Summary Bench Email
For many an evening in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a small medical office — an office which served as the team’s conference room, breakfast area, and idea hub. Backed by a little programming team in India, the trio (comprising Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, and an SEO pro ) discussed ideas on how best to execute a deceptively simple concept. Simple email advertising. Many of the thoughts were beyond the means of the fledgling business, but that did not stop Keller from planning ahead.
The first Clients of Benchmark Email were small businesses located in near proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his staff sold them on the usage of email advertising, while working hard to make a simple user interface which would be simple to operate. All the while, the business uses such innovative ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to user needs. They also made certain from the beginning that anyone who needed help would have quick access to outstanding customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to rise and advantagesper. Its current focus. Providing worldwide email advertising solutions to small and midsize businesses while continuing to honor a commitment to assist children in need. This doesn’t mean that Benchmark is a little-guys-only company, however; it has adhered to its core principle of adaptability and functions large organizations like UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente through its High Volume Enterprise plans.
Today, Benchmark serves up of 73,000 users from across the globe, but the company hasn’t forgotten its roots. Benchmark still keeps good relationships with small, locally-based businesses. In reality, the organization supplies a full page of testimonials from local users of the program. You can read more about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While the Majority of the features Benchmark provides Are on par with the rest of the industry, among the standout features of this ESP is the fact that most of its attributes come standard with each account — such as the free ones. Here are some of Benchmark’s most notable offerings.
· Countless Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark provides all customers access to the library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 categories, some of which are tailored to particular industries such as education, entertainment, and retail. There’s also a class for societal media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Possibly the best-known benefit of Benchmark is its support for video mails. The company explains the advantages of this attribute here.
· Online Surveys. You can create professional-looking online polls using one of Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your survey on your site or build it directly into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All Benchmark’s High Volume plans come with a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability rates. Users on other plans have the choice of paying for this service ($30/month) to increase their particular delivery stats. Read more about the benefits of dedicated servers here.
· Email Delivery Management. Benchmark’s email delivery management program is about getting customers’ emails into inboxes. The business is a part of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and operates with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and consulting support. The company also communicates with ISPs on its customers’ behalf. Bench Email
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile apps make it possible for customers having an Apple device to access several functions on the road. They can get and include contacts, browse reports, send videos via integration with a YouTube accounts, and even design and send quick email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. This is quite a little more than many other businesses offer on their mobile programs, which makes them considerably more functional.
· Photo Editing. If the photos you intend to utilize on your email campaign aren’t perfectly sized or want some colour adjustment, you may use Benchmark’s integrated photo editor. This is a fairly handy feature if you do not have photoshop available.
· Code Editor. If you’ve got the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark offers this ultra-customization choice with which you may construct your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Every Benchmark client has the power to design up to eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a string or occasion lead-up, or designed as yearly messages like anniversary or birthday mails.
· Sign-Up Types . The only way to be prosperous in email advertising is by way of growing your list, and Benchmark actually promotes doing so via sign-up forms. The company bases its Free For Life account entirely around website and Facebook sign-ups and supplies an easy-to-use instrument to create custom templates for each medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program is different and every internet browser includes a signature style, making sure your emails look great across the board is crucial. You can use Inbox Checker to look at the way that your email displays in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Using the full program (which checks everything from AOL to Yahoo, Explorer into Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on provider, available for $14 per 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers can create newsletters from their blogs mechanically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any site which manages an RSS-feed. Users simply have to establish a template and campaign within Benchmark once.
· API Integration. An API (Application Program Interface) allows different software programs to communicate with one another with no formal plug-in connection. Benchmark’s API Integration feature allows users using XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET skills to retrieve data from other apps that use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In brief, this allows them to play three purposes. Manage contact lists, manage campaigns and campaign sending, and check statistics. The business explains this function in more detail here.
· Advanced Metrics. Benchmark provides both Listing Segmentation and AB Split Testing.
· Multiple-Language Interface. Benchmark is available in seven languages. Chinese, English, German, Japanese, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish.
