Summary Benchmark Email Crm
For many an evening in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a tiny medical office — an office that served as the group’s conference room, breakfast area, and idea heart. Backed by a little programming group in India, the trio (consisting of Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, and an search engine optimization pro ) discussed ideas for how to implement a deceptively straightforward concept. Simple email marketing. Many of their ideas were beyond the means of this fledgling company, but that did not stop Keller from moving ahead.
The first Clients of Benchmark Mail were small companies located in near proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his staff personally sold them on the usage of email marketing, while working hard to create a simple user interface which would be simple to operate. All the time, the company uses such innovative ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to consumer needs. They also made certain from the outset that anyone who needed help would have quick access to excellent customer care.
Benchmark Has continued to rise and advantagesper. Its current focus. Providing global email marketing services to small and medium-sized companies while continuing to honor a commitment to help kids in need. This doesn’t indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only company, however; it has stuck to its core principle of adaptability and functions large organizations such as UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente through its High Volume Enterprise plans.
Today, Benchmark serves up of 73,000 users from throughout the globe, however, the company has not forgotten its roots. Benchmark still keeps good relationships with small, locally-based businesses. In fact, the company supplies a full page of testimonials from local users of this app. You can read more about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While most of the features Benchmark supplies Are on par with the rest of the business, among the standout features of the ESP is the simple fact that nearly all its features come standard with each account — such as the free ones. Here are a few of Benchmark’s most notable offerings.
· Countless Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark offers all customers access to its library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 categories, some of which are tailored to particular industries such as education, entertainment, and retailstores. There’s also a category for societal media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Perhaps the best-known advantage of Benchmark is its support for video mails. The company explains the advantages of this feature here.
· Online Surveys. You’ll be able to create professional-looking online surveys using one of Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your poll on your website or construct it directly into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All of Benchmark’s High Volume plans have a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability prices. Users on other programs have the option of paying for this service ($30/month) to boost their particular delivery stats. Read more about the benefits of dedicated servers .
· Email Delivery Management. Benchmark’s email shipping management program is about getting clients’ mails into inboxes. The company is a member of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and operates with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and delivery support. The company also communicates with ISPs on its customers’ behalf. Benchmark Email Crm
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile programs make it possible for customers having an Apple device to get several functions on the road. They can get and add contacts, browse reports, send videos via integration with a YouTube account, and even design and send quick email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. This is quite a bit more than a number of other businesses offer in their mobile apps, which makes them much more operational.
· Photo Editing. If the pictures you plan to use in your email campaign aren’t perfectly sized or want some colour adjustment, you may use Benchmark’s integrated photo editor. This is a pretty handy feature if you do not have photoshop available.
· Code Editor. In case you’ve got the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark provides this ultra-customization choice with which you may construct your emails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Every Benchmark client has the ability to design around eight custom autoresponder messages. These can be scheduled as a series or event lead-up, or designed as yearly messages such as birthday or anniversary mails.
· Sign-Up Types . The only way to be prosperous in email advertising is through growing your own list, and Benchmark really promotes doing this through sign-up forms. The business bases its Free For Life account entirely around site and Facebook sign-ups and supplies an easy-to-use tool to create custom templates for every medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program differs and each internet browser has a signature style, making certain that your emails look great across the board is crucial. It is possible to use Inbox Checker to look at the way your email screens in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Employing the entire program (which assesses everything out of AOL to Yahoo, Explorer to Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on service, available for $14 per 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers can create newsletters out of their blogs automatically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any blog which handles an RSS-feed. Users only need to set up a template and campaign within Benchmark once.
· API Integration. An API (Application Program Interface) enables different software programs to communicate with one another without a formal plug-in link. Benchmark’s API Integration feature allows users with XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET abilities to retrieve data from some other apps that use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In a nutshell, this permits them to perform three purposes. Manage contact lists, handle campaigns and campaign sending, and assess statistics. The company describes this role in more detail .
· Advanced Metrics. Benchmark offers both Listing Segmentation and AB Split Testing.
· Multiple-Language Interface. Benchmark is offered in seven languages. Chinese, English, German, Japanese, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish.
Benefits Of Use
Enrolling in a Benchmark accounts is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, contact number, and business name, you need to validate your email address. This is a five-minute process for me. Upon logging into my new account (with the free plan) I was greeted by an attractive UI that gave me a clear path on the best way best to create my first email campaign. Great start!
Email Campaign Creation
On its dashboard, Benchmark provides users five main options. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To create a new campaign, go to the Emails section, then hit on the big blue”Create New Mail” button at the top right-hand corner. Benchmark Email Crm
From there, you have to decide If You Would like an RSS Or traditional 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’re someone who codes their own email, then my hat is off to you, but I am not gifted that way, so I went with the drag-and-drop alternative.
