Sunday, April 19, 2015

Mailing List Managers


Requirements

Subscription form in my site which will collect emails and enable me to manage my mailing list with the following features:
  • Will have a nice form which I can tweak and insert into my HTML code to collect emails in my site
  • Have multiple groups of emails
  • Blast emails to any specific group
  • (Nice to Have) Will read RSS and send emails upon update of RSS
  • Will be able to drip emails for each subscriber according to the time on my list
  • User management (add / delete/ import / export etc)
  • (Nice to Have) eMail templates
  • (Nice to have) Nice backend GUI


Main Obstacle

Email provider might block me as a spammer

This obstacle can be worked around by having a good scheduling dripper etc (but this is only a partial solution).

Best solution is to have a provider (costs money) which will white list and drip the emails using the best intervals.


Paid solutions

aWeber - quite expensive, might be good for very large lists
MailChimp - Free for first 2000 subscribers (but some features are disabled)
MadMimi - Most simple paid solution, is totally free for first 100 subscribers


If I am going for a paid solution I would choose MadMimi for very small sites, for larger ones (more than 100 subscribers) i would choose MailChimp (for more than 2000 subscribers i would recheck).



Free Solutions

OpenEMM - Since 1999!, robust, and has nice GUI, but there is not a lot of development there. - Complicated installation (python + lots of configurations)
PHPList - Lots of updates, has an option for a hosted solution (1$ for 3000 subscribers ! ) - Easy install.


If I am going free i would pick PHPList.


Summary

  • For a very small site (less than 100 subscribers for the near future) i would begin with MadMimi
  • For a Medium site (A site which will won't get over 2000 subscribers in the long term) i would go with MailChimp. (unless I want full functionality like email dripping and then I will consider the 1$ of hosted phpList)
  • For a large site (will surpass the 2000 subscribers) i would go with MadMimi as it has the best prices (yes, better even than phplist)
  • Please note than for no site I will go with a free solution as the blacklisting of mail providers is a big issue!  (and the paid software has much much nicer graphics  :-)   )

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