How to Choose the Best Email Marketing Platform for Your Small Business
Email marketing can grow your business. Once you've established your website, developing an email marketing program builds stronger relationships with customers and streamlines outreach to prospective buyers.
An email marketing platform can help you manage your list, send regular email newsletters, and schedule automated campaigns for everything from launching new products to turning prospects into customers.
Here's a closer look at how to choose the best email marketing platform for your unique business needs.
Evaluating Which Provider is Right for You
There's no one-size-fits-all approach to selecting an email marketing platform. However, there are a number of features to consider when choosing a provider:
Budget. Some email platforms charge a monthly subscription. Others vary based on your list size, the number of emails you send or the features you access.
Delivery reliability. Email marketing is only effective if your messages reach your audience. Explore the delivery success scores of platforms you're considering, and opt for a provider with a 90% + success rate.
List management and segmentation. Your email marketing list will be stored in your email marketing platform. Evaluate the list-related features the email marketing platform provides. The best platforms will support audience segmentation, targeted campaigns toward certain lists and reporting that lets you drill down into analytics based on your specific needs.
Security. What steps does the provider take to keep your data secure? Your email list is a valuable business asset; ensure that any partner you're going to work with takes cybersecurity and client data seriously.
Sign-up verifications. As data privacy laws become stricter around the globe, it's important to choose a provider that aligns with the latest regulations. Choose an email marketing platform that requires a double opt-in to keep you in compliance with the latest email marketing regulations.
Ease of use. Who is going to be formatting, scheduling and sending your emails? Ensure that the user experience and administrative dashboards are easy to use and the right fit for your or your marketing team's level of tech-savvy.
Mobile optimization. A majority of your customers will be accessing their emails via smartphone or tablet. Choose a provider with mobile optimization.
Templates and customization. Your email marketing is an important extension of your branding. Look for features that let you add your logo and brand colors, or that offer professional templates that can be customized to your needs.
Response handling. Certain email platforms have advanced handling features that make it easy to respond to customer queries or funnel incoming messages to customer service requests. While this is an advanced feature, it can become essential to delivering winning customer service as you scale.
Platforms to Consider
As you evaluate providers, take a closer look at the following companies that specialize in small business email marketing:
- MailChimp is an email marketing platform that offers a range of features at affordable price points. Their basic plan is free, with additional options to scale as you grow.
- Infusionsoft is a small business email marketing provider that offers a robust set of features and add-on integrations, such as CRM systems.
- GetResponse is a robust email marketing platform designed with small businesses in mind. Their campaign, survey and other features make it easy to stay in touch with customers.
- HubSpot is an integrated website and email marketing platform that focuses on building end-to-end sales and marketing funnels.
The right email marketing platform can help you gain more value out of your website by making it easier to build an email list, launch a newsletter and stay in touch with customers and prospects. Take the time to define your needs and budget — and then explore what the market has to offer in order to develop an email marketing strategy that will take your business to the next level.