Team TechRevel team set out to find the most reliable, simplest to use and cost effective marketing platform when we came across SendinBlue. Launched in 2012, SendinBlue has not only email marketing services on offer but also supports SMS campaigns. They are also proficiently helping businesses with what they call” transactional” emails such as password resets, order confirmation, and updates, and creating new accounts. This space, however, is clearly dominated by MailChimp, the oldest in the business and inevitably SendinBlue has created an offering which is directly comparable to MailChimp. Options like a free plan with limited features but absolutely no credit card commitment can be a boon for small businesses, even though it's priced package starts from as low as $7.37 for a month.
Let’s look at some of the critical aspects of any such service provider in the automated marketing space.
Cost and Features
Every package by SendinBlue can be used for unlimited contacts with various tiers of pricing that you can choose depending on the number of emails that have to be sent in a month. The free package starts with 9000 emails in a month and a level up from there; the Micro package is priced at $7.37 for a month with 40,000 emails, and then the Bronze package comes in for $39 per month with a limit of 60,000 emails. There are also silver, gold and atomic packages $66, $173 and $1946 for 120,000 emails, 350,000 emails, and 15 million emails respectively. Non enterprise users can also opt for annual plans.
Getting started with a subscriber list
Setting up the subscriber list on SendinBlue is sort of complex process. It begins with a declaration of how you got access to the database and a little lesson on the CAN SPAM Act compliance. List of subscribers can be imported or pasted. You can even add address manually. Then there is an option to blacklist any contacts who would have opted to be contacted using any other service instead of Email and SMS. There is, however, no way of adding custom columns even while adding contacts manually. This means if it is important for your business to know of a subscriber’s gender or birthday, you will have to keep adding a blank text field for that information. Segmentation of the list can be done quite quickly and ditto for exporting contacts.
Launching a campaign
This is relatively simple and works like clockwork. You need the campaign name, to begin with, subject text, sender’s name, and email. It is also possible to customize the email by addressing the receiver by their name. This option is present in advanced settings and so is using a customized unsubscribe page, tagging, attachment inclusion, embedding images, enabling a mirror link for the email to be viewed in the browser instead of the email client. From there you need to choose the template builder you wish to use- responsive design or HTML simple text. It may take longer if you select responsive tool, but it comes around.
Overall, our verdict is that SendinBlue is a helpful tool for marketers who want to optimize SMS along with email campaigns. It comes with the more features than you will need although the user interface definitely could use some upgrade. Transactional email facility is surely an added advantage for businesses who require a log in, especially e-commerce portals.