October 8, 2019

GetResponse Review

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GetResponse offers email marketing features, but at a cost. Is it worth it? Read this review to learn the pros and cons.

In recent years, however, GetResponse has evolved to become an all-in-one marketing solution. They now also provide things like webinar hosting, landing pages, and some CRM functions.

Is GetResponse the right email marketing service for you? Read on to find out.

GETRESPONSE PROS AND CONS

Pros

  • Affordable for beginners (cheapest plan only costs $15/month)

  • Has comprehensive features at higher tiered plans (Autofunnel, Marketing Automation, etc.)

  • Easy to use (drag-and-drop newsletter designing) with over 500 templates to choose from

  • Autofunnel feature is useful for those who want a one-stop solution for their marketing

  • Sends responsive emails and allows you to preview smartphone versions of your e-newsletters easily

  • All plans include a landing page creator

  • Free trial period for 30 days without needing to enter credit card details

Cons

  • Some advanced features not strong enough to be stand-alone products (like CRM)

  • High monthly cost for large mailing lists and advanced features

  • Plenty of templates, but few good quality ones

  • Few responsive email templates (only 30)

  • Bad user experience for some features

  • Starter package limited to only 1,000 emails list

WHAT IS GETRESPONSE?

In a nutshell, GetResponse is an email marketing service. If you have an online business, you'll probably be interested in GetResponse's services.

Here's what GetResponse can do for you:

  • Create newsletters for your subscribers
  • Set up autoresponders to automate emails to your subscribers
  • Import and host a mailing list and capture data onto it
  • Show statistics like open rate, click-through, forwards, etc.

However, GetResponse recently expanded their services. They now include webinar hosting, automated sales funnels, and some CRM (Customer Relationship Management).

This makes GetResponse more advanced than some of its competitors. It's becoming an all-in-one marketing solution.

GetResponse has been around since 1998. They claim to have more than 350,000 individuals and businesses using their services.

HOW DOES GETRESPONSE WORK?

To get started with GetResponse, you'd need to sign up with one of their plans. They currently offer 4 plans with varying features.

Prices depend on the number of subscribers you'd be emailing, as well as your billing cycle.

You get an 18% discount for a year's subscription, and a 30% discount for 2 years. This is cheaper than most of their competitors.

For our comparison, we'll be using 1,000 subscribers (lowest rate) as the standard.

Bear in mind that prices jump to their most expensive from the 50,000–100,000 subscribers mark. It will cost you at least $450/month, even on their cheapest plan.

Here's a list of what GetResponse offers:

Basic (starts at $15/month)
Email marketing, unlimited landing pages, automation templates, forms, surveys, exit pop-ups, Facebook Ads, and 150 integrations.

Plus (starts at $49/month)
Everything in Basic plus autofunnel functions, webinars (max 100 attendees), sell e-products, simple CRM, 3 users.

Professional (starts at $99/month)
Everything in Plus as well as automation builder, contact scoring and tagging, webinars (max 300 attendees), webinar autofunnel, paid webinars, 5 users.

Enterprise (starts at $1,199/month)
Everything in Professional plus account manager, dedicated IP address, deliverability consulting, single sign-on (SSO), webinar (max 500 attendees), transactional emails, email campaign consulting.

For the Enterprise plan, the exact pricing varies depending on your requirements and list size. You'll have to get in touch with GetResponse to schedule a demo. They'll then talk to you about your needs and discuss pricing.

GETRESPONSE BASIC FEATURES

Looking at the list, you might be a little confused. You might be asking, what on earth is a webinar?

Don't worry, we'll go through the more advanced features later. But here are a list core features that all GetResponse's plans have:

  • You can import, grow, and host an email database
  • Wide range of email templates
  • Autoresponder functionality
  • Responsive email designs
  • Split testing
  • In-depth reporting
  • RSS/blog-to-email functionality
  • Comprehensive segmentation options
  • Social sharing tools

We'll go through them in detail so you have a better idea of what they are.

E-NEWSLETTER TEMPLATES

GetResponse has many e-newsletter templates to choose from. There are over 500 templates for categories such as online marketing, fitness and wellness, travel, online publishing, etc.

You won't have a problem finding a template which suits your business and product. Once chosen, you can edit it using the drag-and-drop editor. You can even create your own email template using HTML code.

Although there are many templates, they're not as beautiful as some of their competitors. Also, their RSS-to-email applications are limited to only 30 templates.

Still, if you don't like their templates, you can always buy one from a third party (like Theme Forest). You could also code your own.

AUTORESPONDERS

Simply put, autoresponders are e-newsletters that are automatically delivered.

For example, you can set autoresponders to send a welcome email as soon as a user subscribes to your list. Then a week later, you can send them a discount coupon. After a month, you can introduce your special members-only program.

GetResponse's autoresponder function is one of its key selling points. It's quite advanced compared to its competitors.

You can set the autoresponder to be time-based or action-based. Time-based is pretty much what we described earlier.

