Email Octopus in a nutshell
Multiple accounts and logins.
Segmentation and geo:
There’s a segmentation option, but not by geographical region.
No, but you can set these up manually.
No, covered as part of the free plan.
Means of use:
Desktop, mobile devices and tablets.
Good all rounder for any company engaging in email marketing.
Key features and workflows
Creating emails and campaigns
It’s very easy to get to grips with this software. Automation and template options are made clear at the outset, and you’ll find a good quality set of reporting tools at your disposal.
Emails sent/opened and links clicked
The software uses real-time analytics to give you open rates and click rates as they happen. You’ll also be able to see how many customers are unsubscribing and track your bounce rate. All of these metrics provide valuable insights on how well your campaign is going.
Deliverability rates and delivery by time zone
Email Octopus doesn’t disclose its average deliverability rates, but you’ll be able to track this statistic across your campaigns. It also provides a how-to article on improving your deliverability rates, and making sure your emails don’t end up in the spam folder.
Creating and importing email lists
You can import your contacts via a CSV file, add members manually, or collect subscribers via sign up forms. You can store email addresses and custom data on each contact; just make sure you create the fields in the right format for import. You’ll find instructions on how to do this via the help center.
Split tests and A/B testing
Email Octopus doesn’t offer any A/B testing options; instead, you’ll have to review your own campaign report analytics to figure out what’s gone well and what hasn’t.
You’ll find a decent range of customization options on offer here. You can add customer names to emails, insert images and make personalized offers based on buying habits.
Reporting and analysis
You’ll get access to real-time engagement statistics, as well as an end-of-campaign summary. These reports cover opened emails, clicked links, who unsubscribed, who marked your mail as spam, those who didn’t open, and those who opened but didn't click.
The reports don’t have as much detail as some of Email Octopus’s competitors, but you get enough information to see the strengths and weaknesses in your campaign. You’ll also find a number of helpful articles on the website that detail how you might improve your engagement and get more opens and clicks in the future.
There are no heat maps in the main reporting tool, but you can link Email Octopus to Google Analytics via a third party app. This will give you an idea of which areas and regions are engaging with your marketing campaign.
Campaign comparison report
There’s no campaign comparison feature with the software, but you’ll get an individual summary report at the end of each campaign. It’s not difficult to download the data on the different campaigns you want to compare and do the comparison manually.
Segmentation options are fully customizable, and you can create any custom field you’d like. You can divide your subscriber list into categories like gender, age, location, how long they've been subscribed, as well as by personal preferences.
The segments all depend on the type of data you collect when someone subscribes. If you’d like to add new segments, you can issue surveys and questionnaires at any time to get even more information on specific product preferences.
Social media tracking
While Email Octopus doesn’t have native integration with social media, you can connect to platforms like Facebook via a third party app. You can track and add subscribers who engage with your campaign through Facebook and target ads to users.
You won’t find a return on investment analysis tool here; this is something you’ll have to calculate for yourself based on the plan you’re on and how many campaigns you’ve issued.
Email Octopus doesn’t have any integrations of its own. Instead, you’ll need to go via Zapier, a third-party app provider, if you want to use any add-ons. Luckily, Zapier has about 500 integrations you can use with the platform, so you’re sure to find something useful. Bear in mind, though, that this might incur an additional cost to your core plan.
You can connect Google Analytics to Email Octopus very easily, and with no prior coding knowledge. You’ll be able to track who’s visiting your web pages and get additional statistics and reports on user activity.
The application programming interface (API) at Email Octopus allows external websites and applications to interact with your account. If you have the coding skills, you can also develop your own integrations using the API.
It’s possible to connect your Email Octopus account to quite a few different eCommerce tools like Shopify, Amazon Seller Central, and PayPal. The tools let you set up triggers that will update your subscriber list whenever you make a sale through these platforms. You’ll also get additional analytics to see which platforms are bringing the most traffic.
Easily connect to a number of popular CRM platforms like Redtail, Microsoft Dynamics and Agile. Any change made as a result of your email campaign, e.g. new subscribers or sales, will automatically be updated in your CRM tool, helping you manage your sales pipelines.
Social media integrations
You’re able to integrate most popular social media platforms and set triggers as a result of your campaigns. For example, if someone likes one of your marketing tweets, you can automatically add that user to a list of customers to target in the future.
You’ll find quite a few useful tools among the 500 apps on offer through Zapier. Some popular ones include adding newsletters, creating surveys, and live chat integration.
There are plugins to integrate Email Octopus into just about any type of website, including those developed using WordPress, Squarespace, WooCommerce, Wix, and Shopify.
The automation tool is easy to use, and you can set time based triggers or drip sequences to automate campaigns. Drip campaigns work on simple yes/no triggers, and you can pre-set all of these commands before your campaign starts. For example, you can set auto responses if someone opens your mail but doesn’t click a link, and have a different email template ready to go for those that do click links.
Design and ease of use
The platform has 11 email templates to choose from, and each one can be easily amended using the drag and drop editor. Everything is made as easy as possible, and there are some great looking designs on offer.
Drag and drop interface
The editor is simple to use and you can add in images, amend text, and drop in your logo. If you’re not happy with the interface, you can develop your own templates outside of the platform and upload them to the platform yourself.
Landing page creator
The only way to build landing pages is to sign up to a partner service offered by Carrd. It costs an extra $9 per month and has 20 landing page templates to choose from. These also use a drag and drop interface and are easy to edit.
The 11 templates on offer are sleek and modern-looking. Each one can be edited using the drag and drop interface and, if you have the coding skills, you can make more advanced changes directly via HTML.
Email Octopus pricing
Starter - Free
Pro - $20 per month
The service is provided in a sliding scale format above the $20 per month option. All of the features will remain the same, but you’ll pay an extra $10 to $15 per month for each additional block of 5,000 subscribers. The number of monthly emails will also scale accordingly; you’ll always be allowed to send 10 times the number of emails as you have subscribers.
You’ll find dozens of support articles and blogs via the help center that cover most major issues you might encounter with the platform. If you can’t find an answer to your question, you can also get in touch via live chat and email. Customers on the Pro plan will receive a priority response.
Email Octopus is affordable, reliable and has all of the features any small and medium sized business needs to run an effective email marketing campaign. The interface is easy to get to grips with, you’ll find decent automation options, and the templates are stylish and easy to edit.
Where the platform struggles is its lack of additional features. Other platforms offer more detailed reports, full A/B testing, and more complex segmentation. However, this shouldn’t put off most small business owners from trying it out.
What I liked about Email Octopus
- It’s inexpensive
- Good automation options
- Easy-to-use email editor
- Free plan available
- Wide range of third-party applications
What I didn’t like about Email Octopus
- Lacks A/B testing
- Segmentation is a little more limited than other platforms