|Professionally Reviewed by: Alex Gurevich|
Digital Marketing Expert
Written By Jason Rowse - Digital Marketing Expert
Benchmark Email in a NutShell
|User Accounts:||Multiple with different logins|
|Segmentation and Geo:||Yes|
|Means of Use:||Mobile, tablet, social media|
|Industry:||Advertising, media, Ecommerce|
Benchmark Video Review
What is Benchmark Email?
Benchmark is an easy-to-use email marketing software perfect for businesses looking to create a new product or service. Benchmark's online survey feature can help gather feedback and recommendations from customers to improve a product. Including your subscribers in the production process makes them feel valued and they will more likely want to purchase that product or service in the future.
Benchmark Pros and Cons
- User-friendly: Emails sent out to contacts are generally only opened 24 to 48 hours after being received. With this unique Sendinblue SMS feature, you can send customers time-sensitive information and promotions. For example, you can send your subscribers an SMS that includes information about a sale ending in 5 hours, motivating your potential customers to act fast and make a purchase.
- Responsive emails:I'm impressed with the responsiveness of Benchmark's emails. People generally tend to open their emails on their phones first and go back to them later on when using a computer. This feature is great since your email campaign design won't be affected by your subscribers' devices.
- Schedule emails for different time zones:If you are a business with readers or customers worldwide, you will be impressed with this feature. You can schedule emails for different time zones, which means your overseas clients won't receive an email at 4 a.m.
- HTML available:Benchmark offers three different editors: drag & drop, plain text, and a code editor. With the code editor, you can import email templates that you designed yourself or purchased from a different provider by including the HTML code into Benchmark's software.
- Alarming deliverability rates:Benchmark has improved slightly in this area, but the deliverability rates have been quite concerning over the past few years. Currently, the rate is 1%, which is bad compared to other similar email marketing software.
- Server issues:I have found some reviews online complaining about the software having occasional server issues, which have led to emails taking a long time to show in subscribers' inboxes. This can be a problem when you have scheduled an email for a specific time that includes a time-sensitive promotion.
- Limited automation:Automation is offered with their free plan, but it's very basic compared to other software with similar features. If you want more sophisticated automation, you will have to upgrade to the pro plan, and that can become quite expensive depending on the number of subscribers you have.
Who is Benchmark Email Good for?
If you need a vast amount of information- Benchmark offers an extensive library filled with tutorials to help you create a successful email marketing campaign. They also provide live support through email, chat and phone. I was pretty impressed with the reviews online, saying that support got back to them quickly.
If you are looking for a variety of templates- A few of the email marketing software's I have come across have minimal templates where Benchmark offers over 500 industry-specific templates and the ability to import HTML templates. The templates are also responsive across different devices.
If you want an A/B testing feature- Benchmark allows you to split-test various campaigns on the same segmented list, helping you choose the best performing campaign.
Benchmark Email is not recommended for:
If you want advanced features- Benchmark is a great tool, but its features are pretty basic. You can get other email marketing softwares at the same price with advanced automation.
Looking for an affordable plan- If your contact list stays small, you will significantly benefit from their plans. On the other hand, if you want to focus heavily on lead capturing, you will start paying a premium price for a more extensive subscriber list.
If the deliverability rates don't bother you- An email marketing campaign is useless if the emails don't land up in your customers' inboxes, but Benchmark has seen improvements in their deliverability rates.
Key Features and Workflows
Let's have a look at the key features and workflows for Benchmark Email Software.
Creating Emails and Campaigns
As an email marketing platform, one of the most notable things I noticed about Benchmark Email is how it was designed to be easy to use for creating email campaigns. From creating the emails to sending them out, it was surprisingly easy.
- Emails Sent/Opened and Links Clicked– Although it’s designed for ease of use, Benchmark Email offers a comprehensive look into your customized email campaign. It features a detailed graph and statistics of the emails sent, opened and links clicked, among other things, to show how well your campaign is doing. This allows you to adjust your marketing strategy accordingly to become more effective. You can sort the reports by date or by the recipient.
- Deliverability Rate and Delivery by Time Zone– To make your email marketing campaign as successful as possible, it needs to reach your targeted audience. Benchmark Email has an efficient and effective system of checking your emails for potential spam flags to ensure it reaches your audience, giving them an exceptional deliverability rate. Benchmark also allows you to schedule the time of sending your emails and the time zone that’s most convenient for your followers.
- Creating and Importing Email Lists– The free plan allows you to create an email list by importing from an Excel, CSV, or TXT file; copying and pasting from a document; adding each email address manually one by one, or using other tools to import your contacts. If you want to create a more targeted email list, it requires you to subscribe to the paid version, Benchmark Pro.