Action-based depends on how the user interacts with your mailing list. For example, action-based messages can be triggered when a user:

  • Clicks a link
  • Opens an email
  • Changes contact preferences
  • Completes a purchase
  • Subscribes to a list
  • Changes user data
  • Has a birthday

In fact, GetResponse allows you to take this automation further. They call this feature their Marketing Automation.

Basically, Marketing Automation allows you create a workflow. You create a list of possible actions for GetResponse based on user behavior.

For example, did the user click link A? Then send them a newsletter with product X. Did they open offer B? Send them a newsletter with offer Y.

This feature is quite advanced for an autoresponder. It lets you customize your user's experience to get the best possible outcome.

However, the Marketing Automation feature only comes with the Professional plan or higher.

RESPONSIVE EMAIL DESIGNS

This feature simply means that GetResponse automatically adjusts your e-newsletter's template to fit mobile.

You can click on the "mobile preview" button and instantly see what your newsletter would look like on a smartphone.

There's also an option to flip the smartphone preview to see what it would look like in either portrait or landscape mode.

SPLIT TESTING

Split testing (or A/B testing), is a great method for optimizing your email marketing campaigns. Basically, you send two versions of your newsletter to a small group of subscribers.

Based on the results (open, click-through rate, etc.), you pick the winning version and send that to the rest of your users.

Split testing lets you change different elements of your newsletter and find the best combination. You can also use this to test different elements of your website landing pages.

GetResponse's split testing feature is better than average. They allow you to split test up to FIVE different messages against each other. Other competitors offer that many messages only at a premium.

ANALYTICS AND REPORTING

GetResponse's analytics are comprehensive. You have all the basics—open rate, click-through, unsubscribe rates, etc. However, they also offer other more advanced statistics.

For example, their "one-click segmentation" feature lets you see who didn't engage with your emails. You can put them in a new segment of users and try again. But this time, with a different version of your e-newsletter.

There's also "metrics over time," which lets you see when your subscribers are most active. You can time your newsletters to release during that time.

Their email ROI feature lets you add tracking codes to your post-sales page on your site. It tells you whether your email campaigns are actually driving sales. You can then work out your return on investment in email marketing.

GetResponse's analytics also provides individual information. You can click on your subscribers and see personal details about their account.

This can be information like where they signed up from, where they're located, and which emails they opened previously. This lets you customize your product to your customers.

Finally, you can also compare your e-newsletter performances. You can see which newsletter has been more effective and use them for future campaigns.

Other services offer similar features, but GetResponse's analytics is still one of the most detailed.

BLOG/RSS-TO-EMAIL

GetResponse has a feature called RSS-to-email. Basically, whenever you update your site, it also updates your RSS feed.

GetResponse's RSS-to-email templates then pull this RSS information and compile them into an e-newsletter.

Whether you're adding events, blog posts, or promotions, all that automatically becomes an e-newsletter. You can then choose to send it instantly or space them out in daily, weekly, or monthly intervals.

The advantage of these RSS-to-email feeds is that it's automatic. You won't need to spend time writing the newsletter. You can spend that time developing your business or building content instead.

GetResponse only has about 30 RSS-to-email templates currently. It's a small selection compared to their 500 regular newsletter templates. Still, it's nice to know that they offer this feature.

SEGMENTATION OPTIONS

GetResponse allows you to customize your mailing options according to your users. You can send your mails to different segments of users.

In other words, you can group certain users who share a common trait. This could be things like their location or age, for instance.

Or you can also group them according to behavior, like when they signed up or their last message date. Basically, you can segment them any way you like.

Once you've grouped them into segments, you can customize your newsletter for each segment. Or you can also create a newsletter and send them to multiple segments.

This flexibility is what makes GetResponse's segmentation options great. While other competitors also offer this option, it usually comes at a premium.

SOCIAL SHARING TOOLS

Social sharing tools allow you to add social sharing buttons in your e-newsletters. Basically, it lets your users share content in your e-newsletter with just one click.

It doesn't stop there—whenever they share your content, GetResponse captures that data. It records things like reader reactions, tweets, likes, pins, +1s, and LinkedIn shares, as well as retweets, re-likes and FB comments.

It then compiles this information and converts it to easy-to-read graphs and charts. This lets you see the overall engagement with each social channel.

This information can be crucial for email marketers. It allows them to identify and target social networks with the most engagement. They can then optimize future marketing campaigns for these channels.

Those are all the features you'll get from any of GetResponse's plans. Now we'll look at some of the more advanced features.

GetResponse Advanced Features

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These are features available only on the Plus plans or higher. Read on to find out what other features GetResponse has.

AUTOFUNNEL

GetResponse's Autofunnel feature is what makes it stand out. It transforms GetResponse from an email marketing platform to an e-commerce platform.

But what is the Autofunnel feature exactly?

The basic idea of an autofunnel is that it's a series of automated steps. These steps convert people who have never heard of your business into your customers.

Think of it like a salesperson. A traditional salesperson would go out, get leads, talk with potential clients, and eventually close a sale.

