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What We Learned About Email Benchmarks in 2021 + 10 Email Marketing Platforms

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Each year, different trends hit the email marketing industry. By tracking these trends and identifying key email marketing benchmarks, marketers can identify opportunities for improvement in the coming year. 

These insights give visibility into how the needs of consumers are changing and how we may need to adjust our email marketing efforts to account for that. Taking the time to review last year’s email benchmarks will help set you up for success and create more effective campaigns this year. 

In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the key findings based on the 2021 email marketing benchmarks to provide you with the tips you need to make 2022 the best year yet and provide you with ten email platforms to make it happen. 

woman using her smartphone

Retailers Sent More Emails, but Engagement Rates Remained High

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Over the last year or two, retailers have had to get creative when connecting with their customers. When people were no longer going out to shop and were more concerned with how and where they were spending their money, retailers had to adjust their marketing strategies. 

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Luckily, email marketing was an excellent opportunity for retailers to reach their customers in an effective and cost-efficient manner that was welcomed by consumers. Because of this, retailers increased their email efforts and sent more email and mobile text messages to their customers over the last year. 

Sending more emails to your customers can be a tricky balance. Too many may make them feel like you’re spamming them but not sending enough risks them forgetting about you. Making the wrong call about how many messages your customers are willing to receive could have a negative impact on your campaign metrics. 

Luckily, consumers were receptive to receiving more emails from the brands they follow. Across the board, engagement, conversions, and revenue metrics remained strong and provided businesses with a positive outcome. 

Retailers Used Personalized Product Recommendations to Increase Conversions

Personalization still plays a very important role in the success of email marketing campaigns – and that was no different last year. 

One personalization tactic that many retailers have started to integrate into their email marketing campaigns is personalized product recommendations. 

This is the idea of using real-time customer data to predict what products a customer may be interested in based on past purchases or browsing behaviors. These recommendations are then served up to the customer to catch their eye with other items they may be interested in purchasing. 

These types of emails can be used to connect with your customers throughout the entire purchasing journey and encourage cross-selling at various stages of the cycle. 

Personalized product recommendations are a great addition to email campaigns and can be highly effective when added to transactional emails such as product confirmation messages. 

Personalized product recommendations can drastically increase the average order value of your email marketing campaigns. By serving up products that are similar or complementary to the products your customers are already buying, you’ll see a positive impact on engagement and revenue. Image courtesy of Barilliance

Considering that 49% of consumers say they have purchased a product they did not initially intend to buy after receiving personalized recommendations, it’s a great way to increase campaign conversion and drive higher revenue. 

Mobile Text Marketing Can Increase Email Growth 

Text marketing has become a topic of discussion for many retailers over the last few years – and good reason. 

two white printer papers near macbook on brown surface

Text marketing is a great way to connect with your audiences on a channel they’re more likely to see and engage with. It’s also a place where your customers want to interact with the brands they love and can help increase the success of your campaigns. Image courtesy of Spark

The channel has impressive statistics that explain why so many retailers are starting to invest more into the text marketing space, such as: 

  • SMS messages have a 98% open rate
  • 75% of customers want to receive offers via text 
  • The click-through rate for offers is higher than any other channel
  • 60% of customers read them within 1-5 minutes after receiving them

As more companies adopt text marketing in addition to email, they are finding that the two channels fit together perfectly. 

Since both channels are permission-based, you can use the data you have on each customer to create personalized experiences across both platforms. This will allow you to create highly engaging content that resonates with your audiences through email and SMS. 

By using email and text marketing together, you can gain even more valuable insights from your customers. Collecting data from customer interactions on both channels will provide you with the information you need to create a more personalized, engaging experience no matter where you connect with them. 

Together, email and text marketing can help you reach new audiences and build stronger relationships with the customers you already have through more personalized experiences that reach them where they’re most active. 

