Overview Email Response Rates By Industry
For many an evening in 2004, three people sat Around one desk in a small medical office — an office which functioned as the group’s conference room, lunch room, and idea hub. Backed by a small programming group in India, the trio (consisting of Benchmark Internet Group founder Curt Keller, his wife Denise, along with an SEO pro ) discussed ideas on how best to implement a deceptively straightforward concept. Simple email marketing. Many of their thoughts were beyond the resources of this fledgling business, but that did not stop Keller from planning ahead.
The first Customers of Benchmark Mail were small companies located in near proximity to Benchmark’s one-room HQ in Long Beach, CA. Keller and his team sold them on the usage of email marketing, while working hard to create a very simple user interface that would be easy to operate. All the time, the business uses such novel ideas as customizable templates and applications which adapted to consumer needs. They also made certain from the beginning that anyone who needed help would have quick access to excellent customer support.
Benchmark Has continued to grow and advantagesper. Its current focus. Providing worldwide email advertising solutions to small and medium-sized companies while continuing to honor a commitment to help kids in need. This does not indicate that Benchmark is a little-guys-only service, however; it has stuck to its core principle of adaptability and serves 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 has not forgotten its origins. Benchmark still keeps good relationships with little, locally-based companies. In fact, the organization offers a full page of testimonials from users of the app. You may read about Benchmark’s history and development here.
While most of the attributes Benchmark provides Are on par with the rest of the business, one of the standout features of this ESP is the simple 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 provides all users access to its library of over 400 templates. These are organized into 19 categories, some of which are tailored to specific industries like education, entertainment, and retail. There is also a category for societal media-specific templates.
· Video Emails. Perhaps the best-known benefit of Benchmark is its support for video mails. The company describes the advantages of this feature here.
· Online Surveys. You’ll be able to create professional-looking online surveys using among Benchmark’s 6 templates. Post your poll on your website or build it 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 here.
· 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 works with ReturnPath, a leading email delivery and delivery support. The business also communicates with ISPs on its customers’ behalf. Email Response Rates By Industry
· Mobile App. Benchmark’s mobile programs make it possible for customers having an Apple device to access several purposes on the road. They can get and include contacts, read reports, send videos through integration with a YouTube account, and even layout and send fast email blasts with one of 10 templates that are available. This is quite a bit more than a number of other businesses offer on their mobile apps, making them much more functional.
· 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 accessible.
· Code Editor. In case you’ve got the know-how to work magic with HTML, Benchmark offers this ultra-customization option with which you may construct your mails from scratch.
· Autoresponder. Each Benchmark client has the power to design 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 mails.
· Sign-Up Types . The only way to become prosperous in email advertising is through growing your list, and Benchmark actually promotes doing this through sign-up forms. The company bases its Free For Life account entirely around website and Facebook sign-ups and supplies an easy-to-use tool to create custom templates for every medium.
· Inbox Checker. Since every email program is different and every web browser includes a signature style, making certain your emails look good 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 to Safari, mobile to PC) is a paid add-on service, available for $14 each 100 checks.
· RSS-to-Email. Regular bloggers can create newsletters from their sites mechanically through the RSS-to-Email feature, which works with any site which manages an RSS-feed. Users simply need to set up a campaign and template within 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 programs which use JSON, XML, XML-RPC, or PHP serialization strings. In a nutshell, this allows them to perform three purposes. Manage contact lists, manage campaigns and effort sending, and check data. The company 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
Enrolling in a Benchmark accounts is fairly straightforward. After entering your name, email, contact number, and business name, you have to validate your email address. This was a five-minute process for me. Upon logging into my new account (using the free program ) I was greeted by an attractive UI that gave me a very clear path 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, proceed into the Emails segment, then hit on the big blue”Create New Email” button at the top right-hand corner. Email Response Rates By Industry
From there, you have to decide If You Would like 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’re 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 alternative.
I had been motivated to enter a subject line for my Email and set up how much tracking I wanted on the message, as well as when I wanted an automated tweet when 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 start building the email itself. If you want to, you can construct your personal email layouts employing a very intuitive editor. On the flip side, you can modify one of Benchmark’s templates, which can be great, and much better than I was able to do on my own.
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 people who already have a listing, there are several ways to import it. You are able to upload a CSV, xls, or txt file directly from the computer; import contacts directly from Salesforce.com, Hotmail, or Gmail accounts; or copy and paste huge lists of contacts into a text type. When you create your Benchmark lists, they’ll show up on your dashboard, together with a Master Unsubscribe List.
The actual sending of this email is rather simple. When you have completed all of your tweaks, you can either save email as a draft, send it immediately, or schedule a time and date for delivery. If you want to verify everything is well before distributing your email about the planet, you can send it to your self to preview it as many as 10 times/day. I opted to program my email for shipping to view how timely the automatic system would actually be. I advised my email for 2.45 and received it in 2.50, therefore while the timing wasn’t exactly perfect, it was likely within tolerance levels for most users. If you’re one of the more rare users who need on-the-minute email sending, you might have to look elsewhere. More worryingly, my email did not go to my main inbox but was automatically sorted into my”promotions” folder. Definitely not perfect.
