Review: 5 Key Things To Consider Before Investing in Cold Email Outreach

Let me take a guess, you're probably tired of the hit-and-miss approach of manual cold emailing. I understand - it’s exhausting 🤯.

You might be using some form of automated outreach tool that promises the moon, but fails to deliver. And now, you’re here for an honest review to see if it really delivers. 

Lucky for you, you’re in the right place! 

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been using extensively and have also poured over dozens of user testimonials to bring you a complete, comprehensive look. Today, we’re going to share insights that are particularly relevant to you, as a sales or marketing professional who's looking to generate more leads through cold outreach. 

Let's get into it!

We're going to explore:

  • How streamlines your email outreach
  • The features that set apart
  • 7 critical metrics to evaluate before choosing any cold email tool, like email deliverability, validation, personalization, etc.
  • Specific aspects you should consider before investing in, and
  • Where outshines its competitors, and where it falls short.

I promise, by the end of this article, you’ll have a clearer understanding of whether is the tool that can transform your lead generation efforts. 

So, grab a coffee and let’s dive in - you wouldn’t want to miss out on potentially amplifying your outreach strategy, would you?

What is and How does it work? is an integrated platform aimed at enhancing cold email outreach and automation. This tool is especially designed to connect seamlessly with various communication platforms, making it a versatile choice for sales and marketing professionals looking to streamline their outreach efforts.

The homepage

Here's a closer look at how works and the benefits it offers:

1. Finding Potential Customers:

  • excels in helping you identify and reach out to potential leads through its unlimited mailboxes and sophisticated email warmup processes using AI. 
  • This setup ensures your emails reach the inbox, not the spam folder, enhancing your chances of engagement.

In simple terms, by automating these foundational aspects of email outreach, reduces the manual effort required in managing multiple accounts and maintaining email health.

2. Automating Repetitive Tasks:

  • With features like auto-rotating email accounts and multi-channel outreach capabilities, the platform automates the sending of cold emails and follow-ups across various platforms including Email, SMS, Twitter, and WhatsApp.

In simple terms, this automation helps in consistently reaching your audience without needing to manually manage each communication channel.

3. Tracking Key Metrics

  • provides analytics and tracking for opens, replies, and other engagement metrics. This data is crucial for understanding the effectiveness of your campaigns and refining your strategies.

Again, in simple terms, by having these insights at your fingertips, you can make informed decisions to enhance your outreach and increase sales.

Cool, right?

Real-World Use of 

Today, thousands of businesses globally use to enhance their marketing and sales efforts. Here’s how they benefit:

Streamlined Campaign Management: Users can easily set up and manage campaigns with integrated tools for email and multi-channel marketing. This helps keep your sales pipeline organized and efficient. But, How Does It Work? I hear you ask...Well, with, you can:

  • Create and automate email sequences
  • Schedule and automate follow-ups based on recipient behavior
  • Use built-in templates or create custom ones for various outreach scenarios

Enhanced Sales Productivity: not only automates tasks but also offers tools to analyze the performance of your campaigns, giving you insights to optimize your sales processes - isn't that useful!

Implementation and Ease of Use

Does setting up require extensive training? That's a good question! Let's take a look.

Getting started with

  • The platform is designed to be user-friendly, with straightforward steps to integrate it into your existing setups, such as linking it to your main communication channels.

So, what do you actually need to do to get started? simply head on over to and sign up for a 14-day free trial to explore its features. You cal also utilize the various support options including guided tutorials and customer support for any technical help. While the platform aims to be intuitive, new users might initially need to invest some time to familiarize themselves with the full range of functionalities.

A Closer Look at's Features is packed with features that can significantly improve your cold emailing effectiveness:

  1. Email and Multi-Channel Automation: Automate your emails and extend your outreach across multiple channels to increase your reach and potential responses.
  2. Unlimited Email Templates: Save time with reusable templates or create customized responses that resonate more with your prospects. These templates are easy to adapt and use for various campaign needs.
  3. Robust Tracking and Analytics: Keep track of your campaign performance with detailed analytics that help you understand what works and what doesn’t, allowing for timely adjustments.
  4. Seamless Integrations: Connect with other tools you already use, enhancing your workflow and data synchronization without the need for manual transfers.
  5. Team Collaboration Features: Share campaigns and insights easily with your team, enhancing collaboration and ensuring everyone is on the same page. 