A Single Integrated Platform is Crucial

If you’re currently using multiple platforms to manage your marketing channels, then you may already know how valuable a single integrated platform can be. Managing multiple channels and connecting customer data across different platforms can be challenging, and you’ll likely never get it right. 

That’s why investing in a single integrated platform is so important. With one centralized platform that can help you manage various marketing channels, you can do more with what you have. 

These are just a few of the reasons why having one platform that does it all can benefit you: 

  • Create cross-channel experiences through one automated workflow
  • Unifying customer data to improve personalization
  • Tapping into customer engagement information across all channels

Choosing to invest in an all-in-one marketing platform will provide you with the tools you need to continue growing your business and set you up for future growth. You’ll have valuable insights into who your customers are and how they’re engaging with your brand across various channels and touchpoints. 

If you’re looking to create a true customer-centric marketing experience, having a single integrated platform is something you’ll want to make the investment in. 

List Growth Is the Foundation of Email Marketing Success

As digital privacy changes continue to evolve, first-party data is now more critical than ever – and email is a great place to gather it. 

When customers subscribe to your content, you can ask them for specific information about themselves. This helps you paint a picture about who they are and allows you to begin to personalize content towards their needs. 

But continuing to put efforts into growing your subscriber list isn’t only about learning more about your customers, and it’s also about reaching new audiences and combating churn rates. 

Over time, you will inevitably lose some subscribers. People simply lose interest in your products or may have marked your content as spam and no longer want to receive your emails. 

If you’re not actively working to grow your subscriber list, your growth rates will start to trend down – and no one wants to explain that to their boss. 

This is the type of email growth you want to see for your own business. Having a strategy in place will allow you to show continued growth in your subscribership and can help combat the dreaded inactive and churn rates. Image courtesy of Bledno

There are many things you can do to encourage people to subscribe to your email content, including: 

  • Create unique email content
  • Share lead-generating offers
  • Develop gated online tools and resources 
  • Run online contests 
  • Promote a monthly newsletter 

Continuously growing your subscriber list will help you reach more audiences and keep your email marketing metrics where you want to see them. 

10 Email Marketing Platforms

When it comes to managing your email marketing efforts, having one centralized platform is one of the best things you can do. This will allow you to collect and leverage customer data in one place and use that information to create highly personalized campaigns. 

There are many different platforms available today that can help you reach your goals regarding email and text marketing. To help you start to sort through the options, we’ve compiled a list of ten great email marketing platform options. 

Each has its pros and cons, but all of these tools can help you elevate your email marketing efforts and improve the success of your campaigns. 

  1. Listrak

Listrak is a cross-channel marketing platform with everything you need to provide your customers with highly relevant and engaging email and text marketing campaigns. This platform offers you a single source of truth for customer data and a centralized place to manage all of your marketing efforts. 

Make every interaction with your customers count. By having the right tools and customer insights, you can send messages to your subscribers with the content that they’re most likely to engage with. Back in stock or price drop emails are a great way to pique interest and bring customers back to your site. Image courtesy of Listrak

Platform Highlights

  • Email automation capabilities that allow you to create highly targeted campaigns utilizing tools like predictive analytics, retail segmentation, dynamic content, and more 
  • Predictive product recommendations will help you stay ahead of the changing needs of your customers and increase email revenue 
  • Text message marketing capabilities that make it simple to connect with your customers on their most used devices, build stronger relationships, and increase revenue 
  • Tap into Listrak’s Growth Xcelerator Platform to improve list growth, onsite conversions, and triggered revenue 

Pricing: This platform has customized pricing based on each individual company’s needs. You’ll need to speak with a representative to learn more about what your plan pricing would look like.

Best for: Listrak is a platform that works well for retail businesses of all sizes. 

What makes Listrak stand out: The cross-channel marketing capabilities that can help you leverage your existing customer data to create a comprehensive experience from one channel to the next. 

  1. Sendinblue

Sendinblue is a marketing and sales tool that can help you elevate your email and text marketing strategies. It provides you with everything you need to create professional messages, send and automate them, and integrate personalized components into each communication. 