Mail Campaign Reporting
The first thing I Noticed about Benchmark email reports was something I’d read in a couple of reviews. They’re really, really quickly. I mean lightning fast. Opens register in the Benchmark system almost immediately. I have worked with several different apps where these reports take hours or even days to appear.
Benchmark provides users with several key Pieces of data about each campaign. The possibly most important statistic, the open rate, seems in both pie chart and numerical form. Additionally, Benchmark provides users with stats for clicks, forwards, bounces, unsubscribes, and abuse. Every stat further breaks down to the specific email addresses associated with a given activity. Users may export this information for further analysis via a csv or xls file. There is also a social media area which reports shares through Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, as well as a map which breaks down, by state, who opens your mails. Email Response Rates By Industry
Though all of this information is great and Necessary, it isn’t enough to sustain increased level marketers who need more information such as conversions, which links were clicked, and revenue analysis. Though Google Analytics provides a lot of that information with appropriate integration, there may come a time when serious entrepreneurs need more info than Benchmark provides. Whether a small business will get to that point varies, naturally, dependent on the company.
Specific Size Of Business
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 businesses, particularly 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 larger plans have limitations.
Integrations and Add-Ons
Benchmark Offers roughly 20 plug-ins and integrations. If you do not see the integration you need, there is still hope. You’re able to use the API or ask 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 app allows users to create and customize events, promote and market tickets, and monitor 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 directly into Benchmark and use Benchmark’s email system to maintain Salesforce customers engaged. Read our overview of Salesforce here.
· WordPress — Benchmark Mail Lite is a WordPress plugin which allows users to easily build an email viewer via their readers. The plugin can automatically create email variations of blog articles and allows users to connect up to five Benchmark accounts.
· Highrise — Merges Highrise contacts with a Benchmark listing. Read our review of Highrisehere.
· Benchmark Power — This free plugin lets you supply pictures for your Benchmark mails from places throughout the web. Benchmark Power captures pictures you locate and instantly uploads them to a Benchmark accounts for future use.
· Flickr — Users with Flickr accounts may link Flickr for their own Benchmark image galleries.
· Shopify — You are able to link a Shopify account to Benchmark and mechanically add Shopify clients to Benchmark lists. You can even add contributors to various lists based on which products they purchased. Read our review 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 program and download it .
· WordPress — The ever-present blog and website builder provides an integration with Benchmark. Use it to send emails of your blog posts and also use the analytics to observe how your subscribers respond to them. Learn more here.
· Zapier — Gain access to Zapier’s enormous integration library . Email Response Rates By Industry
Social Media Integrations
Since Of the key connection between social media and email marketing, it is very important to look at the social networking features included in Benchmark.
· Social Media Templates — One segment of Benchmark’s enormous email template list is made of societal media-specific templates that directly promote your institution’s participation in social media forums like facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
· Facebook”Like” Button — Benchmark provides a very simple function which permits you to add a Facebook”Just Like” button into your own emails.
· Facebook Sign-Up Form — Benchmark supplies 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 Email — Once you link your Benchmark account with your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn account, you can add switches to every email which will direct your subscribers to each of your social networking pages.
The company 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 nations. When customers provide credit card numbers to Benchmark, the company uses secure socket layer (SSL) protection to encrypt the information. The whole platform is encrypted to ensure the safety of customers’ personal details.
Anti-Spam Policy and Protection
Like All valid ESPs, Benchmark takes junk seriously and outlines a clear zero-tolerance policy for any of the users trying to engage in spam actions. The company is fully in compliance with the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act of 2003. Benchmark also takes several measures to maintain its reputation as a spam-free supplier, among them membership from 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 commonly used in spam messages. It scores every email on a scale from 1 to 5; 5s are assigned to content that’s likely to be blocked. In the event of a high score, the program suggests”less spammy” choices. Individualized IP addresses also help large-volume senders decrease their spam amounts.
Customer Support and Service
Benchmark Offers its users a great deal of support resources. Customer service is generally responsive, with minimal waiting times. The site offers good learning tools, but may be needlessly opaque occasionally. Key information can be buried and difficult to locate, particularly if you don’t know exactly what you’re searching for, particularly when it comes to minute particulars about plans. As an example. That 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 said when you register. The only place it’s mentioned is at the FAQ, here.
Here are some of those resources Benchmark offers. Email Response Rates By Industry
· Live Email and Support — Benchmark supplies live one-on-one aid through the following means.
· Email Support. Contact Benchmark at [email protected] or through the organization’s contact form here. Accessible 24 hours Monday — Friday and restricted hours on Saturday.