Benefits Of Use
Signing up for a Benchmark account is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, contact number, and business name, you need to confirm your email address. This is a five-minute process for me. Upon logging into my new account (using the free plan) I was greeted by an appealing UI that gave me a very clear path on the best way best to make my first email campaign. Good beginning!
Email Campaign Creation
On its own dashboard, Benchmark offers users five chief choices. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To create a new effort, go to the Emails section, then hit the big blue”Create New Email” button in the top right-hand corner. Bench Email
From there, you have to decide If You Would like an RSS Or classic email message. It is possible to use Benchmark’s drag-and-drop editor, or go for more customization with the built-in code editor. If you are somebody who codes their own email, then my hat is off to you, but I am not gifted that way, so I moved with the drag-and-drop option.
I had been prompted to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much tracking I wanted on the message, in addition to when I wanted an automated tweet when the campaign went out. The next task was to choose which contacts I wished to receive the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to begin constructing the email . If you would like to, you are able to construct your own email designs employing a very intuitive editor. On the flip side, you can modify one of Benchmark’s templates, that can be great, and better than I was able to do in my.
Preventing the Email Campaign
If you are just Starting out, you can certainly do as I did and manually input contacts one at a time. However, for those who already have a list, there are numerous ways to import it. You can upload a CSV, xls, or txt file directly from your personal computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste large lists of contacts to a text form. When you make your Benchmark lists, then they will appear on your dash, along with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of this email is rather simple. Once you’ve completed all your tweaks, you can either save the email as a draft, send it instantly, or schedule a date and time for delivery. If you want to check all is well before unleashing your email about the planet, it is possible to send it to yourself to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I chose to schedule my email for shipping to see how timely the automatic system would actually be. I scheduled my email for 2.45 and received it in 2.50, so while the timing wasn’t exactly ideal, it was likely within tolerance levels for many users. If you are among the more infrequent users who need on-the-minute email sending, then you might have to appear elsewhere. More worryingly, my email didn’t go to my primary inbox but was automatically sorted in my”promotions” folder. Definitely not perfect.
Mail Campaign Reporting
The first thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I would read about in a few reviews. They’re really, really quickly. I mean lightning fast. Opens enroll from the Benchmark system almost immediately. I’ve worked with several other programs where these reports take hours or even days to appear.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of data about each effort. The possibly most important statistic, the open speed, seems in both pie chart and numerical type. In addition, Benchmark provides users with stats such as clicks, forward, bounces, unsubscribes, and abuse. Each stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses related to a given action. Users can export this data for further analysis via a csv or xls file. There is also a social networking place which reports shares through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as well as a map which breaks down, by state, that opens your emails. Bench Email
Though all of the information is great and Necessary, it isn’t enough to sustain higher level marketers who need more information such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Although Google Analytics provides a lot of this information with appropriate integration, there might come a time when serious marketers need more info than Benchmark provides. Whether a small business will reach that point varies, naturally, based on the business.
Specific Size Of Company
Benchmark made its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everyone from the smallest kitchen-table startup to large email marketers. However, the organization’s main focus is on small to medium businesses, particularly those just beginning in email marketing. This is especially reflected in the reality that clients subscribing to the medium plans get unlimited emails, while larger plans have constraints.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers approximately 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you do not see the integration you need, there’s still hope. You’re able to use the API or ask a integration by sending an email to [email protected]
· Benchmark Occasions — Benchmark Occasions is event marketing software designed to integrate fully with Benchmark Email. Launched in 2012, this app allows users to make and customize events, promote and market tickets, and track the success of their events via their Benchmark Email account. A number of subscriptions are available, including a free alternative.
· Salesforce.com — This integration allows users to import contacts into Benchmark and use Benchmark’s email system to keep Salesforce customers engaged. Read our review of Salesforce here.
· Twitter — Benchmark Mail Lite is a WordPress plug-in which permits users to easily build an email audience through their readers. The plug-in can automatically produce email variations of blog posts and allows users to connect up to five Benchmark accounts.
