Summary Email Metrics Benchmarks
For many a day in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a tiny medical office — an office which functioned as the team’s conference room, lunch room, and thought heart. Backed by a little programming group in India, the trio (consisting of Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, along with an search engine optimization expert) discussed ideas for how to implement a deceptively simple idea. Simple email marketing. Many of the thoughts were beyond the resources of this fledgling company, but that didn’t stop Keller from planning ahead.
The first Customers 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 marketing, while working hard to create a simple user interface that would be simple to operate. All the time, the company uses such innovative ideas as customizable templates and software which adapted to user needs. They also made sure from the outset that anybody who needed help would have rapid access to excellent customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to grow and advantagesper. Its present focus. Providing global email advertising services to small and midsize companies while continuing to honor a commitment to assist kids in need. This does not indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only company, however; it’s stuck to its core principle of adaptability and functions big 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 roots. Benchmark still maintains good relationships with little, locally-based businesses. In reality, the organization supplies a complete page of testimonials from local users of the 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 industry, one of the standout features of the ESP is the fact that nearly all its attributes come standard with every single accounts — such as the free ones. Here are a few of Benchmark’s most notable offerings.
· Countless 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 is also a category for social media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Possibly the best-known advantage of Benchmark is its support for video emails. The company describes the benefits of this attribute here.
· Online Surveys. You can create professional-looking online surveys using one of Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your survey on your site or construct it directly into an email.
· Dedicated Email Server. All Benchmark’s High Volume programs come with a dedicated IP address to help increase deliverability rates. Users on other plans have the option of paying for this service ($30/month) to increase their particular delivery stats. Read more about the benefits of dedicated servers .
· Email Delivery Management. Benchmark’s email delivery management program is all about getting clients’ mails into inboxes. The company is a member of the Email Sender and Provider Coalition and works with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and consulting service. The business also communicates with ISPs on its clients’ behalf. Email Metrics Benchmarks
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile apps make it possible for customers having an Apple device to get several functions on the road. They can access and include contacts, read reportsand send videos via integration with a YouTube account, and even layout and send quick email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. This is quite a little more than many other businesses offer in 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 need some colour adjustment, you may use Benchmark’s integrated photo editor. This is a pretty handy feature if you do not have photoshop accessible.
· Code Editor. In case you have 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 customer has the ability to style up to eight custom autoresponder messages. These could be scheduled as a series or event lead-up, or made as yearly messages like birthday or anniversary emails.
· Sign-Up Types . The only way to become successful in email advertising is by way of growing your list, and Benchmark really promotes doing this via sign-up forms. The company bases its Free For Life account completely around website and Facebook sign-ups and provides an easy-to-use tool to create custom templates for each medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program differs and each web browser has a signature style, making certain your emails look great across the board is crucial. It is possible to use Inbox Checker to look at the way that your email screens in Gmail using Explorer and Outlook 3. Using the full app (which checks everything out of AOL to Yahoo, Explorer to 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 attribute, which works with any site which manages an RSS-feed. Users only have to establish a template and campaign inside Benchmark once.
· API Integration. An API (Application Program Interface) enables different software programs to communicate with one another without a formal plug-in connection. Benchmark’s API Integration feature allows users using XML-RPC, HTTP POST, or HTTP GET abilities to recover data from other apps which use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In brief, this allows them to perform three functions. Manage contact lists, handle campaigns and campaign sending, and assess data. The business describes this function 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.
Ease Of Use
Signing up for a Benchmark account is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, phone number, and business name, you have to validate your email address. This is a five-minute process for me. Upon logging into my account (using the free program ) I was greeted by an appealing UI that gave me a very clear direction on the best way to make my first email campaign. Great start!
Email Campaign Creation
On its own dashboard, Benchmark provides users five chief options. Emails, Automations, Contacts, Surveys, and Reports. To create a new effort, go to the Emails section, then hit the big blue”Create New Mail” button at the upper right-hand corner. Email Metrics Benchmarks
From there, you have to decide if you want an RSS Or traditional email message. You can use Benchmark’s drag-and-drop editor, or go for more customization using the built-in code editor. If you are someone who codes their own email, then my hat is off to you, but I am not personally gifted that way, so I went with the drag-and-drop option.
I was motivated to enter a subject line for my Email and set up how much observation I wanted on the message, as well as if I wanted an automatic tweet once the effort went out. The following task was to select which contacts I wished to get the campaign. With that, I was finally able to begin constructing the email itself. If you want to, you can assemble your own email layouts using an extremely intuitive editor. On the other hand, you can modify one of Benchmark’s templates, that are great, and much better than I managed to do in my.
