There are a number of email newsletter service providers on the market. You will find options in a variety of price ranges and with varying features. There are a few key features you will want to look for when choosing a newsletter service. These things will save you time, keep you out of trouble and ensure you are getting the most out of your email marketing strategy.
Templates – Unless you are a knowledgeable web designer, there is a good chance you do not want to spend time creating your own HTML email newsletter templates. You want something ready to drag, drop and roll. Many of the best newsletter services will have a variety of templates to choose from.
Double Opt-In – This is an extra step that ensures those subscribing to your newsletter actually want to receive your messages. While some marketers are against the double opt-in, it can actually make your list better. It helps eliminate bounces, unsubscribes, spam traps and more. As with any business metric, quality is far more important than quantity.
Easy Unsubscribe – Speaking of unsubscribes, your newsletter service provider should make this process easy and readily available. If someone can’t unsubscribe, or can’t find where to unsubscribe, they are going to hit the “Spam” button. If they want out, let them out. As mentioned previously, why pay for people who don’t want to hear your message anyway?
Tracking Capabilities – Stats like open rate and click-through rate can help you tremendously with your email marketing return. Choose a service that includes this capability.
Reputation – I’m not referring to reviews, though that is certainly important as well. One thing you have to know with online service providers is that the company’s reputation as a whole can impact the deliverability of your messages. This is one reason to be wary of free services with little restrictions in place. If they are allowing spam to be sent by other users, that will likely be the folder your clean messages end up in as well. Reputable service providers will often use their deliverability rate as a selling point.
Integration – Thankfully, we have a lot of automation available these days. Choosing a service that integrates with other popular software and tools will save you a lot of time. Many reputable services can be set up to automatically email new blog posts, be shared on social media, add new customers after a purchase and more.
The last thing you want to do is look for a newsletter service that is “good enough for now.” You do not want to constantly switch service providers. This can be a headache not only for you, but also for your subscribers who may have to opt-in each time, deal with the hiccups during set up and more. Go into it looking for a service that will grow with you, not that you will grow out of.
I have found all of these things and more in ConvertKit. What is on your must-have list for an email newsletter service?