An email autoresponder is the software program that takes over as soon as one of your potential customers opts in to receive your newsletter, information or products/services. As the name hints, it will respond automatically, sending the requested information, and whatever else you tell it to.
when it comes to making the purchase of an email autoresponder, there are quite a few options to choose from. You could even decide not to purchase one but instead use one of the many free autoresponders available on the web.
Some free autoresponders include FreeAutoBot, SendFree, GetResponse, and Responders.net. Keep in mind, however, that the free autoresponders don’t offer many necessary features and they often make their money by sending out advertisements with your outgoing emails.
These can be a good place to start if you are just starting to build your list but later on, you will definitely want to try a more effective service.
One of the most highly reputable services on the web today is Aweber which offers a free 30-day trial. It’s important to note that Aweber does require the double-opt-in before you can send your list programmed emails.
This basically means that your leads will opt-in once to whatever form you have on your website, blog, lead capture page, etc. and then Aweber will send out yet another “permission confirmation” to the opt-in email address.
There are pros and cons to the double opt-in. The pros are that you retain higher quality leads who are definitely interested in what you have to offer and your emails will not be considered spam. The con is that you will lose leads this way because not everyone will re-confirm.
Pricing with Aweber starts at $19/month and is based on the total number of subscribers you obtain. Aweber also offers an affiliate program so you can make money when you refer others to them.
IContact offers the best starting rate at $9.00 per month, but this only includes 250 subscribers. The price goes up from there. Depending on your viewpoint, an advantage of IContact might be that it doesn’t require you to use the double-opt-in feature.
Traffic Wave also offers a 30-day test drive period. This service costs $17.95, which is fixed regardless of how many subscribers you have. The price also includes unlimited autoresponders and click track reporting.
You also get unlimited ad trackers, a WYSWYG Editor, a lead generation page, several pre-built email templates and step by step tutorials to get you up and running quickly. Traffic Wave also offers a 10 tier affiliate program – you get paid commissions ten levels deep by promoting their service. Traffic Wave is also a double opt-in service.
These are just some popular choices of the many email autoresponders available to you. You can also check out GetResponse (at the paid level), Oprius (another double-opt-in service), and StreamSend, all of which offer free trial periods.