Autofunnels do the same thing. Only instead of a human doing all those steps, it's GetResponse. It uses social media, landing pages, email marketing, and e-commerce tools to do it.

Here's an example of how GetResponse's autofunnel feature might work.

  1. Create a product catalogue
  2. Create and run Facebook ad campaigns
  3. Create landing pages
  4. Add subscribers to an autoresponder cycle
  5. Drive users to sales pages
  6. Take payment for products
  7. Send abandoned cart emails

All these steps can be done inside GetResponse without needing external apps or services. The only exception is the payment processor—you may need to use apps like PayPal or Stripe.

Having said that, the autofunnel feature isn't exclusive. You can still use third-party platforms like Shopify, BigCommerce, and Etsy.

The autofunnel feature is only available on the Plus plan or higher.

WEBINARS

Webinars can be great for online businesses. They can help establish brand trust and authority. They can also generate high-quality leads.

But before we dive into it—what's a webinar?

To put it simply, a webinar is an online conference. A host would do a talk or presentation to an online audience. In other words, a webinar is exactly like a real-life conference. Except that everything takes place on the internet.

GetResponse offers a webinar service, setting them apart from their competitors. It's also affordable compared to other providers.

You can host up to 500 attendees, depending on your plan.

If you plan on using webinar, then GetResponse is a great choice. Webinars can be a great tool for your business, especially when you use it with CRM.

CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP MANAGER (CRM)

When someone talks about CRM, they're usually referring to a CRM system. It's a tool which helps with contact management, sales management, productivity, and more.

GetResponse has a CRM tool too. It does things like create sales pipelines, adding contacts to them, and tracking the contact's activity.

However, GetResponse has also expanded their CRM tool to integrate with their email marketing. You can now add users to a CRM pipeline based on their activity history.

Depending on which stage they are in the pipeline, you can trigger certain autoresponders too.

Here's an example of what their CRM model looks like:

You can add a contact to a certain stage of a sales pipeline, based on which form they completed. You then send them an automated email, which is tailored for them several days later.

Depending on their action (e.g., what they opened or clicked on), you could move them to another stage of the pipeline. At this stage, they might respond better to a webinar, for example.

This is one of GetResponse's more advanced features. You have to pay a premium with other providers for the same service.

Still, GetResponse's CRM feature isn't good enough as a stand-alone product yet. It still has a few features missing.

For one thing, there is no email activity tracking. Other CRM packages lets you bcc a Dropbox email address to keep a collection of the communication with the client. You can't do this with GetResponse. There's no easy way to send one-to-one emails to leads or clients either.

Other things also negatively affect user experience. You can't view a client's activity history within a deal pipeline, for example. You also can't add deals to a pipeline directly.

Because of this, you're better off considering their CRM function as an extra.

Still, it's an impressive feature. If done right, it can be a great tool in your email marketing arsenal.

LANDING PAGES

Landing pages are stand-alone web pages. It's designed to get the user to do only one thing—the call to action (CTA).

This can be anything from subscribing to a program or following a social media account.

As opposed to a cluttered website, landing pages are clean. They have clear information and simple directions. This results in a much higher conversion rate compared to a regular website.

GetResponse has a landing page creator which lets you design your own landing page. It's also mobile-friendly.

However, it's only available for the Plus plans or higher. But if you're on the Basic plan, you can include it as an add-on.

E-COMMERCE TOOLS

If you're running an online business, then GetResponse's e-commerce tools may be useful. Here are some of the services they offer:

Stores and Products
You can integrate your online store with GetResponse and populate your product inventory in your account. Then you can promote your products directly in your landing pages and emails.

Create a Product Library
You can create a store and add the products you want to sell. This can be physical products, online courses and trainings, e-books and downloads, and other services.

Abandoned Carts
You can also automatically send an email to users who abandon their carts. This allows you to potentially recapture lost sales.

There are plenty of other features with their e-commerce tools. However, these are available only in their Plus plan or higher.

NUMBER OF USERS

GetResponse's Basic plan only allows for one user account. The Plus plan allows for 3 users, while the Professional has 5.

The highest plan, Enterprise, lets you have 10 users.

If you have a team running your online marketing campaigns, you may need additional user accounts.

BOTTOM LINE

GetResponse is a great choice for email marketers because of its flexibility. If you don't need advanced features, you can simply subscribe to its Basic plan. For a minimal fee, you'll have all the basics, like email marketing, autoresponders, and analytics.

However, if you've got a bigger budget, then GetResponse offers a lot more. Things like their Marketing Automation and Autofunnel features can massively help your business.

The downside is that some of their more advanced features, like CRM, are still bogged down by poor design. Also, their RSS-to-email template options are limited.

Finally, their pricing structure can also be confusing. It's best to have a chat with their customer service before subscribing. You want to pay only for what you need.

If money isn't a problem, then GetResponse can be a great tool for your email marketing and online business. Just make sure you fully understand its features before signing up.

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