that out their for you, the cost can be overwhelming. So, you are going to want someone that also does your social media work as well in order to know your product and get the message out that you want. There are companies out there that can do both and...
Email marketing effectiveness is largely determined by your relationship to the subscriber list. Below are some common list relationships, that largely determine how successful you will be. Email Marketing With No Prior Relationship Mostly Dead. While the FDA does allow you to send emails to recipients who you have no prior relationship with, or consent to mail to, nearly every email platform will not allow you to send to subscribers who have not given you permission first....
1100 Manor Dr
14455 N. Hayden Road
2121 RDU Center Drive
Cakemail Inc. 4020, rue Saint-Ambroise
South Main St.
26380 Curtiss Wright Parkway
115 East 23rd Street
Sligo Enterprise & Technology Centre
8087 Washington Village Drive
7550 Wisconsin Avenue
155 University Ave.
. The Landmark at One Market
1801 California Street
4141 Hacienda Drive
251 Little Falls Drive
List of the The Best Email Marketing Services and Survey Software of 2019
Campaign Monitor Software
Campaign Monitor is email marketing software for businesses of all sizes that includes a drag-and-drop email builder, mobile-ready templates, free image hosting, A/B testing, social sharing, segmentation, triggered messaging, personalized content, inbox previews, spam testing, message analytics and contact management tools
Visit Campaign Monitor Software
Drip from Leadpages includes a visual campaign builder that allows businesses to design email campaigns based on subscribers' actions, decisions, goals, delays and exits. Features include automation, a lead-scoring algorithm that tracks several events to determine which subscribers are most engaged with your content and likely to become customers, and the ability to send targeted emails. Drip integrates with a variety of CRM, e-commerce, forms and surveys, lead capture, marketing automation, and membership and payment processing tools
Emma provides email marketing software for organizations of all sizes. It offers tailored editions of its platform for businesses, franchises, retailers, universities and agencies. Emma's professional edition includes a drag-and-drop editor, the ability to send unlimited emails, real-time analytics, audience segmentation, automated emails, and integration for various CRM, e-commerce, event, survey and social tools.
FreshMail offers email marketing software with a variety of features, including an intuitive template editor, mobile-optimized templates, social sharing tools, automation, contact management tools, an inbox inspector, a spam checker, A/B testing, Google Analytics, integrations with CRM systems, e-commerce platforms and a variety of other programs.