By leveraging these features, not only simplifies your outreach efforts but also enhances your ability to engage with prospects effectively.

Now let’s take a look at - 'critical factors to be aware of before buying Smartlead'. Review: 7 Critical Factors to Be Aware Of

Let's go over some key points to think about when you're picking an automation tool. We'll break it down so it's clear and straightforward.

Critical Factor #1. Email Deliverability

It’s crucial that your emails actually reach the inboxes and not get stuck in spam. Good deliverability means more people actually read what you send.

Critical Factor #2. Email Validation

This feature makes sure the email addresses you have are valid. It’s important because you don’t want to waste effort on emails that never reach anyone.

Critical Factor #3. Hyper Personalization

This is about making each email feel like it’s written just for the person reading it. When emails feel personal, people are more likely to engage with them.

Critical Factor #4. Customer Support

Customer support is another big one. You need fast and effective support when issues pop up. It’s about having reliable help at your fingertips.

Critical Factor #5. Integrations

Integrations should not be overlooked. The tool you choose should work well with the other software you’re already using. It’s like making sure all parts of your system work together smoothly.

Critical Factor #6. Pricing

Pricing needs to be clear and fair. Look for something that fits your budget but also gives you the right features. It’s all about getting the best value for money.

Critical Factor #7. User Experience

User Experience is key. The tool should be easy and pleasant to use. If it’s user-friendly, it’ll make everyone’s life easier and work better.

Note: Taking the time to consider these factors will help you choose the right tool - one that fits just right with your needs and helps your organization run smoothly. What do you think? While it's clear that the right tool can make a significant difference, it's also important to look at the other side of the coin.

5 Cons To Know Before Investing in

Here’s some of the potential drawbacks you might face with, ensuring you have a well-rounded view before making your decision. These are some of the more common issues we found when checking out some of the reviews of from across the internet.

Email Deliverability Issues: Users have reported that Smartlead doesn't adequately warn when emails land in spam. This can be quite a setback because you think you're connecting with your audience when, in fact, your messages are going unseen.

A review of from
A review of taken from

❌ Misleading Open Rates: Smartlead often shows inflated open rates. This can give a false sense of effectiveness, leading users to continue campaigns that are not actually performing well, ultimately costing time and money.

❌ Lack of Real-Time Updates: Users have pointed out that the tool doesn't update inboxes in real time, requiring manual refreshes to see new emails. This can slow down your workflow and reduce efficiency.

A review outlining some interface issues with

❌ Complex Interface Issues: While some users find the tool to be user-friendly, others have noted that its complexity and the frequent disconnection of MX inboxes can be frustrating. This adds unnecessary complexity to managing communications.

Another review outlining some issues with the interface of

❌ Slow Response and Feature Updates: Although Smartlead is praised for its responsiveness, users have experienced delayed updates and slow feature rollouts which can hinder user experience and efficiency, especially when these features are critical to user operations.

These points reflect some of the limitations of which might help you decide if is the right tool for your needs. Understanding where it excels can further assist in making an informed choice. Here are 3 areas where performs better than other tools on the market.

3 Areas Where Performs Better

Centralized Master Inbox: Many users appreciate the centralized master inbox feature, which allows them to manage all their email interactions from a single point.

A review from G2 of

This is especially useful for organizations that handle high volumes of email, making it easier to track conversations and ensure nothing gets missed.

AI-Optimized Sending: Smartlead's AI-optimized sending capability is another highlight. It helps users optimize the timing and strategy of their email campaigns based on data-driven insights.

This feature enhances the effectiveness of email outreach by increasing the likelihood of emails being opened and engaged with.

Comprehensive Feature Set: Users often mention the comprehensive range of features that Smartlead offers. 

