Nowadays we cannot just send an email to 100s of contact or send 1000s of emails to different people because of limits on your server:
- Limited number of contacts that an email can be sent to in one email
- Maximum number of emails per hour/day from your server
- Your server could be put on a block list for send lots of unsolicited emails
- Your server does not have a good reputation (used for SPAM analysis) or is already on a block list
- Your SMTP service provider (usually for webhost) will not allow bulk emails to be sent as a policy
So how do all the big guys send emails to lots of people and not get blocked by my server?
- Transactional Email Services
- They have their own dedicated server and some IT staff looking after it
Transactional Email Services
Transactional Email Services are basically SMTP servers that are provided for you to use to send bulk emails without getting your email server on a block list and to get around any of the limitations mentioned above. Transactional Emails are normal emails, they do not have any per email tracking in them or anything you can use for analytics above and beyond what you put in the email yourself (ie links with tracking in them, but this would not be email specific but the same for all of the emails sent in that batch).
There are free and paid services but they work the same. Once you have signed up you can get their SMTP server details and replace the SMTP server details you are using with those and just send emails like you would normally.
You can get away with using a Transactional Email server to send mass emails from your favourite email program if the list is not too large, at most i would say 50 but it is definately worth checking out the rules for the service you choose to use.
What can I use these SMTP servers with?
- Locally Installed campaign software
- For your normal email (Outlook/Thunderbird ....)
- Emails from your website platform (ie Magento/Prestashop/Wordpress/Joomla ...)
Why are Transaction Email Services better?
So i have explained that these services are better but why?
- Increases the probability your Marketing/Normal Emails will arrive at their recipient and when it does help it not go into the dreaded SPAM/JUNK folder
- Their servers are designed to send bulk emails so the normal limits from your hosting provider will not apply
- Their servers will have a good reputation
- SPAM companies know what the IP address of their servers are (this does not 100% guratee delivery but it definately helps)
- Using this service will prevent your email server from going on a block list for sending large amounts of emails
- The service providers put policies in place to make sure their clients do not SPAM people by monitor usage and activity.
- You cannot just signup for account and send 40,000 emails
- Over a period of time you are allowed to send more emails
- They verify you are a real person
- The servers are monitoreds to make sure they are not on block lists
- If you abuse the rules they will actively remove your account
Email Marketing Campaigns
This is a related topic to Transactional Email Service because the next logical step is to be able to analyse and track the mass emails you send out and on a per email basis. This would allow you to see who opend and read the email, who recieved the emails, which ones got bounced and then even track the behaviour of those people who follow the links in the email you sent.
These features require two things to handle all of the tracking:
- Transactional Email Server
- A Platform/Software to handle all of the tracking information
There are two ways of building one of these systems
- Email Marketing Services - These are usally paid services and and these companies provide the tracking platforms and they use their own Transactional Email Servers. You can get per email analytics with these online services and it is one of their main advantages, these services also manage your mailing lists so when someone unsubscribes they take care of that. I have not used these enough to be able to tell you how they work but mainly you create the email and the lists on their platform and send from there rather than your own computer. Most of the paid services offer a Free service but they are usually so crippled that it is utterly pointless to use them.
- Locally Based Campaign Software - This method would require that you have a Transaction Email Service (or your own dedicated server with a unique IP) in place that you can use as the SMTP server. You would create the email in the software you have installed and send from that program using the Transactional Email Server for the configured SMTP server. The analytics is defiantly limited but you can control the lists and emails locally without having to pay a subscription. You definately have to put more effort in when using this method but it is a cheaper option and preferable if you do not like the cloud.
Transaction Email Services
- Mandrill - Transactional Email from MailChimp - This is the best to use
- SendGrid - Email Delivery & Transactional Email Service
- AuthSMTP - Outgoing authenticated SMTP server and email relay service (solves most SMTP and email relay errors).
- SMTP2GO - Worldwide SMTP Service
- Amazon Simple Email Service (SES) - Cloud Based Email Services | AWS
- Email Delivery Service & Transactional Email | SparkPost
Email Marketing Services
- AWeber Email Marketing - Email Marketing Software
- SendGrid - Email Delivery & Transactional Email Service
- phpList.com - Deliver your message with the power of Open Source
- 10 stonking email marketing systems reviewed. : Webdistortion
- A Comparison of 16 Bulk Email Marketing Services | Karelia Software
- The Best Email Marketing Services of 2015 | Top Ten Reviews
Campaign / Bulk Email Software
- Big Mass Mailer
- Bulk Email Marketing Software √ Mass Mail Software √ Bulk Mailing Software
- Bulk Email Sender Software - Mass Mailer, Mass Email Sender. Atomic Bulk Mailing Software
- Bulk email software - mass email software | SendBlaster
- Email Marketing Studio - Free Bulk Email Software Download
- Bulk Mailer - Free Email Marketing Software
- Thunder Mailer – Mass Emailing Software
- GroupMail - Free group email and mass email newsletter software
- OpenEMM e-mail & marketing automation | SourceForge.net / OpenEMM | agnitas.de
- Five mostly free mass mailing applications - TechRepublic
- Free open source bulk email sender downloads | Free Downloads Center
- Free Open Source Mass Mailing Software downloads | Free Downloads Center
- List of best free, open source email list management software
- Windows Mailing List Servers Software - SourceForge.net
- Bulk email or Spam? How to Send Email Blasts and Newsletters and Avoid Blacklisting | Cyber City Inc.
- How to Install an SMTP Server in Joomla using Mandrill | Joomla Magazine
- How to send 40 thousand emails in a day | Thunder Mailer – Mass Emailing Software
- How to send a test email using Gmail | Thunder Mailer – Mass Emailing Software
- How To Send Mass Email Without Subscribing To The Likes Of Aweber or Mailchimp - Blog Marketing Academy
- SendGrid Deliverability Guide | SendGrid
- Testing your connectivity to Sendgrid's SMTP relay using Telnet – SendGrid Support
- Best Practices for Transactional Emails [Infographic] - SparkPost Blog