Summary Email Marketing Software Download
For many a day in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a tiny medical office — an office which served as the group’s conference room, breakfast area, and idea hub. Backed by a small programming team in India, the trio (consisting of Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, along with an SEO pro ) discussed ideas for how to execute a deceptively straightforward idea. Simple email marketing. Many of their thoughts were beyond the resources of the fledgling company, but that didn’t 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 team personally sold them on the use of email marketing, while working hard to create a simple user interface that would be easy to operate. All the while, the business uses such novel ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to user requirements. They also made certain from the outset that anyone who needed help would have rapid access to excellent customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to grow and advantagesper. Its present focus. Providing worldwide email advertising solutions to small and midsize companies while continuing to honor a commitment to assist kids in need. This doesn’t indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only service, however; it has adhered to its core principle of adaptability and serves large organizations like UNICEF and Kaiser-Permanente via its High Volume Business plans.
Today, Benchmark serves upwards of 73,000 users from across the globe, but the company hasn’t forgotten its origins. Benchmark still maintains good relationships with little, locally-based businesses. In fact, the company offers a complete page of testimonials from local users of the app. You can read about Benchmark’s background and development here.
While the Majority of the features Benchmark provides Are on par with the rest of the business, among the standout characteristics of the ESP is the fact that nearly all its features come standard with each accounts — including the free ones. Below are some of Benchmark’s most noteworthy offerings.
· Hundreds of Industry-Specific, Themed Templates. Benchmark offers all users access to the library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 classes, some of which are tailored to specific industries such as education, entertainment, and retail. There’s also a class for social media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Perhaps the best-known advantage of Benchmark is its support for video emails. The business describes the benefits of this attribute 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 site or construct it directly into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All of Benchmark’s High Volume plans come with a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability prices. Users on other programs have the choice of paying for this service ($30/month) to increase their particular delivery stats. Read more about the advantages of dedicated servers here.
· Email Delivery Direction . Benchmark’s email shipping management program is about getting clients’ mails into inboxes. The company is a part of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and operates with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and consulting service. The business also communicates with ISPs on its clients’ behalf. Email Marketing Software Download
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile apps make it possible for customers with an Apple device to access several functions on the road. They can get and add contacts, browse reports, send videos through integration with a YouTube accounts, and even design and send fast email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. This is quite a bit more than a number of other companies offer in their mobile programs, making them much more operational.
· Photo Editing. If the pictures you intend to utilize in your email campaign are not perfectly sized or need some colour adjustment, you can 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 offers this ultra-customization option with which you can build your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Every Benchmark client has the ability to design up to eight custom autoresponder messages. These can be scheduled as a string or occasion lead-up, or designed as yearly messages such as anniversary or birthday mails.
· Sign-Up Types . The only way to become prosperous in email advertising is through growing your list, and Benchmark actually promotes doing so through sign-up forms. The company bases its Free For Life account completely around website and Facebook sign-ups and supplies an easy-to-use tool to create customized templates for every medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program is different and every web browser has a signature fashion, making sure that your emails look great across the board is important. It is possible to use Inbox Checker to have a look at the way that your email displays in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Using the entire program (which assesses everything out of AOL to Yahoo, Explorer into Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on provider, available for $14 each 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers may create newsletters from their sites mechanically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any site which handles an RSS-feed. Users simply need to establish a template and campaign inside 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 abilities to retrieve data from some other programs that use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In brief, this allows them to play three functions. Manage contact lists, manage campaigns and campaign sending, and check data. The company explains this role in more detail here.
· 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
Signing up for a Benchmark accounts is pretty straightforward. After entering your name, email, phone number, and company name, you need to validate your email address. This is a five-minute process for me. Upon logging in to my account (using the free program ) I was greeted by an appealing UI that gave me a very clear path on the best way best to create my first email campaign. Good beginning!
Email Campaign Creation
On its dashboard, Benchmark provides users five chief options. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To make a new effort, go to the Emails segment, then hit the large blue”Create New Email” button at the upper right-hand corner. Email Marketing Software Download
From there, you must decide If You Would like an RSS Or classic email message. It is possible to use Benchmark’s drag-and-drop editor, or move 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 alternative.
I had been motivated to enter a subject line for my Email and setup how much tracking I desired on the message, in addition to if I wanted an automatic tweet once the campaign went out. The following task was to choose which contacts I wished to get the campaign. With that, I was eventually able to begin building the email . If you would like to, you are able to assemble your own email layouts employing a very intuitive editor. On the other hand, you can alter one of Benchmark’s templates, which are great, and much better than I was able to do on my own.
