At first glance, free autoresponder software sounds like a gift from above. After all, if you can automate your correspondence with your customers and manage to do so for free, why wouldn't you want to choose free autoresponder software?
As with everything that's free, there are often hidden costs.
The Problems With Free Autoresponder Software The software itself may be buggy or outdated. Since it's free, your chance of getting software support is somewhere between low and non-existent. If the software loses messages or customers, or both, then it's down to you to sort out the problem. This is a problem with one of the most popular low-cost or free autoresponder software on the market If you get a spam complaint from a user, you have to deal with the problem yourself If your web host gets a spam complaint from a user, they will likely close down your hosting account first and ask questions later Hosting multiple email lists can be tricky. Most cheap or free autoresponder software is only designed to use and maintain one list. So as you expand your business you'll need to look elsewhere or get clever with the software to work around the problem When your business out grows your free autoresponder software you'll likely have problems getting your subscribers to re-subscribe to the new service. With all the spam complaints around, the reputable paid-for autoresponder services usually require that you get your existing subscribers to re-subscribe. This can cause high drop out rates as people don't always bother to re-subscribe. You spend your time maintaining other people's autoresponder software rather than growing your own business. Everything has its cost and free is often the most expensive option out there as it involves using your time. If you don't remember to take regular backups of your customer data, your chance of recovering your list after a software glitch is zero. Professional autoresponder services take backups seriously so your data is safe. The speed that your messages are sent out isn't restricted. Many web hosts have a limit on the number of emails that can be sent out from their services, so once your list grows you may either be unable to send messages at all or you could find that your free autoresponder software slows to a snails pace
If, like me, you can't afford to risk your business on free autoresponder software, check out my recommendations for reliable autoresponder software at http://whichautoresponder.com/