Constant Contact Review: email marketing and email news letter service

By Partho, Gaea News Network
Friday, October 9, 2009

constantcontactAfter our stint with Aweber, we decided to review another leading email marketing and email news letter service, Constant Contact. We picked specifically Constant Contact for its comprehensive feature set. The email marketing service provides professional email templates, and an easy to use interface that can be easily handles by beginners and unskilled users.  It also offers high-impact email newsletters and promotions to carry out email marketing campaigns. Its 60 day free trial period and above average customersupport makes it an outstanding email marketing program. To find out more let’s dig into working and features of Constant Contact.

Email Campaign

Constant Contact allows you to customize the email using one of the templates or copy and paste your pre-made HTML source code into your email.  Constanct contact offers more than 400 customizable templates. Advanced users can manipulate the web code. They can use XHTML or HTML to achieve a desired look and feel.

The service allows a wide range of tools that include

  • Email newsletters
  • Event templates
  • Seasonal templates
  • Templates by industry
  • Multi-lingual templates

The email services also includes that ability to insert images and links option, survey link option, coupon link, contact details, images, Amazon and PayPal codes, and special characters. In addition, the PayPal click-to-buy option and Amazon ASIN promotion option are quite handy for email campaign.

constantcontact

Autoresponder

Email autoresponder makes it easy to manage new subscribers. It’s easy to use feature allows you to create a series of email that is automatically sent to the new customers on a fixed schedule. The feature allows you to set up a sequence of emails. Further, you can designate the list for new sign ups or segmented list to receive the sequence of Autoresponder emails.

Email Delivery

Although Constant Contact offers a better interface, but it’s deliverability is not as efficient as other services. The paid subscriptions may get blocked after being blacklisted.

Email campaign reporting

Constant Contact allows you to see the ones who opened your email address and those who clicked on what links within your emails. You can export those email addresses to a new interest category.

Email Reporting

Constant contact  email reports include bounces, bounced percent, complaints, opt-outs, click-throughs, click-through percent, forwards and more.

Pros

  • Constant Contact offers an extended free trial period of 60 days. That means you get enough time to evaluate the program
  • With more than 400 templates the library Constant Contact offers one of the largest template libraries
  • Even the novice could learn to design their own HTML newsletters and customizing their templates
  • Easy to import existing addresses SafeUnsubscribe and SafeSubscribeSM application for better email. Constant Contact accepts your email addresses in 3 file formats -  .txt , .csv and .xls.
  • Anti spam policy is quite impressive. Constant Contact monitors large imported list activity to keep spammers out of their servers. Constant Contact cannot be used with purchased, rented, or illegally obtained emailing lists
  • The list management feature offers an impressive list segmentation.
  • An intuitive email wizard allows easy customization of templates with the step-by-step prompts
  • SPAM compliance checker

Cons

  • Constant Contact is overpriced than some of the other similar service providers. For email archives and images storage you need to offer additional charge per month.
  • It’s difficult to quit the services. You cannot drop your account online or via email. You need to call them to cancel your account.
  • It offers no WYSIWYG for working on HTML designs. You might only use the WYSIWYG editor when customizing the free templates. Constant Contact doesn’t offer much for the skilled email campaigners.
  • You can create and use just one sign up form for your website per account. This could be a major limitation for those who offer more than one newsletter to subscribe to and want different sign-up sheets.

Conclusion

Constant Contact could be a better choice for those individuals or companies that are looking for additional features. It edges over most email marketing services for its templates, multi-lingual templates, premium image hosting and email archiving. Although its price is much discussed issue, Constant Contact can still boast of its 60 day free trial period. However, Constant Contact needs to improve upon its deliverability; working out a solution with leading ISPs and blacklists. They should also focus on reporting features.

Discussion

Bob
June 16, 2010: 1:38 am

Nice review about Constant Contact.

Maybe you can do one about MailHills, it is very cheap alternative to email services.


Lori
June 10, 2010: 10:18 am

Worth giving Pinpointe (http://www.pinpointe.com) a look. Here are some highlights of the email marketing service:
-Free and easy to create surveys and dynamic content
-Enhanced support – now offers live chat for customers over $99 per month
-Dedicated phone support for Enterprise customers/customers sending high volume of email
-Same low all inclusive price with month-to-month option
-Includes free live/online training session with a service representative
-Drag-and-Drop surveys as offered by Survey Monkey

April 29, 2010: 3:08 pm

Thanks for the review!


Carol
March 27, 2010: 10:34 am

Not happy at all with Constant Contact for a number of reasons, too many to go into detail here on this post. And since I prepaid for 6 mos, they won’t refund my money. So, I’m stuck here another 4.5 months with a useless resource. An expensive lesson but I’ll be using another program asap.

February 10, 2010: 11:50 am

Good thoughts on Constant Contact.

Of course you want deliverability and quality features, but a LOT of people are interesting in a potentially lucrative affiliate plan as well.

That’s why I chose the email marketing product that I use every day. I’m quite happy with it!

~Rusty


Beeber
January 24, 2010: 9:28 am

Hi,
This was informative, thank you. I wish you might do an article COMPARING some email marketing webistes/services/software. we are with iContact and would love to see that compared with others. They are easy - but overloaded right now and the iste is sluggish - not good for deadlines, which we writers all have!
Thanks Beeber

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