9 Mailchimp Best Practices For Small Businesses

Small businesses often have a limited number of resources available to them compared to large corporations. With smaller marketing budgets, small businesses must learn how to utilize every tool available to them. Mailchimp is one of the tools that small businesses can take advantage of to help boost their email marketing strategies. 

But what are all the benefits of Mailchimp? 9 experts have shared their best practices when it comes to using Mailchimp for their businesses. 

Use One Master Audience

I’ve completed a lot of audits for Mailchimp users. The number one best practice I’d recommend is to have only one master list, or audience, in a Mailchimp account. Most accounts I see may have 2, 5, or even 25 audiences! Instead, form one audience and use tags and segments to organize and target your contacts.

Brett Farmiloe, Small Business SEO

Be Aware of Other Mailchimp Services

Small businesses should know about the variety of services Mailchimp offers besides automated messaging. Mailchimp offers website hosting services that could elevate a business’s online presence. Having a solid and visible presence on several online platforms increases your chances of converting impressions into sales – as long as you utilize them.

Carey Wilbur, Charter Capital

Include Your Business Owner’s Name

I always recommend putting your business owner’s name in the “sent from” field. For example: Anna from Caldwell Media Arts, is likely to have a higher open rate than Caldwell Media Arts on its own. This is a strategy that works well for many small businesses who already rely on that personal touch from their founder(s) as part of their brand capital.

Anna Caldwell, Caldwell Media Arts

Give Your Emails Purpose 

Make the most of automated emails. When inboxes become flooded, emails with no value are the first in the trash. Make your messages valuable by utilizing welcome emails for new subscribers that describe what you offer, birthday discounts for those who provide their birthday information and new product or service notifications. Don’t just send an email to send an email. Make sure each message you send has a distinct purpose with a clear call to action rather than several messages saying the same thing over and over again.

Denise Gredler, BestCompaniesAZ

Subscribe to Newsletters

Subscribe to newsletters or updates from brands that you respect and admire. When you get them, set up a filter or file them in a folder for later so when it’s time to create your own content, you’re not reinventing the wheel or starting from scratch. This is also a really great way to get new ideas from industry experts. If you’re a small business, follow your competitors with big money who have an entire department crafting their emails. Austin Kleon wrote a great book on this theory called “Steal Like an Artist” – the secret is to do good work and make it your own. Even the greatest artists had inspiration in one form or another.

Sydney Miller, Tech Talent South

Utilize Templates 

Small businesses looking to shave some time off of emailing should utilize Mailchimp’s existing templates. Sometimes professionals will advise against it because there are some customization restrictions, but when you are first starting out, it is a lifesaver! The website features over 100 choices for emails and newsletters and it helps save the time and effort it would take to create/ code your own templates. 

Megan Chiamos, 365 Cannabis

Separate Audiences into Groups

If you have large email lists, segregate your audience in groups that make sense for your business. Not every subscriber will be interested in every piece of content you share. By tailoring campaigns by subject matter, geographic location and other preferences, you’ll reduce the amount of people that unsubscribe and increase open and click rates. It takes more time, but each campaign you send will have much higher engagement rates.

Colton De Vos, Resolute TS

Prune Your Email List 

One Mailchimp best practice that small businesses should know about is regularly pruning your email lists. If people don’t engage with or even open your emails, there’s no reason for them to be there. Not only are you paying for them to stay on your list, but their inactivity could negatively impact your deliverability with people who want to receive your emails. My rule of thumb is to automatically delete anyone who hasn’t opened my last twenty emails.

James Pollard, The Advisor Coach LLC

Tag All Your Contacts 

Tag your contacts! All of them. Find categories of content you like sharing, and then bucket those out among your tags. No one needs to receive all of your content, and breaking it up this way ensures you get the right message to the right folks. Contacts can have multiple tags too – embrace tagging!

Hana Ruzsa Alanis, Graphic Designer & Marketing Specialist