Designing emails can be a breeze with the help of the drag-and-drop tool provided by Sendinblue. Then, once your message is ready to go, all you have to do is choose your audiences and hit send. These types of tools make it easier to manage your email strategy, save time for your teams, and still provide your customers with quality content. Image courtesy of Sendinblue

Platform Highlights

  • Easily create personalized content that makes your emails stand out in a recipient’s inbox with dynamic text and other advanced personalization tools
  • Use text marketing to connect with your customers by sharing promotions, special event details, and time-sensitive content within minutes
  • Tap into an unlimited list of subscribers and contacts with defined segments that make it even easier to create personalized experiences at scale 
  • Grow your subscriber list through customized landing pages, signup forms, and Facebook Ads

Pricing: This platform has multiple options available, including the Free plan, the Lite plan starting at $25 per month, the Premium plan starting at $65 per month, and the Enterprise plan with customized pricing. Plan pricing varies based on the number of emails you plan to send monthly.

Best for: Sendinblue has plan options available for businesses of all sizes. 

What makes Sendinblue stand out: Sendinblue makes it easy to reach new audiences through customized landing pages, signup forms, and Facebook ads. 

  1. EngageBay

EngageBay is a marketing platform that makes it simple for you to identify new opportunities to create customized experiences for your customers. This is a single-source platform that will make it easy for you to communicate with your audiences and connect your marketing, sales, and support teams at the same time. 

Create campaigns that are automatically sent to subscribers based on their preference or recent actions with your brand. These campaigns will help to keep them engaged over time and can continue to nurture them to help build stronger relationships that drive loyalty. Image courtesy of EngageBay

Platform Highlights

  • Create and send emails that engage your audiences through personalization and automated drip campaigns to continue to build relationships by continuing to nurture them
  • Use text marketing to send messages to all of your customers via bulk messages that have automated responses ready to reply to your audiences when they message back
  • Schedule both email and text marketing campaigns to ensure your customers are always receiving some form of communication from your brand
  • Get the analytics and reporting data you need to know exactly how each campaign and message is performing 

Pricing: This platform has multiple plan types available but if you’re looking for an all-in-one platform the plan options include the Free plan, the Basic plan costing $11.99 per month, the Growth plan costing $39.99 per month, and the Pro plan costing $79.99 per month. Pricing is listed per user. 

Best for: EngageBay is a great platform for small and medium size businesses. 

What makes EngageBay stand out: The EngageBay platform has a wide variety of tools to help improve your marketing efforts beyond email and text marketing.

  1. AWeber

The AWeber marketing platform is an email marketing tool that will provide you with everything you need to create professional emails and integrate personal touches for each recipient. While this tool may not have text marketing, it’s email capabilities helped it make our list. 

Creating emails has never been easier than it is with the AWeber tool. The Canva integration makes it possible for people of all skill levels to create professional messages that encourage customers to convert. From there you just have to choose the right segment, hit send, and watch as your customers start to engage with the messages. Image courtesy of AWeber

Platform Highlights

  • With Canva integrated into the platform you can easily create and design emails without ever having to leave your account
  • Create targeted messages through email segmentation to drive higher engagement and personalize for each recipient 
  • Automate emails to ensure your connecting with customers at the right time, with the right content 
  • Increase the number of subscribers on your list by creating custom landing pages that encourage lead fills and conversions 

Pricing: This platform has multiple plan options available including the Free plan, the Pro plan starting at $16.15 per month, and a customized plan for businesses with large accounts. 

Best for: AWeber is another platform that is great for small and medium-size businesses. 

What makes AWeber stand out: You can easily create and integrate eCommerce pages into your marketing strategy in an effort to drive more revenue dollars. 

  1. Emercury

Emercury is another email-only focused platform, but it provides you with all of the email tools you need to make a lasting impression on your customers. From creating custom workflows to improving deliverability and growing your subscriber list – you can accomplish all of your email marketing goals with this platform. 