BenchmarkEmail makes it very easy to add or import contacts to your lists. To create a list, you will start by navigating to the “Contacts” section on the left-hand menu.
After this, choose to create a new list. You will then have the option to choose between two options: creating a regular list or a targeted list. For this example, I selected the “Regular List” option, which is the default selection.
If you have email addresses that are already collected, you can easily import them into Benchmark by selecting “Import From A File” and then clicking “Next”.
You then have to name your list and upload your file.
If you are new to email marketing, you may not have contacts collected already so here is how to create a list without pre-existing contacts. Instead of choosing to import a file, you will choose to Manually add one by one.
You will name your list and then you will be able to add your contacts. Add in your email address and select “Add Contact”.
After this, you can preview your contacts by selecting the arrow in the top left corner that will take you back to “Contacts”.
- Split Tests and A/B Tests– Another great feature of Benchmark Email is that it allows to compare email campaigns to see which one will yield more favorable results. With these features, you can compare the probable performance of up to 3 separate email campaigns and test delivery times to see which campaign is the best and will be sent automatically to your subscribers.
- Personalization – Benchmark allows you to establish your brand’s unique campaign look through customization. From adding images and putting your own unique twist to the pre-existing template, all of these have been made readily available and easy to use with their drag-and-drop email designer. Additionally, you can divide your contacts and send different types of emails to various groups. For those who prefer their own layout, there’s also an option to store and use your own design and templates.
Benchmark Reporting and Analysis (Rated: 4/5)
Benchmark offers a simple analysis system, which is effective in tracking your campaign’s performance. Benchmark earns a score of 4.
Monitoring your campaign’s progress is part of an effective email marketing campaign. Benchmark offers a simple yet sophisticated system for tracking and analyzing the progress of each email marketing campaign you have. With it's easy to understand analytics, you can easily track and analyze your campaigns and adjust them accordingly.
- Engagement Reports (Email Open Rate and CR tracking)– Benchmark offers a comprehensive and straightforward system for viewing your campaign’s engagement rates and is updated in real-time, making it easy to find out if your campaign was a success.
- Heat Maps– Benchmark also features a geographic tracking that allows them to show you which parts of the globe your subscribers are and where your emails are opened. This will enable you to know in what countries your targeted market is in.
- Campaign Comparison Report– Benchmark also offers a handy and detailed tool that allows you to compare past and current email marketing campaigns with one another so you can see which ones were a success and derive inspiration from them for future campaigns.
- Segmentation– Another convenient feature of Benchmark is that it allows you to create customized lists so you can send personalized emails to each. This feature ensures that your emails are delivered in the most convenient time to targeted audience.
- Social Media Tracking– Benchmark also allows you to track subscribers who shared your email campaign on social media. With the prevalence of social media, this is a key aspect in determining your email campaign’s success. It also allows you to make tailor-made social media campaigns for those subscribers.
- ROI Analysis– With its detailed system for tracking activity from your email campaigns, Benchmark enables you to analyze which campaigns are effective and why they are so. This will make creating future campaigns more efficient, both in effort and cost.
Benchmark Integrations (Rated: 4/5)
The extensive integrations offered by Benchmark allow for effective marketing efforts and earned them a score of 4.
A successful email marketing campaign will depend on the integration of various software and databases. I was pleased to see that Benchmark offers integrations for over 300 services, ranging from payment methods like PayPal to social media apps like Facebook and Twitter. This allows you to tailor your campaign to reach your desired audience in an efficient and convenient manner.
- Google Analytics– Benchmark provides software integration of Google Analytics to allow you to track the activity of your subscribers when they click on a link from your email campaign. You can also analyze which pages on your site are popular by tracking where your site’s visitors go after clicking on an email link.
- API Integrations– With Benchmark’s improved feature for API integrations, there will be easy and instantaneous communication between your tools and applications. This will make creating email campaigns and reaching your audience more convenient and hassle-free.
- Ecommerce Software and Tools– Benchmark also offers integration with various popular eCommerce software solutions such as Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, and WooCommerce. By integrating these tools with your Benchmark account, you can create more targeted and effective email campaigns in the future.
- CRM Integration– Being able to manage your customers’ information via CRM tools is essential, especially as your business grows and develops. Benchmark offers integration with various CRM tools such as Zoho and Zapier to help you keep your business organized and streamlined.
- Social Media Integrations– Social media has been incorporated in every facet of our lives, including eCommerce. Benchmark understands this which is why they offer integrations for the most popular social media apps like Facebook, Twitter, and others to let your subscribers to share your email campaigns via their social media accounts.
