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Score 8.4 out of 101
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Score 8 out of 101

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Likelihood to Recommend

Amazon SES

While most companies can get away with stock or lightly modified SaaS solutions, if email is absolutely core to your business, I'd recommend Amazon's Simple Email Service. It provides the lowest pricing outside of building up your own sender reputation, while providing the same flexibility and performance, especially if your application servers are already in AWS.
The drawback to all this power is that you need to dedicate engineering resources to building, modifying, and maintaining your email pipeline. If you can't justify those expenses, go with a SaaS product.
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SendGrid Transactional Email

We've been proponents/users of their marketing email platform for many years. The ease of use that we get from the marketing side is mirrored on the transactional side. This is something that other companies don't pay much attention to and they should!
Patrick Meyer profile photo

Pros

  • Low cost; I do not know anyone that can match their low cost unless you are in the free tier of G-Suite for work Gmail.
  • High reliability - messages do get delivered. We have had no issues.
  • Easy to set up the basics - generate the credentials and add it to your code.
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  • Top of the list has to be deliverability. As a company with a large client base, it is paramount to ensure that these types of emails are delivered timely and accurately.
  • Pricing for transactional is surprisingly competitive.
  • Sendgrid leads in scalable cloud infrastructure which means that when we grow they grow with us. This eliminates the 'time-costly' need to go out and shop other options.
Patrick Meyer profile photo

Cons

  • SES does not seem to have any major issues at the moment, it's an email relay service and it does that job swimmingly.
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  • It can be difficult to best configure SendGrid, especially when setting up dedicated IP addresses and the various DNS entries needed for reliable email delivery. Settings and instructions can be spread throughout multiple pages of the SendGrid web application.
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Alternatives Considered

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Mandrill discontinued their transactional email service. SparkPost had serious deliverability problems, with many of our emails being filtered as spam, not reaching recipients -- who in turn complained to us about not getting the emails they wanted. Only SendGrid has both affordability and reliability.
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Return on Investment

  • SES allowed us to send thousands of messages without any major concern of hitting sending limits.
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  • We send several hundred thousand emails a month, and most of these are notifications our customers pay to have in their inbox as important events happen. The ROI is clear.
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Pricing Details

Amazon SES

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details

SendGrid Transactional Email

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details