Make sure your emails make it to your customer’s inbox with the right deliverability tools. If your messages are being filtered out or sent to a junk inbox, you’ll be wasting your time and the message will never be seen by the intended audiences. Image courtesy of Emercury

Platform Highlights

  • Create customer journeys that are designed to engage and convert new leads and then continue to nurture them through automated messages
  • Improve email deliverability to ensure that every email you send makes it to your customer’s inbox 
  • Set autoresponders to respond to the actions your customers are taking such as welcome messages or delivering a lead magnet they requested 
  • Grow your subscriber base by adding forms to your website and making it easy for people to join your email list

Pricing: This platform has multiple plan options available including the Starter plan starting at $57 per month, the Grow plan starting at $227 per month, the Pro plan starting at $687 per month, and the Scale plan starting at $1167 per month. Pricing for each plan does change based on the number of contacts you have. 

Best for: Emercury is a platform that is best for small and medium-size businesses. 

What makes Emercury stand out: Reassurance that your messages will make it into the inbox of your subscribers through the platform’s high deliverability rates. 

  1. MailerLite

MailerLite is an email marketing platform that provides you with the tools you need to continue growing your subscriber base and increase revenue. With this tool, you’ll have everything you need to optimize your content for success and continue growing your list to reach more audiences over time. 

Connect with your customers on a more personalized level by engaging with them in real-time actions. With automated workflows, you can easily adjust messaging based on how each customer engaged with the previous message to continue serving the most relevant content possible. Image courtesy of MailerLite

Platform Highlights

  • Create dynamic emails that provide your customers with the content they want quickly and easily with a simple drag-and-drop editor 
  • Learn more about your subscribers and then tailor future messages to their needs with the help of A/B testing, segmentation, and surveys 
  • Automate email campaigns to ensure that your subscribers are receiving the most relevant, personalized messages based on their real-time interactions 
  • Continue to grow your audiences by attracting new customers through websites, landing pages, pop-ups, and embedded forms 

Pricing: This platform has multiple plan options available based on the number of subscribers you have. There is a free plan available and premium plan costs start at $10 per month for small subscriber lists to $50 for lists that have 5,000+ subscribers. Add-ons and customized plans are also available. 

Best for: MailerLite has plan options available for businesses of all sizes. 

What makes MailerLite stand out: The ability to create dynamic content and learn about how your customers are interacting with your content through real, data-driven capabilities. 

  1. GetResponse

GetResponse is a marketing platform that can help you improve your email marketing efforts while also automating processes and creating pages that help you convert more leads. This tool will allow you to connect with your audiences to drive higher engagement and increase sales. 

Growing your subscriber list has never been easier. With the help of GetResponse, you can easily create custom signup forms that encourage new users to convert. This will increase your list numbers and provide you with more insight on your customers to improve personalization capabilities. Image courtesy of GetResponse

Platform Highlights

  • Develop email newsletters that are sent on a regular cadence to keep customers in the know about company news, upcoming sales, and special offers
  • Build automated emails that interact with customers based on real-time behaviors and move them through their purchasing journey
  • Send emails at the most opportune moments with the Perfect Time and Time Travel delivery tools
  • Create custom signup forms that help drive conversions and grow your subscriber list 

Pricing: This platform has multiple plan options available, including the Free plan, the Basic plan starting at $12.3 per month, the Plus plan starting at $40.18 per month, the Professional plan starting at $81.18 per month, and customized plans for mid and large companies. Pricing does vary based on the number of contacts you have.

Best for: GetResponse is a good email marketing tool for small to medium-sized businesses cand can service larger companies. 

What makes GetResponse stand out: This platform has all the tools you need to create a highly engaging email marketing campaign and convert more leads with custom signup forms. 

  1. Drip

Drip is an email and SMS marketing platform that can help you reach your customers across the two platforms and create engaging experiences. With the help of the Drip platform, you can easily run multi-channel campaigns that target your audiences based on real-time data. 