These include tools for lead management, campaign tracking, and detailed analytics, which together provide a robust platform for managing extensive email marketing strategies. Pricing Analysis

A look at the different pricing tiers
An overview of's pricing

Smartlead offers several pricing plans that cater to different needs of businesses. Here’s a simple breakdown of what each plan offers:

  • Basic Plan ($39/month): This is a good starting option for marketers who are just beginning to grow their businesses. It includes 2,000 active leads, 6,000 emails each month, unlimited email accounts for sending, and quick support within 24 hours. This plan is quite basic and might feel limited as your business grows.
  • Popular Plan ($79/month): Better for businesses that are expanding, this plan gives you 10,000 active leads and 40,000 emails each month. It also includes a custom CRM to manage your customers better and email guide assistance. The popular plan is more expensive, but it offers more resources for growing businesses. Some alternatives are relatively cheaper.
  • Pro Plan ($94/month): This plan is designed for marketers with advanced needs, offering 30,000 active leads and 150,000 emails each month. It includes everything in the Popular Plan plus tools for automating tasks (webhooks and integrations), API access, and unlimited user seats. Their pro plan is comprehensive but also the most expensive.
  • Custom Plan: For very large teams or agencies, this flexible plan allows up to 2 million leads and includes 300,000 email credits per month. The custom plan is perfect for very specific or high-volume requirements and includes all other features offered by Smartlead. But this comes with a large dent in your pocket.

Plan Name Monthly Price Annual Price Emails Per Month Email Accounts Additional Features
Basic Plan $39 $468 6,000 Unlimited Dynamic IP Addresses, Centralized Master Inbox, Dynamic Sequences, Detailed Analytics
Popular Plan $79 $948 40,000 Unlimited Includes all Basic features + Custom CRM, Email Guide Assistance, Global Block List
Pro Plan $94 $1,128 150,000 Unlimited Includes all Popular features + Webhooks, Integrations, API Access, Unlimited Seats
Custom Plan Custom Pricing Custom Pricing Up to 300,000 Unlimited Includes all Pro features, plus ability to customize further for large teams

Each plan offers more features and capacity as the price increases. However, the higher cost may be a concern for smaller businesses or those with variable needs. 

Note:💡 It’s important to choose a plan that fits both your budget and your business requirements.

Why should you look for an alternative to

As we conclude this review of, you might find yourself asking "Does sufficiently meet my needs?" 

Depending on your specific circumstances, the answer might vary. indeed brings a lot to the table, especially with its features aimed at automating and streamlining cold email outreach. However, these benefits might come with a cost—both literally and figuratively. Moreover, the platform's complexity might pose a challenge for newcomers, potentially steepening the learning curve. Critical issues like email deliverability concerns and potentially inaccurate reporting on campaign metrics could further detract from its value. These concerns are significant; after all, the effectiveness of your outreach campaigns hinges on these critical elements. 

🐒 Feeling overwhelmed by complexity and deliverability?

That's a common concern.

What you need is a tool that aligns closely with your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), enables you to send personalized emails at any scale in any language, and is straightforward to operate from the outset. Thankfully, you have a better alternative that meets these criteria, offers better deliverability, strong email infrastructure, personalization at any scale, and gets you high quality leads. Let's explore The Best Alternative to emerges as the superior alternative to Smartlead for several reasons, in this section we'll go into more detail around each one:

Seamless Integrations

Salesforge integrates with 1000s of your favourite apps
Some of the native integrations offers

Integrating Salesforge with other tools like Zapier is effortless. No need for manual transfers or complicated setups. Salesforge streamlines your workflow by connecting with your favorite tools seamlessly.

Comprehensive Customer Support

Salesforge provides quick and responsive customer support.

A review of Salesforge that describes how easy it is to switch from Instantly.
A review of Salesforge taken from

Assistance from the very helpful Salesforge team is readily available whenever users encounter issues. This ensures a smooth user experience with prompt problem resolution - every time!