· Highrise — Merges Highrise contacts using a Benchmark listing. Read our overview of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plug-in allows you to source images for your Benchmark emails from locations throughout the net. Benchmark Power captures pictures you locate and immediately uploads them to your Benchmark accounts for future usage.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts may link Flickr for their Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You can link a Shopify account to Benchmark and automatically add Shopify customers to Benchmark lists. You may even add contributors to various lists based on which products they purchased. Read our overview of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add any of their PayPal clients to their own Benchmark email lists bylinking the accounts. Read our review of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Learn more about this simple list-making program and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present site and site builder offers an integration with Benchmark. Use it to send mails of your blog articles and also use the analytics to see how your subscribers react to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain access to Zapier’s huge integration library here. Bench Email
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the key link between social media and email marketing, it is important to look at the social media features contained in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One section of Benchmark’s enormous email template listing consists of societal media-specific templates which directly promote your company’s participation in social networking forums such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides a simple function which permits you to add a Facebook”Just Like” button into your emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Features” above) for both websites and Facebook enthusiast pages, to help you convert followers into subscribers.
· Social Links within Mail — Once you connect your Benchmark account with your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn account, you can add switches to every email that will direct your subscribers to each of your social networking pages.
The Business also fully Complies with all the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks regarding the selection of personal data from citizens of those countries. When clients provide credit card amounts to Benchmark, the business uses secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The entire system is encrypted to ensure the security of customers’ personal information.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All legitimate ESPs, Benchmark takes spam seriously and summarizes a clear zero-tolerance coverage for any of their users hoping to engage in spam actions. The company is fully in compliance with all the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark additionally takes several measures to maintain its standing as a spam-free provider, among them membership in the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The company uses the app SpamAssassin to filter messages delivered through its host.
To stop users from Unknowingly sending spam-like substances, Benchmark supplies a spam check feature which looks for words widely utilized in spam messages. It scores every email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are delegated to content that is very likely to be blocked. In case of a high score, the program suggests”less spammy” choices. Individualized IP addresses also assist large-volume senders reduce their spam amounts.
Customer Support and Service
Benchmark Offers its users a lot of support resources. Customer support is generally responsive, with minimal waiting times. The website provides good learning resources, but can be opaque occasionally. Crucial information can be buried and hard to locate, especially if you don’t know exactly what you’re searching for, particularly when it comes to minute particulars about plans. As an example. The Free For Life plan comprises Benchmark branding on every email, however you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life webpage, not even in the fine print. Nor are you going to see it mentioned when you sign up. The only place it’s mentioned is at the FAQ, here.
Here are some of those resources Benchmark offers. Bench Email
· Live Support and Email — Benchmark provides live one-on-one support through these means.
· Email Service. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or through the company’s contact form here. Available 24 hours Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday.
· Telephone Support. You are able to reach Benchmark at 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or even 001-562-252-3789 (all states ). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Available nearly 24 hours per day Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday. Offered in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
· FAQ — Benchmark’s FAQ section is somewhat mislabeled because it’s closer to a QandA-format knowledge base than a normal FAQ. There are over 900 entries, sorted into 18 topics ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users may perform a keyword search of any subject (or sub-topic) or of the FAQ as a whole. 1 caveat. With such a comprehensive knowledge base, it’s pretty much inevitable that some entries will be out of date. A few of the QandAs provide advice that’s wholly inaccurate, so in some cases, you may want to contact assistance to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark supplies about two dozen movie tutorials that take users step by step through the features of the program. The company also supplies a webinar known as”Benchmark Mail Crash Course.” You can view it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or see the recorded version at any moment. You can even ask for a particular webinar on quite a few other subjects. Live webinars include the chance to ask questions during the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — There are more in-depth details on email marketing generally, as well as the Benchmark program specifically, in the Manuals Section. These downloadable documents also cover industry-specific issues. Articles, similar to sites, offer users advice beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more readable chunks than the manuals provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Requirements — This can be a particularly helpful tool for all those brand new to email marketing who feel consumed by all of the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the most popular email marketing conditions from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Website and Newsletter — For current info about email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, as well as its extremely active blog. All subscribers automatically gain access to current newsletters, and Benchmark also offers an archive of newsletter articles from November 2007-October 2012.
