Top 7 best email marketing services

There’s a target audience of billions of people out there using email

The way companies present and market themselves has changed radically over the last few years. With more consumers using internet-connected devices, digital marketing has become a crucial area of business management.

Any modern business that wants to get messages out to customers successfully can’t afford to neglect the power of technology. Traditional methods like printing and distributing leaflets have become almost obsolete.

There’s so much more you can achieve by sending company brand and product information through email. Not only can you do this at the relevant points in time – to coincide with things like sales and discounts – but you benefit from the fact that so many people have email accounts.

According to the Radicati Group, there are something like 2.5 billion email users around the world these days, up from 1.9 billion in 2009. This number is expected to grow to 2.9 billion by 2019. There’s obviously a lot of potential here, but to succeed, you’ll need the right email marketing software. And that’s exactly why we’ve highlighted the best offerings here.

1. Bronto

An easy-to-use solution pitched at retailers

Platforms: Web | Email Templates: Yes | Email database: Yes | Third-party integration: Magento, Netsuite | Free trial: No

Third-party friendly
Very customisable
Mainly centred around automation
Limited market reach

Bronto is one of the best email marketing software packages out there, providing you with easy-to-use commerce marketing automation for your business needs. It’s targeted specifically at retail companies, integrating specialist services such as Magento and Netsuite.

Using the system, you can manage a database of customer email addresses and send personalised campaigns to target specific customers at the right time. So if you’re running a sale on baby clothes, then you can target customers who have just had children or have bought baby items in the past.

The software is aimed at medium-sized and enterprise organisations, and it’s already used by major retailers like Trek and Lucky Brand.

2. Gator Express

A solution for quick and easy campaign creation

Platforms: Web | Email Templates: Yes | Email database: Yes | Third-party integration: Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, Sage, Act, GoldMine | Free trial: 14 days

Quick and easy campaign creation
Expert-designed templates
Enterprise-oriented
Integrations are sales-oriented

CommuniGator is another well-respected company that offers email marketing and automation software for small and medium-sized businesses. The firm’s Gator Express tool lets you put together an email campaign within a matter of minutes, and you don’t need to have any coding or design skills. 

It offers a suite packed with expert-designed templates to ensure you have a campaign that looks good, plus there’s a drag-and-drop editor, so you can easily add different elements based on the type of campaign you’re working on. Every email is designed to be well-presented on mobile devices, and you have the option to send emails to a specific audience or customer group.

3. MailChimp

A renown email marketing player

Platforms: Web, Android, iOS | Email Templates: Yes | Email database: Yes | Third-party integration: Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento, Big Commerce | Free trial: Free version available

Mobile apps
Useful analysis reports
Lack of mid-range price plan
UI can sometimes be complicated

Even if you haven’t used email marketing software before, you’ve more than likely heard of MailChimp. Launched in 2001, it’s a veteran and leader in this arena, allowing users to create and send professional marketing emails to a database of customers. 

Like many other products, there’s a built-in designer that offers a selection of templates which can be edited to your tastes. You can add elements like clickable text, graphics and logos, and there’s also the option of designing your own email from scratch if you have the requisite coding skills. 

MailChimp does well on the integration front, too, especially for online retailers. You’re able to link the system up to services such as Shopify, WooCommerce and Magento to send targeted product campaigns. Once you’ve unleashed your campaign, you can analyse its performance via the report feature. The software is free-to-use, although there are premium business packages which you'll need to purchase.

4. Mapp Digital

A tailored email marketing experience

Platforms: Web | Email Templates: Yes | Email database: Yes | Third-party integration: None | Free trial: No

Tailored services
Simple online dashboard
Prices aren't transparent
Favours enterprises

Mapp Digital, which was created by BlueHornet Networks and TeraData, provides companies of all sizes with a package of tools for online marketers, covering crucial areas such as email, social, mobile push and web marketing. With email marketing in mind, Mapp offers an easy-to-use dashboard that lets companies design and execute successful campaigns.

The emphasis is on ensuring emails are customer-centric, with plenty of regard for brand image and generating meaningful results from audiences. More than 3,000 companies are using the software, including big firms like Puma, PepsiCo, KFC, Thomas Cook, Xerox, Lloyds Bank, TSB and more.

5. Adobe Campaign

A proven solution combining online and offline channels

Platforms: Web | Email Templates: Yes | Email database: Yes | Third-party integration: None | Free trial: Free demo available

Proven company
Personalised experience
Lack of popular integrations
Enterprise-grade

Tech giant Adobe is also a proven leader in the email marketing arena. Adobe Campaign gives you the ability to personalise and deliver a marketing push across a variety of online and offline channels. 

You can create campaigns by making use of a drag-and-drop platform, identify appropriate customer channels using integrated profiles, deliver contextual and timely campaigns, automate campaigns so you can focus time and energy in other areas, and get reports on how your campaigns are performing.

6. Shutterstock Editor

A platform for creating highly visual emails

Platforms: Web | Email Templates: None | Email database: No | Third-party integration: No | Free trial: No

Lets you create impressive visual campaigns
Large selection of stock images
Lack of automation
Relies on third-party services

Shutterstock, which is a database of premium stock images, isn’t a company you’d think to associate with email marketing software. However, it’s just launched a new easy-to-use, web-based app that lets you quickly upload, edit, publish and share assets.

Editor offers businesses a way to find images and graphics for highly visual email campaigns, and there’s certainly no shortage of pics to choose from. The database recently surpassed 100 million images, covering a diverse range of categories.

Shutterstock Editor offers professionally designed templates, and lets you search for high-quality images, edit photos and illustrations using a range of tools, personalise designs by uploading a logo, and publish your creations on social media.

7. Campaign Monitor

A campaign builder with a ton of useful integrations

Platforms: Web | Email Templates: Yes | Email database: Yes | Third-party integration: Facebook, Shopify, WordPress, Google Analytics | Free trial: Demo available

Wide range of business app integrations
Feature-rich email builder
May take time to get used to
Not much else to complain about!

Campaign Monitor is a web-based platform, like many of the other offerings listed here, and it sports a professional-grade email builder that lets you create fully branded and personalised messages for customers. All emails are tailored to work well on a variety of different screen sizes and resolutions.

Once you’ve created a campaign, you’re able to send it to a list of subscribers automatically, or schedule it to go out at a set time. For example, if you have a Black Friday sale, you can schedule a campaign to go out in the early hours so customers are informed of certain deals with the maximum notice.

There’s handy list management facilities here, too, letting you manage all your customer emails and arrange them into target segments. The service is extremely popular, with over two million users from 200,000 businesses worldwide.