Preventing the Email Campaign
If you are just Starting out, you can do as I did and manually input contacts at a time. However, for those who already have a listing, 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 large lists of contacts into a text form. When you make your Benchmark lists, then they’ll appear on your dash, together with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of this email is rather easy. When you’ve finished all of your tweaks, you can save email as a draft, send it immediately, or schedule a date and time for delivery. If you would like to verify all is well before distributing your email on the planet, it is possible to send it to your self to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I chose to schedule my email for shipping to see how timely the automated system would actually be. I advised my email for 2.45 and received it at 2.50, therefore while the timing wasn’t exactly ideal, it was likely within tolerance levels for many users. If you are one of the more rare users who need on-the-minute email sending, then you might have to look elsewhere. More worryingly, my email did not go to my main inbox but was mechanically sorted into my”promotions” folder. Definitely not ideal.
Mail Campaign Reporting
First thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I’d read in a few reviews. They are really, really fast. I mean lightning fast. Opens enroll in the Benchmark system virtually instantaneously. I’ve worked with several other apps where these reports require hours or even days to look.
Benchmark provides users with several key Bits of data about each campaign. The arguably most important statistic, the open speed, seems in both pie graph and numerical form. In addition, Benchmark supplies users with stats for clicks, forward, bounces, unsubscribes, and misuse. Every stat further breaks down to the exact email addresses related to a given action. Users may export this information for additional analysis via a csv or xls file. There’s also a social media place which reports shares via Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, in addition to a map which breaks down, by country, who opens your emails. Email Metrics Benchmarks
Though all of the information is great and Necessary, it is not sufficient to sustain higher level marketers who need more information such as conversions, which hyperlinks were clicked, and revenue analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a lot of that info with appropriate integration, there might come a time when serious entrepreneurs need more info than Benchmark provides. Whether or not a small company will get to that point varies, naturally, dependent on the company.
Particular Size Of Business
Benchmark designed its 3-tiered pricing Structure with the goal of serving everyone from the smallest kitchen-table startup to large email marketers. On the other hand, the organization’s key focus is on small to medium businesses, especially those just beginning in email advertising. This is particularly reflected in the fact that clients subscribing to the medium plans get unlimited emails, while bigger plans have constraints.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers roughly 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you don’t observe the integration you need, there is still hope. You’re able to use the API or ask an 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 monitor the success of their events through their Benchmark Email account. A variety of subscriptions are available, such as a free option.
· Salesforce.com — This integration allows 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 Email Lite is a WordPress plug-in which permits users to quickly build an email viewer via their subscribers. The plugin can automatically produce email versions of blog articles and allows users to connect up to five Benchmark accounts.
· Highrise — Merges Highrise contacts using a Benchmark list. Read our overview of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plugin lets you supply images for your Benchmark emails from places across the net. Benchmark Power captures images you find and instantly uploads them to a Benchmark accounts for future use.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts can link Flickr for their Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You are able to link a Shopify accounts to Benchmark and automatically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You can even add contributors to different lists based on which products they purchased. Read our overview of Shopify here.
· PayPal — Users may add some of the PayPal clients for their own Benchmark email lists bylinking the accounts. Read our overview of Paypal here.
· Easy List — Know more about this simple list-making app and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present site and site builder offers an integration using Benchmark. Use it to send mails of your blog posts and use the analytics to see how your subscribers respond to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain access to Zapier’s huge integration library here. Email Metrics Benchmarks
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the integral connection between social networking and email marketing, it’s very important to look at the social media features included in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One section of Benchmark’s massive email template list consists of social media-specific templates that directly promote your institution’s involvement in social networking forums like facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides a simple function which allows you to bring a Facebook”Just Like” button to your own emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies easy-to-create sign-up forms (see”Characteristics” above) for both sites and Facebook fan pages, to help you convert followers into readers.
· Social Links within Mail — After you connect your Benchmark account together with your Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn accounts, you can add switches to each email that will direct your subscribers to each of your social networking pages.
The company also fully Complies with the U.S.-E.U. and U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Frameworks concerning the selection of personal data from citizens of these nations. When clients provide credit card amounts to Benchmark, the company uses secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the info. The entire platform is encrypted to ensure the security of all customers’ personal details.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All valid ESPs, Benchmark takes junk seriously and summarizes a clear zero-tolerance policy for any of their users hoping to take part in spam activities. The company is entirely in compliance with the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark also takes several measures to maintain its reputation as a spam-free provider, one of them membership in the Email Sender and Provider Coalition. The business uses the program SpamAssassin to filter messages sent through its server.
To stop users from Unknowingly sending spam-like materials, Benchmark supplies a spam test feature which looks for words widely utilized in spam messages. It scores each email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are assigned to content that is very likely to be blocked. In the event of a high score, the program suggests”less spammy” alternatives. Individualized IP addresses also help large-volume senders reduce their spam numbers.
Customer Service and Support
Benchmark Offers its users a great deal of support resources. Customer support is usually responsive, with minimal waiting times. The website provides good learning resources, but may be opaque occasionally. Crucial information can be buried and hard to locate, particularly if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, particularly in regards to minute details about strategies. As an example. That the Free For Life plan includes Benchmark branding on every email, but you won’t find that mentioned on the Free For Life page, not even at the fine print. Nor are you going to see it said when you sign up. The only place it is mentioned is in the FAQ, here.