· Benchmark Community — Benchmark users may post their latest newsletters on message boards at the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to talk about newsletter production approaches, vote for their favourite newsletters, and gain inspiration from other Benchmark users.
Web-Based Or Locally-Installed
Benchmark is entirely web-based and does not Require any setup on your computer.
Positive Reviews and Reviews
Benchmark Has a four-out-of-five star score on G2 Crowd, with a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Bench Email
Some common points of praise.
· Top Notch Service . This is maybe the most typical monitoring concerning Benchmark, and some thing I discovered for myself too. People today are inclined to find support prompt and beneficial, and some say it is actually the component that distinguishes Benchmark from its competitors. The company also receives praise for its blog posts and videos.
· Feature Selection Across All Plans. Some customers praise the addition of features including AB analyzing and surveys from most plans; many firms charge extra for such features or just include them in their pricier programs.
· Benefits of Use. Users have a tendency to locate Benchmark’s interface incredibly intuitive and user-friendly. The program gathers compliments from a broad assortment of demographics, from first-time ESP users to those who have tried many different programs before settling Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Consumers were impressed with the mobile-friendly email layout of Benchmark’s templates. Since more and more people access their email from mobile devices, this is an increasingly significant aspect to consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was not able to find many people who disliked Their own Benchmark experience. However, I managed to find a couple of complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently a few users experienced a problem with Benchmark in which their emails were sent hours when they were first scheduled. 1 customer theorized the issue might arise in long lists of recipients. Not all customers of Benchmark will possess time-sensitive sending needs, but others will. If you want your mails to go out precisely whenever your program dictates, you might have to consider this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I watched several consumer reviews that commented the social media integrations in Benchmark are not up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were concerned that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam email, leading recipients to mark them as spam rather than studying the contents. Since the entire point of an ESP is to prevent this from happening, this might be a problem. On the flip side, I never felt this way while searching through the template list, so it may not be the most legitimate of complaints.
Benchmark Offers a enormous variety of pricing plans, including a totally free plan and a huge scale of paid programs that may service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free plans do not require charge Cards, which is always refreshing. The only catch. There will be a little Benchmark logo in the bottom of every email you send out. Obviously, you may always opt to upgrade to a paid program if you don’t need the Benchmark branding. The free program allows you to send up to 14000 mails to around 2000 subscribers and provides you access to most but not all Benchmark’s features list. Notable absences to the attributes list for free accounts comprise email automation and sub-accounts (enabling many users to access one Benchmark account).
Paid Strategies. Bench Email
Users with little contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the choice of paying for their email marketing based on the number of emails that they send every month.
o Medium Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 per month
o Large Plans. 55,000-100,000 subscribers, $285.99-$494.99 per month
o Extra Large Strategies. 125,000-1,000,000 subscribers, $659.99-$4,273.99 a month
o Enormous Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 a month
Benchmark accepts all Major charge cards and also allows you to pay through PayPal. They also offer you a 25% reduction for nonprofits and teachers.
Benchmark is a good program. It’s Simple to Use, Open to innovation, and competitively priced. Its free options may very well be the best in the business for anybody who only wants to dip into email marketing (particularly small, local businesses). For that matter, any Benchmark strategy can work nicely for a little company which perspectives email as a little element of its marketing and has no desire to operate past the basics just yet.
If you are a little or even medium-sized Business looking for a simple email advertising program with a multitude of great features, Benchmark is an exceptional choice. Even though there might come a time when you outgrow the program, it provides a lot for the price, provides exceptional support, and the company appears to be sensitive to the requirements of its customers. You can’t ask for more.