· Telephone Support. You can 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. Accessible 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 typical FAQ. You will find over 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 their FAQ as a whole. One 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 which is wholly inaccurate, so in some cases, you may need to contact support to hash things out.
· Video Tutorials and Webinars — Benchmark supplies about two dozen movie tutorials which take users step by step through the features of this program. The business also offers a webinar known as”Benchmark Email Crash Course.” You can see it live each Friday at 10.00 a.m. PST or see the recorded version at any moment. You might even ask for a particular webinar on quite a few different subjects. Live webinars comprise the chance to ask questions throughout the presentation.
· Email Marketing Manuals and Articles — You can find 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 issues. Articles, very similar to sites, offer users advice beyond that found in the FAQ section, but in shorter, more readable chunks compared to the guides provide.
· Glossary of Email Marketing Requirements — This can be a particularly helpful tool for all those brand new to email marketing who feel absorbed by all the jargon. Benchmark provides a glossarywith 50 of the very popular email marketing terms from”above-the-fold” into”whitelists.”
· Blog and Newsletter — For current info regarding email advertising trends, check out Benchmark’s monthly newsletter, in addition to its exceptionally active site. All subscribers automatically gain access to current newsletters, and Benchmark also offers an archive of newsletter posts from November 2007-October 2012.
· Benchmark Community — Benchmark users can post their latest newsletters on message boards in the Benchmark Community. This forum allows users to discuss newsletter production strategies, vote for their favourite newsletters, and gain inspiration from other Benchmark users.
Web-Based Or Locally-Installed
Benchmark is entirely web-based and doesn’t Require any installation on your PC.
Favorable Reviews and Testimonials
Benchmark Includes a four-out-of-five star score on G2 Crowd, with a slightly better showing on GetApp and Capterra. 4.5 stars each. Email Response Rates By Industry
Some common points of compliments.
· Top Notch Service . This is perhaps the most common monitoring regarding Benchmark, and something I noticed for myself too. People today tend to find support prompt and helpful, and some say it’s really the component that distinguishes Benchmark from its competitors. The company also receives praise for its website articles and videos.
· Feature Selection Across All Aims . Some users praise the inclusion of attributes like AB analyzing and surveys from most programs; many companies charge extra for such features or only include them in their pricier programs.
· Ease of Use. Users tend to find Benchmark’s interface extremely user-friendly and intuitive. The program gathers praise from a broad range of demographics, from first time ESP users to those who have attempted many different programs before settling on 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 consider.
Negative Reviews and Complaints
I was not able to find many people who loathed Their Benchmark experience. But, I was able to find a couple of complaints.
· Inconsistent Send-Times. Apparently a few users experienced an issue with Benchmark in which their mails were sent hours after they were scheduled. 1 customer theorized the issue might arise from lengthy lists of recipients. Not all customers of all Benchmark will possess time-sensitive shipping demands, but other people will. If you need your mails to go out precisely when your program dictates, you might need to consider this situation.
· Buggy Social Media Integrations. I saw several user reviews that remarked the social networking integrations in Benchmark aren’t up to par.
· “Spammy” Templates. Some users were worried that Benchmark’s templates can feel like spam email, causing receivers to mark them as junk rather than reading the contents. Since the whole purpose of an ESP is to stop this from occurring, this may be a problem. On the other hand, I never felt this way while looking through the template list, therefore it may not be the most valid of complaints.
Benchmark Provides a huge variety of pricing strategies, such as a free plan and a massive array of paid plans which can service anywhere between 600 and 7,140,000 subscribers.
Benchmark’s free programs do not require credit Cards, which is always refreshing. The only catch. There’ll be a small Benchmark logo at the bottom of each email you send out. Of course, you may always choose to upgrade to a paid program in case 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 list. Notable absences into the features list for free account comprise email automation and sub-accounts (enabling many users to access one Benchmark accounts ).
Paid Strategies. Email Response Rates By Industry
Users with little contacts lists and limited Monthly messages have the choice of paying to get their email advertising based on the amount of emails they send each month.
o Moderate Plans. 600-50,000 subscribers, $13.99-$254.99 per 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 per month
o Enormous Plans. 1,070,000-7,140,000 subscribers, $4,500-$29,200 a month
Benchmark accepts all Major credit cards and also allows you to pay through PayPal. They also offer a 25% discount for nonprofits and educators.
Benchmark is a solid program. It is easy to use, Open to innovation, and competitively priced. Its free options may very well be the best in the company for anyone who only wants to dive into email marketing (especially small, local companies ). For that matter, any Benchmark plan can work nicely for a small business which perspectives email as a little element of its advertising and has no desire to work past the principles just yet.
If you are a small or maybe medium-sized Company looking for a easy email advertising program with a multitude of amazing features, Benchmark is an excellent choice. Even though there may come a time when you launch the program, it supplies a great deal for the price, offers excellent service, and the business appears to be sensitive to the needs of its users. You can’t ask for much more.