If you’ve found this page, it’s because you’re
A) Serious about building or growing your online business, and
B) Wanting to pick the best auto responder for you needs
Email marketing is a serious part of your business, that you need to need to start off the right way. If you’ve realized that having an auto-responder will build your business, than good for you! You’re way ahead of most people
Let’s look at our two options. To be honest, there are a ton of possibilities, from 1Shoppingcart to iContact, to Infusionsoft.
Let’s face it; those aren’t worth your time. They’re either for people who want every aspect of their marketing tied to one company (just try to switch, I dare you), or simply enjoy paying a lot.
The truth about email marketing is that it should be cheap, and it should be easy.
This doesn’t mean it should be free. Anything that you don’t have to pay anything for will prove to be very expensive when you see all your lost profits from shoddy service or from giving your customers ads they don’t want.
If you’re starting your internet business, 30 dollars should be all you need to get started. Yes, you can spend more if you’re ready, and that’s great. If you already have a large list you want to import, both services can accommodate you for an adjusted fee. Just don’t’ fall into the new entrepreneur trap of “After I start my email list, I’ll have 15,000 subscribers within a month so I need to have every feature known to man.” But if you’re sending out to a list of under 5000, why go all nuts in the beginning?
Disclaimer: I get a tiny commission from you buying after reading this article. Does this affect my review? No, because I have a deal with BOTH services for the same affiliate percentage. So if there’s any bias to be found, just assume I was lying about iContact and Infusionsoft before. I’m not getting paid if you click those. Or am I? You decide, true believer!
Let me start out by saying that both services are excellent. I’ve worked as an online marketing manager for four years and have used both services. GetResponse I’ve used more extensively, but that was before they did their “stop the presses!” upgrade where they added a lot of new features. I went back to investigate the improvements and did a re-evaluation of how they measure up to Aweber now.
Let’s look at how the two compare:
Both GetResponse and Aweber offer user-friendly interfaces to create emails for your list, including broadcasts, follow-ups, and tracking. If you’re new with email marketing, one of the cool things about using an autoresponder is that you can pre-set an amount of emails and schedule their delivery. When you see a website offering a “5 day E-course,” it means they usually have their autoresponder set for an email drip of “1 day after sign-up, 2 days after sign-up, 5 days, etc…
If you want, you could set up a years worth of emails in advance, and then just send a broadcast here and there when you’re having a special announcement or sale.
Both services also let you know if your email appears as “spammy” and likely to fall into your subscriber’s junk mail folder, or bounced altogether. You can see a SpamAssassin rating of what the likelihood is of you getting into your subscriber’s main inbox.
I found GetResponse to be a little easier to learn, but recently they’re getting complaints about how they moved things around in their interface. Aweber has gotten the most consistent reviews on the basic autoresponder functions.
I was really happy to hear that GetResponse finally added split-testing. This means that you can send different versions of your email out and see which has better open rates, click-thru’s, and sales.
Out of the two, GetResponse has a better split testing program. Aweber allows up to four different emails to be sent; GetResponse offers five. This isn’t just an attempt to “one-up”Aweber. Get response will also let you set a percentage of how much of your list you want to “experiment with” instead of sending your traditional emails, so you can effectively have six different versions going out at once.
Also, GetResponse lets you choose different times to send the emails out, for your tests. It’s often a struggle for internet marketers to decide when to broadcast, considering that the west coast subscribers will be in a different part of their day than those on the east coast when the email is sent. Aweber does not let you change the time up, at this point.
Bells & Whistles:
As of now, GetResponse offers an iPhone application, video email broadcasting, and a survey creator. These sound really cool, but keep in mind that you can integrate Aweber with third party video and survey creation services just fine. However, if you’re the type that will not order a pizza unless you can eat it off your iPhone screen, I guess GetResponse will be your obvious choice.
I’ll lay it out for you right here. Pricing is pretty much the same. Looking at both plans, GetResponse is SLIGHTLY cheaper, but you end up saving a max of four bucks a month. Is that worth giving up ANYTHING in service? I don’t think so. You should just pick the one you like the most.
Oh, and about buying multiple months in advance, don’t bother. I get a better commission if you buy a huge chunk of time at once, but I’m willing to give that up so you make the best choice for your business.
I did the math seeing how much you save by getting a longterm plan, and the savings are miniscule. If you buy using a quarterly plan, you save $2.77 a month. You smart saver, you! After two months, you’ll be able to buy a value meal at McDonalds. Adding up your savings after three months, and you can Go-Large on your soda and fries as well.
Oh, and if you buy using a YEAR’s worth of service, you can actually save $2.86 a month. No joke, that’s 9 cents more than the quarterly plan.
Now it’s a silly savings plan, but don’t let that turn you against either company. They lay it out right in front of you, and if you don’t do the math, that’s your own damn fault.
Now let’s look at the final verdict. I choose…
Bottom line, it has the best reputation, and most smart and successful internet marketers I know use it. I know great businesses using GetResponse, but they’ll often admit to me that if they had to do it over again, they’d pick Aweber. The features in GetResponse are definitely cool, but the reliable service, ready-to-help customer support, and long term split testing features make Aweber the way to go. Aweber also has a 30 day money-back guarantee, and your first month is just $1. Yes, you can get your dollar back, you cheap bastard.