Sending the Email Campaign
If you are just Starting out, you can do as I did and manually input contacts one at a time. However, for people who already have a listing, there are numerous ways to import it. You are able to 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 large lists of contacts to a text type. Once you make your Benchmark lists, then they’ll appear on your dash, along with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of the email is rather simple. Once you have finished all of your tweaks, you may save email as a draft, send it instantly, or schedule a time and date for delivery. If you would like to verify all is well before unleashing your email about the planet, you can send it to yourself to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I chose to schedule my email for delivery to view how timely the automated system would actually be. I scheduled my email for 2.45 and received it in 2.50, so while the timing was not exactly ideal, it was likely within tolerance levels for most users. If you’re one of the more infrequent users who need on-the-minute email sending, you may have to look elsewhere. More worryingly, my email didn’t go to my main inbox but was automatically sorted in my”promotions” folder. Definitely not perfect.
Mail Campaign Reporting
First thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I would read in a couple of reviews. They are really, really fast. I mean lightning fast. Opens enroll from the Benchmark system almost instantaneously. I have worked with several different programs where these reports require hours or even days to look.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of data about every campaign. The arguably most important statistic, the open rate, seems in both pie graph and numerical type. Additionally, Benchmark provides users with stats for clicks, forwards, bounces, unsubscribes, and misuse. Each stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses related to a given activity. Users may export this data for further analysis via a csv or xls file. There’s also a social media place which reports shares through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as well as a map which breaks down, by country, who opens your mails. Email Marketing Software Download
Though all of this information is great and Necessary, it is not enough to sustain increased level marketers that want more info such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Although Google Analytics provides a whole lot of that information with appropriate integration, there might come a time when serious marketers need more information than Benchmark provides. Whether a small company will reach that point varies, naturally, based on the business.
Specific Size Of Company
Benchmark designed its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everyone from the tiniest kitchen-table startup to large email marketers. On the other hand, the company’s main focus is on small to medium companies, particularly those just starting out in email marketing. This is particularly reflected in the reality that clients subscribing to the medium plans get unlimited emails, while bigger plans have limitations.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers approximately 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you don’t see 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 Events — Benchmark Occasions is event marketing software designed to integrate fully with Benchmark Email. Launched in 2012, this program allows users to create and customize events, promote and sell tickets, and monitor the success of the events through their Benchmark Email accounts. A variety of programs are available, such as a free option.
· Salesforce.com — This integration enables users to import contacts into Benchmark and utilize Benchmark’s email system to keep Salesforce customers engaged. Read our review of Salesforce here.
· WordPress — Benchmark Mail Lite is a WordPress plugin which permits users to easily build an email viewer through their subscribers. The plug-in can automatically create email versions of blog posts and allows users to connect up to five Benchmark accounts.
· Highrise — Merges Highrise contacts using a Benchmark listing. Read our review of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plug-in allows you to source images for your Benchmark mails from places throughout the net. Benchmark Power captures pictures you locate and instantly uploads them to your Benchmark account for future use.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts may link Flickr for their own Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You can link a Shopify accounts to Benchmark and automatically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You can even add subscribers to various lists based on what they bought. Read our overview of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users can add some of their PayPal customers to their Benchmark email lists bylinking the account. Read our overview of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Know more about this simple list-making app and download it here.
· WordPress — The ever-present site and site builder offers an integration with Benchmark. Use it to send emails of your blog posts and also use the analytics to observe how your subscribers react to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain entry to Zapier’s huge integration library here. Email Marketing Software Download
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the key link between social media and email advertising, it is important to look at the social networking features contained in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One section of Benchmark’s massive email template list is made of social media-specific templates that directly promote your company’s participation in social media forums like facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark offers a simple function which allows you to add a Facebook”Just Like” button into your own emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark provides easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Features” above) for both websites and Facebook enthusiast pages, so you can convert followers to readers.
· Social Links within Mail — After you connect your Benchmark account together with your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn account, you can add buttons to each email that will direct your readers to each of your social media pages.
The Business also fully Complies with the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks regarding the collection of personal data from citizens of these countries. When customers provide credit card numbers to Benchmark, the company uses secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the information. The whole system is encrypted to ensure the security of customers’ personal details.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All legitimate ESPs, Benchmark takes spam seriously and outlines a clear zero-tolerance policy for any of their users trying to take part in spam activities. The business is entirely in compliance with the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark additionally takes several steps to preserve its reputation as a spam-free provider, among them membership from the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The business uses the app SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its host.
To stop users from Unknowingly sending spam-like materials, Benchmark provides a spam check feature that looks for words widely used in spam messages. It scores each email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are delegated to content that’s likely to be blocked. In case of a top score, the program suggests”less spammy” alternatives. Individualized IP addresses also assist large-volume senders decrease their spam numbers.
