In this article we take a look at how to choose an email service provider for your cold email campaigns.

Following on from our last article that outlines what the best ESPs are, we thought it'd be handy for us to give you a bit more information around how to choose the best one that fits your specific needs. So here we are with another killer article.

Let's go!

When selecting an email service provider (ESP) for cold email campaigns, you should prioritize factors such as integration with cold email tools, user experience, scalability, cost, and security.

Make sure you select a cold email-compatible email service provider that maintains high deliverability rates and is easily scalable.

Always check scalability features to manage growing email volume effectively and assess pricing to ensure it aligns with your budget without sacrificing necessary functionality. Also, look for cold email user-friendly platforms with responsible customer support to minimize hiccups and have a great email experience.

Lastly, robust security protocols, a substantial email server, and positive customer reviews should guide your selection and give you confidence in it.

Key Takeaways

  • Your ESP must integrate seamlessly with cold email tools.
  • The platform should be user-friendly and supported by excellent customer service.
  • Consider scalability and flexibility to accommodate growing email volumes.
  • Ensure the ESP offers competitive pricing without compromising essential features.
  • Review the ESP's terms of service and privacy policy to ensure compliance with legal standards and data protection.
  • Emails must have a high inbox placement rate.

1. Integrates Seamlessly with Cold Email Tools

An ideal Email Service Provider (ESP) seamlessly integrates with cold email tools, boosting the efficiency of marketing campaigns. Its robust capabilities ensure smooth email operations, improving deliverability rates and maintaining the sender's reputation.

When choosing an ESP, prioritize compatibility with cold email tools and a strong deliverability record.

Real life footage of agency owners switching to

Providers like Zoho Mail are great for transactional emails and marketing emails. They even work okay with email marketing tools, but if you add them to a cold email warmer, they will ban you without a refund. We'll save you the hassle of testing every email address provider; just avoid these email providers if you plan on running cold emails.

  1. GMX Mail
  2. iCloud Mail / Apple Mail
  3. Zoho Mail
  4. AOL Mail
  5. Yahoo Mail

Oh! If you're using Google Workspace, you're in for a whole drama to integrate it with cold email tools. But if you choose a tool like, you can integrate it with popular cold email software like Instantly, Saleshandy, Smartlead, or pretty much instantly. 

2. Prioritizes Exceptional User Experience

While seamless integration with cold email tools is essential for the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, prioritizing an exceptional user experience is equally vital for ensuring that these tools are accessible and efficient for marketers.

Choosing an email service provider with advanced features isn't always the best option. An ESP with a great user experience can significantly enhance cold email campaign management and execution.

An intuitive, user-friendly platform can significantly impact the productivity and success of email marketing efforts. Mailforge offers a slick, modern user interface with a simple user experience that even your fresh intern can get around.

3. Designed for Easy Scalability

Choosing a scalable email service provider is crucial for businesses aiming to improve their cold email marketing over time. Scalability ensures smooth adaptation and prevents disruptions as your business expands.

Opt for flexible pricing and robust infrastructure to accommodate growth, ensuring seamless scaling of sales operations with evolving campaign demands.

If you're using Google Workspace, you should know scalability is HARD. You should use one domain with three email accounts within one workspace. If you host all your domains and emails within one workspace, your entire cold email infrastructure can get banned or crumble after an update or spam trigger.

That's where comes in. You can deploy hundreds of domains and email addresses within minutes.

4. Compare Costs With Competing Providers

Assessing email service providers' cost-effectiveness is crucial for budget optimization and scalable growth. Examining pricing structures can uncover hidden charges or potential expenses.

A comprehensive cost comparison ensures that you choose a provider that offers the right balance of affordability and robust functionality to enhance your marketing strategies.

You do not need a wide range of features like Google Drive storage space, more email storage, a dedicated email app, secure email, and better Google meeting call time for cold email. You just need email inboxes to send bulk emails.

Google Workspace is $6, outlook is $5, and then there’s Mailforge offering the lowest at just $3. specializes in that, but better and cheaper. Ten email inboxes cost just $30 per month. A bargain!

5. Offers Superior Sending Capacity

An email service provider with great sending capacity guarantees is mandatory for expansive marketing campaigns.

Better sending capacity means sending less than 100 emails daily to new leads from each inbox. It's common knowledge that you should send 25 leads and 25 warm-up emails daily with Google Workspace. So, you don't want to choose an ESP that doesn't allow this minimum limit.

  • Scalability: Easily adjusts to increasing volume as your business grows.
  • Reliability: Consistent performance even under the strain of consistent sends.
  • Spam, IP Security: Strong protocols to protect email inboxes to maintain IP reputation and prevent spammers.

Selecting a provider with these qualities ensures both reach and the secure and effective delivery of your marketing communications.