I was motivated to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much observation I desired on the message, in addition to if I wanted an automatic tweet once the effort went out. The next task was to select which contacts I wanted to receive the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to begin building the email itself. If you want to, you are able to assemble your own email designs employing an extremely intuitive editor. On the other hand, you can alter 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 do as I did and manually enter contacts at a time. However, for people who already have a list, there are numerous ways to import it. You can upload a CSV, xls, or txt file right from your personal computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste huge lists of contacts into a text form. When you create your Benchmark lists, they’ll appear on your dash, along with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of the email is rather simple. When you’ve completed all your tweaks, you can save email as a draft, send it immediately, or schedule a date and time for delivery. If you want to verify all is well before distributing your email on the world, you can send it to yourself to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I chose to schedule my email for delivery to see how timely the automated system would actually be. I advised my email for 2.45 and obtained it in 2.50, therefore while the timing wasn’t exactly perfect, it was probably within tolerance levels for most users. If you’re one of the more infrequent users who demand on-the-minute email sending, then you may need to appear elsewhere. More worryingly, my email didn’t go to my main inbox but was automatically sorted into my”promotions” folder. Definitely not ideal.
Mail Campaign Reporting
First thing I Discovered about Benchmark email reports was something I’d read in a couple of reviews. They are really, really fast. I mean lightning fast. Opens register from the Benchmark system virtually immediately. I have worked with several other programs where these reports take hours or even days to look.
Benchmark provides users with several key Pieces of information about every effort. The arguably most important statistic, the open speed, appears in both pie graph and numerical form. In addition, Benchmark supplies users with stats for clicks, forwards, bounces, unsubscribes, and abuse. Every stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses associated with a given action. Users may export this information for additional analysis by means of a csv or xls file. There’s also a social media area which reports shares through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as well as a map that breaks down, by state, that opens your emails. Benchmark Email Crm
Though all of the information Is Excellent and Necessary, it is not sufficient to sustain increased level marketers who need more information such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a whole lot of that information with proper integration, there might come a time when serious entrepreneurs need more information than Benchmark provides. Whether or not a small company will reach that point varies, naturally, dependent on the company.
Specific Size Of Company
Benchmark designed its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the objective of serving everybody from the smallest kitchen-table startup to big email marketers. However, the company’s key focus is on small to medium companies, especially those just starting out in email marketing. This is especially reflected in the reality that clients subscribing to the medium plans get unlimited mails, while bigger plans have limitations.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers roughly 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you don’t observe the integration you want, there’s still hope. You’re able to use the API or request a integration by sending an email to [email protected]
· Benchmark Occasions — Benchmark Occasions is event marketing applications designed to integrate fully with Benchmark Email. Launched in 2012, this program permits users to make and customize events, promote and market tickets, and track the success of the events through their Benchmark Email accounts. A variety of programs are available, including a free alternative.
· Salesforce.com — This integration enables users to import contacts into Benchmark and use Benchmark’s email system to maintain Salesforce customers engaged. Read our review of Salesforce here.
· WordPress — Benchmark Email Lite is a WordPress plug-in which permits users to easily build an email viewer through their readers. The plug-in can automatically create email versions of blog articles 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 pictures for your Benchmark mails from places across the net. Benchmark Power captures images you find and immediately uploads them to your Benchmark account for future usage.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts may link Flickr for their own Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You can link a Shopify accounts to Benchmark and mechanically add Shopify customers to Benchmark lists. You can even add subscribers to various lists based on which products they purchased. Read our overview of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users can add some of the PayPal customers to their Benchmark email lists bylinking the account. Read our overview of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Learn more about this simple list-making app and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present site and website builder provides an integration with Benchmark. Use it to send mails of your blog posts and also use the analytics to see how your readers respond to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain access to Zapier’s huge integration library here. Benchmark Email Crm
Social Media Integrations
Because Of the key connection between social networking and email advertising, it’s very important to check out the social networking features contained in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One section of Benchmark’s massive email template listing is made of social media-specific templates that directly promote your company’s participation in social networking forums like facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark offers a very simple function which permits you to add a Facebook”Like” button into your own emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Features” above) for both sites and Facebook enthusiast pages, to help you convert followers into subscribers.
· Social Links within Email — Once you link your Benchmark account with your Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn accounts, you can add switches to each email which will direct your readers 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 customers provide credit card amounts to Benchmark, the company utilizes 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 valid ESPs, Benchmark takes spam seriously and summarizes a clear zero-tolerance policy for any of the users trying to take part in spam actions. The company is entirely in compliance with all the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark additionally takes several measures to preserve its reputation as a spam-free supplier, one of them membership in the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The business uses the program SpamAssassin to filter messages delivered through its server.
To prevent users from Unknowingly sending spam-like materials, Benchmark provides a spam test feature which looks for words commonly used in spam messages. It scores every email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are assigned 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 help large-volume senders decrease their spam numbers.
Customer Support and Service
Benchmark Offers its customers a lot of support resources. Customer service is generally responsive, with minimal waiting times. The site offers good learning resources, but may be opaque at times. Crucial information is often buried and difficult to locate, particularly in the event that you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, especially when it comes to minute details about plans. As an example. That the Free For Life plan comprises Benchmark branding on every email, however you won’t see that mentioned on the Free For Life page, not even in the fine print. Nor are you going to see it said when you register. The only place it’s mentioned is at the FAQ, here.