Here are some of those resources Benchmark offers. Email Metrics Benchmarks
· Live Email and Support — Benchmark supplies live one-on-one support through the following means.
· Email Support. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or via the organization’s contact form . Available 24 hours Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday.
· Telephone Support. You can reach Benchmark at 800-430-4095 (U.S.) or 001-562-252-3789 (all countries). Available weekdays from 6 am to 5 pm PT.
· Chat Support. Available almost 24 hours per day Monday — Friday and limited hours on Saturday. Offered in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
· FAQ — Benchmark’s FAQ section is somewhat mislabeled as it’s closer to some QandA-format knowledge base than a typical 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. One caveat. With such an extensive knowledge base, it is pretty much inevitable that some entries are going to be out of date. A few of the QandAs provide advice that’s wholly incorrect, 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 that take users step by step through the features of the app. The business also supplies a webinar called”Benchmark Mail Crash Course.” You can see it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or see the recorded version at any time. You might also request a particular webinar on quite a few different topics. Live webinars include the chance to ask questions during the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — There are more in-depth information on email marketing generally, in addition to the Benchmark program especially, at the Manuals Section. These downloadable documents also cover industry-specific issues. Articles, similar to blogs, offer users guidance beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more readable chunks than the manuals provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Terms — This is a particularly helpful tool for those new to email marketing who feel absorbed by all of the jargon. Benchmark gives a glossarywith 50 of the very popular email marketing conditions from”above-the-fold” to”whitelists.”
· Website and Newsletter — For current info about email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, as well as its exceptionally active blog. All readers automatically obtain 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 latest newsletters on message boards in the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to discuss newsletter creation strategies, vote for their favorite newsletters, and gain inspiration from other Benchmark users.
Web-Based Or Locally-Installed
Benchmark is completely web-based and does not Require any setup on your PC.
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 Metrics Benchmarks
Some common points of praise.
· Top Notch Service . This is maybe the most typical observation concerning Benchmark, and something I noticed for myself too. People tend to find support prompt and beneficial, and a few say it’s actually the element that distinguishes Benchmark from its competitors. The company also receives praise for its website posts and videos.
· Feature Selection Across All Plans. Some customers praise the inclusion of attributes including AB analyzing and surveys in most programs; many firms charge extra for these features or just include them in their pricier plans.
· Benefits of Use. Users have a tendency to find Benchmark’s interface extremely intuitive and user-friendly. The program gathers compliments from a wide range of demographics, from first-time ESP users to people who have tried a variety of programs before settling Benchmark.
· Mobile Friendly Emails. Users were impressed with all the mobile-friendly email design of Benchmark’s templates. Since an increasing number of people access their email from mobile devices, this can be an increasingly important factor to take into account.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was not able to find many people who disliked Their own Benchmark experience. But, I managed to find a few complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently some users experienced an issue with Benchmark in which their mails were sent hours when they were scheduled. 1 customer theorized the issue might arise in lengthy lists of recipients. Not all customers of Benchmark will have time-sensitive sending demands, but others will. Should you want your mails to go out precisely when your schedule dictates, you may need to take into account this issue.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I saw several user testimonials that commented the social media integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were worried that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam email, leading receivers to mark them as spam and not studying the contents. Since the whole purpose of an ESP is to stop this from occurring, this may be an issue. On the other hand, I never felt this way whilst looking through the template list, so it may not be the most valid of complaints.
Benchmark Offers a enormous variety of pricing plans, including a free plan and a massive scale of paid programs which can service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free plans do not require credit Cards, that is always refreshing. The only grab. There’ll be a little Benchmark logo at the bottom of each email you send out. Obviously, you can always opt to upgrade to a paid program if you don’t need the Benchmark branding. The free program permits you to send up to 14000 mails to around 2000 subscribers and gives you access to most but not all of Benchmark’s features record. Notable absences into the attributes list for free accounts include email automation and sub-accounts (enabling many users to get one Benchmark accounts ).
Paid Strategies. Email Metrics Benchmarks
Users with small contacts lists and restricted Monthly messages have the option of paying for their email marketing based on the amount of mails that they send each month.
o Medium Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 per month
o Large Strategies. 55,000-100,000 subscribers, $285.99-$494.99 a month
o Extra Large Strategies. 125,000-1,000,000 subscribers, $659.99-$4,273.99 per 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 lets you pay through PayPal. They also offer you a 25% discount for nonprofits and educators.
Benchmark is a good program. It’s easy to use, Open to invention, and competitively priced. Its free options might just be the very best in the company for anybody who just wants to dip into email advertising (especially small, local companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work well for a small business which perspectives email as a little element of its marketing and has no desire to work beyond the principles just yet.
If you are a little or maybe medium-sized Business looking for a simple email marketing program using a host of great features, Benchmark is an excellent choice. Though there might come a time when you outgrow the program, it supplies a lot for the price, offers exceptional service, and the company appears to be sensitive to the requirements of its customers. You can not ask for more.