By the way, Mailforge email inboxes allow 30 sends and 30 warm-up emails without any hiccups.

6. Ensures High Email Deliverability Rates

High email deliverability rates are essential to higher conversion rates.

Imagine spending hours researching prospects, paying for Apollo, and verifying the emails only to find out they aren't being delivered. A good email service guarantees that emails reach their destinations and achieve the desired engagement.

When selecting an ESP, it is mandatory to double-check its email deliverability. This involves assessing its infrastructure, authentication practices, and IP reputation. High deliverability rates ensure that your emails are recognized as legitimate and are less likely to be flagged as spam.

Mailforge guarantees a high email deliverability rate, so we call it the sales and marketing teams' best friend.

7. Guarantees Emails Land in Recipients' Inbox

If your emails land in the promotion filter or the spam folder, be sure there's something fishy. So many things come into play if your emails are not landing in prospects' inboxes, for instance, the cold email software, warm-up tool, blacklisted IP, and also the esp. ESPs prioritize high deliverability rates, ensuring messages avoid spam folders. They use advanced IP rotation and protection protocols, optimize send times, and customize content, reducing spam filter risks.

Key factors to take into account include:

  • Deliverability Rates: Choose ESPs that provide transparency about their success rates.
  • SPAM Filters: Utilize tools that have spam filters and bounce rate protection to protect the emails.
  • IP Reputation Management: Opt for providers to maintain good sender reputations, significantly influencing inbox placement.

8. Emphasizes Data Security Measures

Data security is a pivotal concern when selecting an Email Service Provider, guaranteeing that customer information remains protected from unauthorized access. A robust email service provider prioritizes advanced security protocols, including state-of-the-art encryption techniques that safeguard data during transmission and storage. Compliance with international standards and regulations, such as GDPR and HIPAA, is also essential. These measures ensure the provider adheres to stringent privacy laws, protecting the sender's and recipient's data.

9. Proactively Prevents IP Blacklisting


An effective Email Service Provider proactively implements measures to prevent IP blacklisting, ensuring uninterrupted email campaign deliverability. This is essential for the success of cold email campaigns, as IP blacklisting can severely hinder the ability to reach potential clients.

Here are the key strategies used:

  • Regular Monitoring and Reporting: Proactively scanning for and addressing deliverability issues before they escalate to blacklisting.
  • Volume Control: Implementing sending limits to avoid sudden spikes in email volume, which can trigger blacklisting.
  • Reputation Management: Ensuring a good sender reputation by enforcing strict compliance with anti-spam laws and maintaining high-quality mailing lists.

I used to work at Google; when building Mailforge, we ensured that we used similar technology to Google Workspace emails.

10. Provides Responsive Customer Support

A reliable ESP should offer responsive customer support to resolve issues during campaigns, preventing disruptions swiftly. Great support not only fixes technical problems but also provides valuable insights. When choosing an ESP, prioritize responsive, knowledgeable support tailored to cold email challenges. Excellent support is crucial for minimizing downtime and frustration. Also, prioritize transparent pricing without compromising quality. Due to Google Workspaces' popularity, they have extensive user-generated tutorials, yet accessing support can be challenging.

Conversely, Mailforge provides dedicated customer support five days a week.

11. No Contradictory TOS (Terms of Service) and Privacy Policy

Aligning an Email Service Provider's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy is crucial for ensuring compliance and trust. When choosing an email service provider for cold email campaigns, carefully review these documents to ensure they are consistent, especially regarding recipient data use and storage.

  • Clear Usage Guidelines: Verify that the terms allow for the specific nature of cold email campaigns, including frequency and content rules.
  • Data Protection Assurance: Seek firm commitments to data security and clear definitions of data usage that align with your business's privacy standards.
  • Compliance with Laws: Both documents should comply with relevant laws, such as GDPR or CAN-SPAM, protecting you from legal repercussions.

Avoid companies like Zoho. Check if they permit cold emails through their support or opt for Mailforge.

12. Backed by Positive Reviews

Customer reviews offer valuable insights into the email service provider's performance, covering aspects like deliverability, automation features, and pricing.

Analyzing patterns in feedback on support and campaign management effectiveness helps gauge the provider's reliability. These testimonials validate the provider's claims and help users assess its practical strengths and weaknesses, aiding in informed decision-making. Have a look around our blog, in the past we've spent time analyzing the reviews of similar platforms so you don't have to!

To Wrap It All Up

To sum up, choosing the right Email Service Provider for cold email campaigns is like selecting a skilled captain for a ship sailing through the challenging waters of digital marketing. Just as the captain's expertise determines the safety and speed of the journey, so do the ESP's capabilities influence the success of an email marketing campaign.

Thus, companies must carefully evaluate their options, considering factors like: integration capabilities, scalability, cost, and compliance, to ensure their marketing efforts stay on the right track.