Here are some of those resources Benchmark offers. Benchmark Email Crm
· Live Email and Support — Benchmark provides live one-on-one aid through these means.
· Email Service. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or via the organization’s contact form . Available 24 hours Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday.
· Phone Support. You are able to reach Benchmark at 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or even 001-562-252-3789 (all countries). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Available nearly 24 hours daily Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday. Founded 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. You will find more than 900 entries, sorted into 18 topics ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users may execute a key word search of any topic (or sub-topic) or of the FAQ as a whole. 1 caveat. With such an extensive knowledge base, it’s pretty much inevitable that some entries are going to be out of date. Some of the QandAs provide advice which is wholly incorrect, so in some cases, you might need to contact assistance to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark supplies about two dozen video tutorials that take users step by step through the features of the program. The business also supplies a webinar known as”Benchmark Mail Crash Course.” You can see it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or watch the recorded version at any time. You can even ask for a particular webinar on quite a few other topics. Live webinars include the chance to ask questions throughout the demonstration.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — There are more in-depth information on email marketing generally, as well as the Benchmark program specifically, in the Manuals Section. These downloadable documents also cover industry-specific troubles. Articles, very similar to sites, offer users advice beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more digestible chunks compared to the guides provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Requirements — This is a particularly valuable tool for all those new to email marketing who feel consumed by all the jargon. Benchmark gives a glossarywith 50 of the most popular email marketing terms from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Website and Newsletter — For current information about email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, in addition to its extremely active blog. All readers automatically gain access to present newsletters, and Benchmark also offers an archive of newsletter posts from November 2007-October 2012.
· Benchmark Community — Benchmark users may post their newest newsletters on message boards in the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to talk about newsletter production strategies, vote for their favorite newsletters, and gain inspiration from additional Benchmark users.
Web-Based Or Locally-Installed
Benchmark is entirely web-based and does not Require any setup on your computer.
Favorable Reviews and Testimonials
Benchmark Has a four-out-of-five star score on G2 Crowd, using a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Benchmark Email Crm
Some common points of praise.
· Top Notch Support. This is perhaps the most common observation concerning Benchmark, and some thing I noticed for myself too. People are inclined to find support prompt and beneficial, and a few say it’s actually the element that distinguishes Benchmark from its rivals. The company also receives praise for its blog posts and videos.
· Characteristic Selection Across All Aims . Some customers praise the addition of attributes like AB analyzing and surveys from all programs; many companies charge extra for these attributes or just include them into their pricier programs.
· Ease of Use. Users have a tendency to find Benchmark’s interface incredibly user-friendly and intuitive. The program gathers praise from a wide range of demographics, from first time ESP consumers to those who have tried a variety of programs before settling on Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Consumers were impressed with all the mobile-friendly email layout of Benchmark’s templates. Since more and more people access their email from mobile devices, this is an increasingly important aspect to consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was Unable to find many people who loathed Their own Benchmark experience. However, I was able to discover a few complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently some users experienced an issue with Benchmark in which their mails were sent hours when they were first scheduled. 1 customer theorized that the issue might arise from lengthy lists of recipients. Not all clients of Benchmark will possess time-sensitive sending demands, but other people will. Should you need your mails to go out exactly when your schedule dictates, you might need to take into account this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I saw several user reviews that commented the social networking integrations in Benchmark are not up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users have been concerned that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam mail, leading recipients to mark them as junk rather than studying the contents. Since the entire point of an ESP would be to stop this from happening, this may be an issue. On the flip side, I never felt this way while searching through the template list, therefore it might not be the most valid of complaints.
Benchmark Offers a huge number of pricing strategies, including a free plan and a massive array of paid plans which may service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free plans do not require credit Cards, which is always refreshing. The only grab. There’ll be a little Benchmark emblem at the bottom of every email you send out. Of course, you may always opt to upgrade to a paid program if you don’t need the Benchmark branding. The free plan permits you to send up to 14000 mails to around 2000 subscribers and gives you access to most but not all Benchmark’s features record. Notable absences into the features list for free accounts include email automation and sub-accounts (enabling multiple users to access one Benchmark account).
Paid Strategies. Benchmark Email Crm
Users with small contacts lists and limited Monthly messages have the option of paying to get their email marketing based on the number of emails that they send each month.
o Medium Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 a 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 per month
o Massive Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 per month
Benchmark accepts all Major credit cards and also lets you pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% reduction for nonprofits and educators.
Benchmark is a solid program. It’s easy to use, Open to invention, and competitively priced. Its free options may just be the very best in the business for anybody who only wants to dive into email marketing (especially small, neighborhood companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work nicely for a small business which views email as a little element of its advertising and has no desire to work past the basics just yet.
If you are a small or maybe medium-sized Company trying to find a easy email advertising program using a host of amazing features, Benchmark is an excellent choice. Though there might come a time when you launch the app, it supplies a lot for the money, provides excellent service, and the business appears to be sensitive to the needs of its customers. You can’t ask for more.