With one centralized platform, you can easily manage your marketing campaigns and know exactly how each message is performing. This will allow you to react and adjust to the changing needs of your customers and improve future messages to improve success. Image courtesy of Drip

Platform Highlights

  • Tap into pre-built playbooks that allow you to easily create automated workflows to engage audiences, such as welcome series, abandoned cart messages, and post-purchase campaigns
  • Integrate customer data from all of your different channels into your eCommerce store to make the most out of every interaction
  • Target audiences based on their previous shopping and browsing behaviors to increase conversions 
  • Capture new audiences through forms and popups that make it easy for you to grow your audience

Pricing: This platform has two plan options available: the Email plan starting at $19 per month and the Email + SMS plan starting at $22 per month. Plan pricing does change based on the number of contacts you have. 

Best for: Drip is an email and text marketing tool that businesses of all sizes can use. 

What makes Drip stand out: It has everything you need to create highly engaging multi-channel marketing experiences. 

  1. User.com

User.com is a robust tool for marketing, sales, management, and support teams interacting and engaging with customers. It has all the capabilities you’ll need to drive highly engaging email marketing campaigns. 

Create automated email campaigns that connect with your audiences based on real-time interactions and behaviors. Sending welcome messages when someone new subscribes or reminds a customer about a product they left behind with cart abandonment campaigns. Image courtesy of User.com

Platform Highlights

  • Use tags and segmentation capabilities to make every email you send personalized to the recipient receiving it
  • Automate messages to ensure emails are sent to your customers on a regular basis and keep them engaged over time
  • Understand who your customers are, how they’re interacting with your content, and how each campaign is performing through detailed analytics 
  • Easily create professional-looking emails with a simple drag and drop editing tool 

Pricing: This platform has customized pricing based on business needs. You’ll need to speak with a company representative to learn more about what your pricing would look like. 

Best for: User.com is a platform that works well for businesses of all sizes.  

What makes User.com stand out: It’s a great tool for businesses looking to connect team members to drive a centralized, customer-centric view. 

  1. Campaign Monitor 

Campaign Monitor is an email marketing platform that can help you reach your audiences with the right message at the right time. It provides you with all the tools you need to provide your customers with a more customized experience while simplifying the campaign process for your teams. 

Create customized experiences for each of your subscribers that move them through a predesigned journey based on their interactions with each piece of content. This will improve the relevancy of your messages and encourage your audiences to engage with the content. Image courtesy of Campaign Monitor

Platform Highlights

  • Use smart segments that use real-time customer data to build hyper-targeted segments and allow you to send highly personalized emails
  • Develop automated customer journeys that change and evolve as the needs of your customers do 
  • Send transactional emails to keep customers up-to-date on things like online purchases and shipping confirmations 
  • Continue to grow your subscriber list with the help of signup forms that make it simple for new audiences to join your campaign lists 

Pricing: This platform has multiple plan options available including the Basic plan starting at $9 per month, the Unlimited plan starting at $29 per month, the Premier plan starting at $149 per month, and high volume plans that are customized based on business needs. Pricing does change based on the number of contacts you have.

Best for: Campaign Monitor is an excellent tool for small to medium-sized businesses.  

What makes Campaign Monitor stand out: This platform makes it simple for you to integrate with other programs to create more comprehensive experiences and leverage customer data across platforms. 

Take the Learnings From 2021 and Turn Them Into Actionable Improvements This Year

Choosing to learn from the benchmarks and insights from the previous year will give you a leg up on the competition. As your customers’ needs evolve and the world of email marketing changes – it’s important to stay ahead of the trends. 

Even if you only choose to take one or two of these benchmark findings and put them into action, you’ll be setting yourself up to improve your email marketing efforts this year. From there, you can continue to evolve as your customers’ needs do and see higher engagement and revenue metrics. 

To stay competitive in email marketing, you need to always look for the next big thing. Leaning on last year’s trends will help you get ahead and stay relevant to your customers. 

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