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Starting an email list within WordPress

Starting an email list within WordPress

Starting an email list or newsletter within a WordPress website can have many advantages. Your visitors who like your content and want to stay up to date are often best kept informed by a newsletter. And several marketing studies show that a newsletter is still a powerful tool.

Starting an email list or newsletter often requires some homework before you can start gathering it. We want to explain this in more detail in this blog post.

Starting an email list and collecting email addresses

Starting an email list can be as simple as installing a plugin and declaring it done, however there is often more to it than you first thought. There are a number of considerations and guidelines you need to adhere to before popping this into your WordPress website.

Once you have a solid foundation of email users and you start sending emails to your visitors or potential customers it's important not to spam your visitors and make sure you offer value in the newsletter. If there is no added value to a newsletter, it can quickly result in negative feedback in the form of unsubscribes and further backlash. That's why it's important to pay attention to every email that goes out. Make sure you have correct spelling, added value, for example in the form of extra information that is not accessible to everyone. Or another form of a bonus point.

Legislation and privacy

Before you start collecting email addresses you need to make some additions to your privacy policy and make sure the necessary information is available so people who fill in their email address know where they stand.

For example, the following basic rules apply when signing up for a newsletter. We strongly recommend seeking advice from an expert in this area.

  • From which email address can messages be expected? Try to keep this separate from your main email address.
  • There should be an option to unsubscribe with one click.
  • There should be an indication of how much will be sent. For example, state that you will be sending a monthly or weekly newsletter. And stick to that.
  • You must specify what kind of information will be sent. For example, are these further tips and tricks or the updates to the latest blog posts?
  • There should be a reference to the privacy statement for more information, or another place where you explain more about this.
  • Consent must be given explicitly. This can't be done with a check mark or slider that's already easily selected. The visitor or new subscriber needs to perform an action to agree.
  • Furthermore, you process in your privacy policy in what way there is used of the email list. How the data is safely stored. Which third parties use the same email list or information. And any other consent and processing that is used with respect to email.

Email list plugins

Like many things related to WordPress hosting, there are plugins available that allow you to manage and send an email list through a third party. It is generally recommended to manage this through a third party as well. Once your email list grows and you're going to send more email then you often come up against limits.

MijnHostingPartner.nl manages thousands of websites, email and data. All these websites and email addresses send massive amounts of messages. It is therefore essential for us to limit this. So there are no more than 100 SMTP connections possible in 10 minutes. We do this because in the past when we didn't have these limits we were constantly getting blacklisted and on SPAM lists. This is why we had to make a decision.

There are parties and plugins that specialize in this and have built their infrastructure around it. This way you run less risk of being blacklisted, and you have access to a log system and more advanced features.

Some plugins that are often used for this purpose are:

MailChimp

https://nl.wordpress.org/plugins/mailchimp-for-wp/

SendinBlue

https://www.sendinblue.com/plugins/wordpress/

Both options are suitable to easily collect and manage email addresses with a simple installation of a plugin. Other options require an extra WordPress plugin to create the forms. And we're not a direct fan of setting it up that way.

Both sendinblue and MailChimp are free to use to some extent, and have a threshold after which you need to pay. In the future, look out for a direct comparison between these two plugins and their pluses and minuses. However, we are still in the testing phase with this ourselves, which one we like better. If you already have an opinion about this, feel free to share it with us via the online chat.

Sending emails to your email list subscribers

So you're all set, you've updated your privacy policy, and you meet all the legal requirements. Your sign up form looks slick and you're getting email addresses from users. Now the big question is how to expand this list, and how to keep your current email subscribers happy.

Expanding the email list can be done in a number of ways, but the bottom line is that you need to actively promote it. There will be very few people who will subscribe to your email list by filling out a form in the footer of your website. That's why it's important to point this out in blog posts, pay attention to it on social media and ask people to join in a prominent place. This can also be done with a pop up and a little extra. For example, do you have an ultimate guide for x, a nice recipe book for your cooking blog or a how to video. This is the place to put it in that pop up.

Start your WordPress email list now with the Managed WordPress hosting packages from MijnHostingPartner.nl!