One of the first things you must consider even before adding the code for an email opt-in box on your web pages is the email service you should use to handle your autoresponders. There are many companies that can offer an excellent service, and they are not expensive, but you may be tempted to use a free service.
Before you go ahead and set up your autoresponders, there are some factors you must consider, especially if you have chosen a free autoresponder service.
1. Some free autoresponders contain ads for other companies!
Nothing is free in this life, and it’s true for free autoresponder systems. These outgoing emails will contain advertisements for other companies. These can appear in the form of annoying pop-ups or large, garish banners. It is not impossible that they may also contain ads for one of your competitors! You have crafted your autoresponder message carefully so these advertisements will only distract your reader, possibly annoy him, and tempt him to click away from your message before it has even been read!
2. Test out their help desk before you sign up
You get what you pay for, and if something is free you can’t really expect to get excellent support if you have a problem, can you? Their support systems will probably prioritize paying members and you will be left hanging. If this happens too often, then all the time you have spent setting up the system will be wasted, when you decide their service is not for you. If you feel you really must go with a free autoresponder service, it’s best to test out their helpdesk before you sign up – you may end up saving hours of work or even losing your valuable list members. If there’s any doubt, pay for a good service.
3. Free autoresponders and their fine print
Who reads those long, boring Terms and Conditions pages? I certainly don’t but I realize I should always read them! Somewhere, just after your eyes start glazing over, these free autoresponder services may have a line that stakes claim to your email list! If you are like me, I write a line somewhere in my opt-in box that states I hate spam and would never sell or use my subscriber’s email addresses for etcetera. We all do it. But that little statement doesn’t cover the email company. They are just delighted that you have thousands of subscribers, because they use your email subscribers’ details for their nefarious purposes! Proving that their service is not free at all!
Your main business’s email list is far too valuable to jeopardize by using a free email autoresponder service. By all means use free autoresponders if you are running a test or experiment, but my advice to you is stay away from them completely and find a service you can trust from day one.
Internet Marketing Training