Client Support and Service
Benchmark Offers its users a great deal of support resources. Customer support is usually responsive, with minimal waiting times. The site offers good learning tools, but may be opaque at times. Key information is often buried and difficult to find, especially in the event that you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, particularly in regards to minute particulars about plans. For instance. The Free For Life plan includes Benchmark branding on every email, however you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life page, not even in the fine print. Nor will you see it mentioned when you sign up. The only place it is mentioned is in the FAQ, here.
Here are some of the resources Benchmark offers. Email Marketing Software Download
· Live Support and Email — Benchmark supplies live one-on-one aid through these means.
· Email Support. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or through the company’s contact form . Available 24 hours Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday.
· Phone Support. You can reach Benchmark at 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or 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 limited hours on Saturday. Founded in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
· FAQ — Benchmark’s FAQ section is somewhat mislabeled as it is closer to some QandA-format knowledge foundation than a typical FAQ. There are over 900 entries, sorted into 18 subjects ranging from”Getting Started” to”API.” Users can perform a key word search of any subject (or sub-topic) or of the FAQ as a whole. One caveat. With such an extensive 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 support to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark supplies about two dozen video tutorials which take users step by step through the features of this app. The company also supplies a webinar known as”Benchmark Email 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 special webinar on quite a few other subjects. Live webinars include the chance to ask questions during the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — You can find more in-depth information on email marketing in general, in addition to the Benchmark program specifically, in the Manuals Section. These downloadable files also cover industry-specific troubles. Articles, similar to sites, offer users guidance 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 those new to email marketing who believe absorbed by all of the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the very 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, as well as its extremely active site. All readers automatically gain access to current 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 discuss newsletter production approaches, 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 Reviews
Benchmark Includes a four-out-of-five star rating on G2 Crowd, using a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Email Marketing Software Download
Some common points of praise.
· Top Notch Service . This is maybe the most common monitoring concerning Benchmark, and something I noticed for myself as well. People are inclined to find support prompt and helpful, and a few say it’s actually the component that distinguishes Benchmark from its rivals. The company also receives praise for its blog posts and videos.
· Feature Selection Across All Aims . Some users praise the inclusion of attributes including AB testing and surveys from most programs; many companies charge extra for such features or only include them in their pricier plans.
· Ease of Use. Users tend to locate Benchmark’s interface incredibly intuitive and user-friendly. The program gathers praise from a broad range of demographics, from first time ESP consumers to those who have tried many different programs before settling Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Consumers were impressed with all the mobile-friendly email design of Benchmark’s templates. Since more and more people access their email from mobile devices, this can be an increasingly important factor to consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was not able to find many Men and Women who disliked Their own Benchmark experience. However, I was able to find a couple of complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently a few users experienced a problem with Benchmark where their mails were sent hours when they were scheduled. 1 customer theorized that the issue might arise from lengthy lists of recipients. Not all clients of all Benchmark will possess time-sensitive shipping demands, but other people will. Should you want your emails to go out exactly when your schedule dictates, you may have to take into account this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I watched several consumer testimonials that remarked the social networking integrations in Benchmark are not up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users have been concerned that Benchmark’s templates may feel like spam mail, leading receivers to mark them as spam and not reading the contents. Since the entire point of an ESP is to stop this from occurring, this might be a problem. On the flip side, I never felt this way while searching through the template list, so it might not be the most valid of complaints.
Benchmark Offers a enormous number of pricing strategies, including a totally free plan and a huge array of paid programs that can service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free programs do not require charge Cards, that is always refreshing. The only catch. There will be a small Benchmark logo at the bottom of every email you send out. Of course, you may always choose to upgrade to a paid plan if you don’t want the Benchmark branding. The free plan allows you to send up to 14000 mails to up to 2000 subscribers and gives you access to most but not all Benchmark’s features record. Notable absences into the attributes list for free account comprise email automation and sub-accounts (enabling many users to get one Benchmark accounts ).
Paid Strategies. Email Marketing Software Download
Users with small contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the option of paying to get their email marketing depending on the amount of emails they send each month.
o Medium Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 a month
o Large Strategies. 55,000-100,000 subscribers, $285.99-$494.99 per month
o Extra Large Plans. 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 per month
Benchmark accepts all Major charge 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 alternatives may very well be the very best in the business for anyone who just wants to dip into email advertising (particularly small, local businesses). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work well for a little company which perspectives email as a little aspect of its advertising and does not have any desire to work beyond the principles just yet.
If you are a small or even medium-sized Business trying to find a simple email marketing program using a multitude of great features, Benchmark is an exceptional option. Even though there may come a time when you launch the app, it supplies a great deal for the money, offers excellent service, and the business seems to be sensitive to the needs of its users. You can not ask for more.