- Apps– Nowadays, app integration is something essential for businesses and Benchmark makes it easy for clients to manage their campaigns and business through the availability of connecting to over 200 apps like Shopify and PieSync.
- Plugins– Another vital feature of the success of a business and its marketing campaigns is the availability and capacity of plugin integration. Benchmark makes it easy and convenient for business owners to integrate plugins for various sites like WordPress.
Benchmark Automation (Rated: 3/5)
The automation offered is great for managing your email marketing efforts, but the options are limited on the free plan. You will need to invest in order to take full advantage of the automation features. I give Benchmark a score of 3
Benchmark offers excellent automated features that make creating campaigns and managing your business easier. Benchmark’s automation system lets you create emails to be delivered based on specific user activities (such as opening a new account, adding items to a shopping cart, completing a sale, and more). It’s designed to be as easy to use as possible, so clients won’t have any problem when creating the specific marketing path, they want customers to follow.
Their automated features can also be used to build email drip campaigns and to send emails like greetings on your subscribers’ birthdays, increasing your customer engagement. There’s also an option for sending automated emails to targeted lists, ensuring you don’t spam all your subscribers with irrelevant content.
To test the Benchmark Automation feature, I created a basic automation sequence. To create an Automation, go to the “Automations” tab on the left-hand side, click on “Automations” and in the drop-down menu, select “Automation Lite”.
You will then need to choose to create a new automation. You will then choose between two automation types; “Contact List Automation” and “Email Engagement Automation”. For the review, I went with the Contact List Automation option.
After this, you can name your automation and add any necessary details that will help you remember what your automation is about.
After this, you will select the list you want to use, that when people subscribe to it, they will start receiving the emails in your automation.
After you have chosen your list, you will need to select your starting trigger. For this example, I used the “Send Emails When Contacts Are Added To A-List” option.
To add emails in your sequence, you will go to the “add new email” option.
When choosing the add new email option, you will be directed to the next section where you can add in your subject line, the optional preview text, and set the delivery time.
After this, you will be directed to the section where you can customize your email. You will need to select the type of email you would like to create. For this example, I chose the “Drag and Drop” editor.
The first step in the customization process is the layout of your email. You can either build an email from scratch or choose a layout from one of the many templates that Benchmark has to offer. I went with the “Recent News” template.
For the second step in the customization process, “Blocks”, you can customize each block in your template by clicking on “Show Blocks”.
To edit a block, click on the block and adjust the settings on the left-hand side. Once you are happy with the block, click “Save and Close”.
You can test your email once you are done by clicking on test in the bottom left corner and clicking “Send a test email”.
Once you are happy, click “Save and Next” where you will then be prompted to add in a valid physical address and select “Save and Close”.
You will then see your email displayed in your automation sequence. Repeat the steps above to create as many emails as you wish to have in your automation and once you are happy with that, click “Activate Automation”.
Design and Ease of Use (Rated: 4/5)
I was happy to see that Benchmark’s platform was designed so that even a beginner can use it without any complications. It pleases me to report that when it comes to design and utility, Benchmark Email receives a full score across the board.
Drag-and-Drop Interface – you can easily create a new email or campaign with Benchmark’s drag-and-drop designer, which lets you build great-looking pages even if you’re not a design expert.
I tested the drag and drop editor by creating a one-time email. To send a one-time email, you can go to the “Email” option on the left-hand side. Click on “Emails” and in the drop-down menu, select “Emails”.
You will have the option to create a new email. Click on the “create new email” option and you will be directed to a page with two options. You can choose between a regular email or an RSS email. For this review, I chose to create a regular email.
Next, you will be displayed with options to design your email. I chose the drag and drop editor. After you have named your email, you can edit the settings for your email. You can go down the rows and add in the list, your information, subject line, etc. Then at the bottom where it says “Design”, click on “Design Email”.
To customize your email, you will use the drag and drop editor that can be seen in the Automation section.
When you are happy with the way your email looks, you can preview it, and click on “save & next”. This will take you to where you fill in details such as your address and more.
After you have added your address, you will be taken back to the settings screen and you can either choose to send the email now or schedule it for Benchmark to send later.
Landing Page Creator – Benchmark’s paid subscriptions allow you to access their landing page creator to build landing pages for each campaign that are relevant and effective conversion tools.
Email Templates – Benchmark also offers free HTML templates with various themes for their clients who want a quick but organized design for their email campaigns. With these, you can create a streamlined email marketing campaign even without design experience.
Sign-up Forms within Newsletter Tool – Sign-up forms are a great way to build your contact list database and expand your brand’s reach. Benchmark has easy-to-create sign-up forms. They operate in a strict “opt-in, opt-out” process so clients will need to agree to receive your emails.
