You already know that email marketing is one of the best ways to connect with your audience.
However, did you know that automating your email marketing makes your results even better? Companies that send automated emails are 133% more likely to send messages that resonate with a customer’s buying journey. Plus, over 75% of email revenue comes from automated campaigns.
Automating your email strategy with the right software isn’t just good for efficiency reasons. It also means that you can drive better results too.
Email marketing software gives you the end-to-end technology you need to understand each stage of the customer journey and create messages that strengthen relationships.
So, how do you choose the right platform?
Top Features to Consider in Email Marketing Software
Around 60% of marketers say that email marketing delivers significant ROI for their team. However, you can only access results like that if you have the right technology to drive your campaigns. Email marketing software comes in a variety of styles and sizes to suit your needs.
For instance, if you’re a company that’s new to email advertising, ConvertKit offers a convenient and user-friendly approach to marketing. You can segment your users, build drag-and-drop email templates, and even analyse your results.
If you’re more advanced in the email space, then ActiveCampaign might be the better choice. ActiveCampaign is an email tool with state-of-the-art automation triggers and campaign building tools. This technology is the go-to option for many email enthusiasts.
Of course, there are dozens of other options out there too.
So, how do you start? Begin by looking for these features.
1. Integrations with leading tools
This is a feature that’s becoming increasingly important in recent years.
To create a comprehensive customer relationship and email strategy, you need access to all of your essential tools and information in one place. Your CRM, or Customer Relationship Management tool, will be one of the most important tools you use as you get to know your audience.
Having email marketing software that natively integrates with your CRM makes it much easier to manage all of your customer data and content in the same place. You can even get deeper insights into your client’s behavior by combining the two worlds.
Leading email companies now offer a wide selection of integrations to help businesses improve their campaigns. The more access you have to things like CRM technology, eCommerce tools, files, forms, and data, the better your messages become.
2. Beautiful Email Templates
Have you ever seen a professional email in your inbox and wondered how the business made it look so great? While some companies do code their email designs from scratch, many have a secret weapon – templates. A rich selection of email templates means that no-one has to create a new email from scratch.
Your chosen provider of email marketing software should have a wide selection of engaging templates that are convenient, customizable, and easy to use. Look for templates that suit a selection of industry purposes. Additionally, make sure that you can add your own branding and colors into the mix to personalize the appearance.
If you have a developer on-hand or you know your way around code, then it might be helpful to look for the feature to work with HTML and CSS templates too. This gives you a lot more freedom to work with things like dynamic content and personalized modules.
3. An Intuitive Builder
In a world where your customers are getting more messages in their inbox than ever before, it’s important to have an email tool that’s easy to use, convenient, and brimming with customization options. Most beginners will prefer a WYSIWYG editor.
What you see is what you get editors work well for people who don’t have a lot of background coding knowledge. It allows users to drag and drop different elements into their messages, taking advantage of the template they chose. The editor will give you full control over things like CTA buttons, hero images, text, dividers, spacers, and anything else you might need.
From there, you can customize every aspect of your message to ensure that it stands out successfully in your customer’s inbox. For instance, look at how clean and simple the LastPass email is:
An intuitive email builder will also allow you to save your personalized templates so you can use the same styles again in the future. This allows for a more consistent brand appearance.
4. Brilliant Mobile Responsivity
Did you know that over half of all emails are opened on a mobile device? In this digital landscape, businesses can’t afford to have messages that only look “ok” on mobile. Your email marketing software needs to give your customers the best experience on every device.
The good news is that all of the top email marketing software solutions today come with responsivity built-in. However, you can boost your chances of getting the right results from every campaign by choosing a software solution that shows you a preview of your mobile emails.
The option to see your email campaigns presented in mobile format will ensure that you’re delivering the right experience to your audience. The last thing you want is to discover that you thought your email was optimized, but people can’t click your CTA from mobile.
5. Built-in Testing
Excellent email marketing requires constant optimization and improvement. Your email marketing software can help with this. Many of the leading clients on the market today allow you to test things like how likely your email is to be flagged as spam. This instantly improve your open rates.
Find a provider that allows you to test your emails for spam and deliverability rates before you send them to subscribers.
At the same time, look for rich reporting and analytics capabilities for after you send your campaigns too. A great set of analytics tools will help you to keep an eye on the most important metrics for your campaigns.
Look for reports that cover things like click-through rates, open rate, bounce rate, and unsubscribe rate. These high-level data points will demonstrate the overall success of your campaigns. It’s also worth looking into secondary reporting options that you can access through integrations with third-party tools, like Google analytics.
6. Flexbility and Scalability
Just because you’re only sending a handful of email campaigns now, doesn’t mean that you’re not going to want more features later. As your email list continues to grow, you don’t want to be limited by your email marketing provider.
Start by looking for a company that offers a range of pricing options. This should allow you to start with a very low-cost package when you’re still new to email marketing. As you grow your list, you can upgrade to have a bigger sending limit and even more features.
It’s also worth looking for email providers that offer optional add-ons for extra services, like SMS marketing, or even more advanced analytics. Some of the leading email marketing tools available today even allow companies to access things like predictive lead scoring and analytics.
Having the option to upgrade and include these features at a later stage will give you more flexibility as your company grows.
7. Email Automation Options
Finally, as we mentioned above, one of the biggest benefits of using email marketing software is that it allows you to automate your campaigns. With automated campaigns, you can ensure that the right message reaches the best customer at the time that’s right for you.
Many businesses convert prospects into leads just by creating a series of triggered emails that appear in the customer’s inbox at just the right time. Your email marketing software should help you to do this by combining personalized information about customer behavior, with in-depth analytics.
Look at the email automation services that are available from your provider and find out whether they’re easy enough to use. How simple is it to split different email campaigns between segments in your audience? Does your provider make customer journey mapping easy, so you know exactly when to send welcome messages or sale content?
The more options you have to get in-depth with your automation and triggers, the easier it will be to create meaningful moments with your audience.
Choosing the Ideal Email Marketing Software
There are plenty of different kinds of email marketing solutions out there for businesses today. You can choose simpler solutions intended for beginners who want to boost their conversations with companies. Or you can opt for a full-stack automation service, complete with some of the best analytics information on the market.
One of the best ways to ensure you make the right decision is to test some of the different software solutions before you sign on the dotted line. Many of these tools come with demos and free account options to give you a taste of the software before you jump in.
Once you’ve spent some time experimenting with some of the class-leading providers, it’s much easier to find the tool that’s right for you.