I found it very easy to create a sign-up form with Benchmark. All you have to do is to go to the “Contacts” section on the left-hand menu, and in the drop-down menu, select “Signup Forms”.
Click on the “Create New Sign Up Form” option and select the type of form you would like to use. For this example, I selected “Pop Up Form”.
Next, you will name your sign-up form and select the list you wish to add your contacts to when they opt-in on your sign-up form and then click “Save and Next”.
After this, it is time to edit your sign-up form and customize it. To edit the text on your form, simply click on the text and you can type in what you want to say and change the font and other settings directly on the left-hand side.
To add an image, click on the image icon and you can upload an image or utilize Benchmark Email stock resources.
To edit your input fields, click on the field and select the information you would like to collect, and then you can also select “Appearance” to edit the design.
Once you are done customizing your form, check out your “Opt-In Settings” in the top left corner. Once you have confirmed your settings, click “Save”.
To preview your sign-up form, add your domain and then select “Preview”. After that, click “Save and Publish”.
You will then be prompted to a window where you will be given the code that you can copy onto your website. Copy the code and add it to your website.
Benchmark Deliverability (Rated: 3/5)
The deliverability rates have been alarmingly low, and despite efforts to improve, still only score Benchmark a 3.
Benchmark’s deliverability rates have been of concern for a while now, with a deliverability rate of 1%, despite the existence of features such as time zone scheduling and a system for checking your emails for potential spam flags. These features have done little to improve the deliverability rate.
Benchmark Pricing (Rated: 4/5)
The pricing of Benchmark is competitive, with a free plan that offers limited, but effective, features, and so I give them a score of 4.
Benchmark offers a free, pro and enterprise plan. Their free plan consists of unlimited contacts and 250 emails per month with limited features excluding landing pages, advanced segmentation, and behavior-based emails. The pro plans price changes when adding more contacts, while the enterprise plan offers a few additional features, including email white labeling and dedicated IP.
Cancellation/ Refund Policy
They do not offer any refunds, but it is quick and easy to cancel your plan since you get charged on a month-to-month basis. You won't get charged for the following month as long as you cancel before your next renewal date. Benchmark offers a live chat option that will contact a representative who will assist you through the cancelation process.
Benchmark Customer Service (Rated: 5/5)
The support offered by Benchmark gives you access whenever you might need it and provides quick responses, scoring a 5.
Benchmark offers excellent customer service for both free and pro subscribers. Their customer support is available via phone and live chat support.
The company’s agents are available to help you around the clock, so you can always find answers even in an emergency.
Aside from this, they also feature an extensive FAQ section that answers the most frequently asked questions by their clients, eliminating the need to contact them for the more common problems.
You can call them at:
Switzerland (+41) 43-508-4676
UK (+44) 20-3695-2266
You may also contact them via their email form and live chat support which can be found on their website.
Constant Contact: You can build an entire online store from within the software without purchasing additional software like Shopify or WooCommerce. Constant Contact charges a premium price. You will get 500 contacts with their cheapest plan with Sendinblue, they offer a lifetime free plan with unlimited subscribers.
Mailerlite: This is beginner-friendly software that is a lot more affordable than Sendinblue. They offer you the ability to create customer surveys where Sendinblue does not. Mailerlite provides a site builder tool that you can use to build an entire website, and they have many different landing page templates.
Omnisend: This is an excellent software for eCommerce businesses as it integrates with all of the top eCommerce platforms. Omnisend offers various templates for your online store, including abandon cart, cross-selling, follow-ups, customer reactivation, and transactional emails.
After exploring its features, I have found an email marketing software solution that offers everything a small business owner needs to develop their business and improve its overall efficiency.
From easy-to-use email designing suite to competitive pricing for each type of subscription, Benchmark Email is a valuable email marketing software tool for your business in terms of function, accessibility, and pricing.
What I Liked About Benchmark Email
The user interface is straightforward and easy to navigate, making it convenient for those who are new to email marketing tools to create personalized and effective marketing campaigns. Additionally, it offers comprehensive and well-organized tools like reports and templates that allow you to have an easier time creating email campaigns and having a deeper understanding of what works and what doesn’t.
What I Didn’t Like About Benchmark Email
Although Benchmark has a lot of useful tools to make creating email campaigns a breeze, most of it is only available with a paid subscription to their service. However, despite the need for a paid subscription, the features they do offer are worth every penny. With a Benchmark Pro subscription, you will have all the tools you need for an effective and fully customizable email marketing campaign at your disposal.