AI-Driven Email Creation

Salesforge produces high quality, personalised emails at scale.
An example of an AI-generated email Salesforge can produce

Salesforge's AI capabilities transform email creation. It helps users craft highly personalized and effective cold emails that outperform emails written by experienced salespeople, giving users a significant edge when it comes to their pipe gen efforts.

Check out this review by Roman:

Salesforge's new infrastructure is a game-changer. Big boost for my deliverability and sending capacity. I've tried multiple outreach tools and let me tell you: it's a must-have for everyone that is serious about cold emailing at scale.
— Roman Hipp (Co-founder,

Domain Management Tools

Managing domains with Salesforge is also a super straightforward process. You can easily transfer existing domains or purchase new ones within the Mailforge platform. Say goodbye to the hassle of dealing with domain-related tasks!

Cost-Efficiency and Setup Ease

A review of outlining how cheap and efficient it is
A review of taken from

Salesforge offers cost-effective pricing and a simple setup process. This means it's perfect for small businesses looking to scale their email campaigns. Budget-friendly and user-friendly, maximizing ROI without sacrificing effectiveness.

Curious about the pricing? Up next, we'll take a look at an overview of Salesforge's pricing model👇

Salesforge Pricing

Salesforge pricing overview
An overview of's pricing model

Salesforge only has two pricing plans:

  • Growth Plan: The Growth plan offers significant value whether you choose monthly at $96 or annually at $80 per month. 

With features like 10,000 active contacts, 50,000 emails per month, and unlimited mailboxes and users, it includes advanced AI models, Primebox™ for unlimited email warm-up, and priority support.

  • Pro Plan: $48 per month on a monthly basis, or $40 per month on an annual basis. 

The Pro plan suits those with smaller needs, offering features like 1,000 active contacts, 5,000 emails per month, and unlimited mailboxes. However, it limits users to 1 and provides basic support via live chat. The table below sums up the plan 👇

Plan Pricing (Monthly) Pricing (Annual) Active Contacts Emails per Month Mailboxes Support
Growth $96 $80 per month 10,000 50,000 Unlimited Priority
Pro $48 $40 per month 1,000 5,000 Unlimited Live Chat

In a nutshell, with you can select how many contacts & emails you require, how many validation credits you'd like and also how many personalization credits you'd like to create a flexible pricing package that suits your needs.

Salesforge vs

Here's a table comparing Smartlead and Salesforge based on common features:

Attributes How Performs How Performs The Best Option
Multi-channel Automation Smartlead automates across multiple channels, expanding reach beyond just emails. Salesforge focuses solely on email automation and lacks multi-channel capabilities. Smartlead is better because it allows outreach across various platforms, not just email, which can increase potential responses.
Personalization Uses templates that can be customized but lacks advanced AI-driven personalization. Utilizes advanced AI to create highly personalized and effective emails. Salesforge is better as its AI personalization often surpasses human-written content, making emails more engaging and likely to elicit responses.
Email Deliverability Has issues with emails landing in spam without warnings, affecting campaign effectiveness. No specific mention of deliverability issues; focuses on creating content that engages well. Salesforge is better because it focuses on quality content which is crucial for avoiding spam filters and improving deliverability.
Integration Capabilities Seamlessly integrates with other tools enhancing workflow and data synchronization. Effortlessly enhance your workflow by seamlessly integrating 1000+ daily-use apps. Salesforge slightly edges out due to its broader integration without needing additional tools for complete functionality.
Pricing Higher starting price, ranging from $48 to $96 per month Competitive pricing with monthly and annual options, starting from $40 per month Salesforge stands out as the preferred option due to its competitive pricing, comprehensive features, and priority support

Smartlead is great for covering multiple channels and ensuring smooth integration with other tools, which is super handy for reaching a wide audience. But when it comes to really making those email interactions count, Salesforge takes the cake. Its AI-driven personalization not only crafts top-notch emails but also might give you better chances of actually landing in your recipient's inbox. So, if you're all about making those email conversations feel genuine and getting those responses rolling in, Salesforge seems like the way to go. Depending on your specific needs—whether broader reach or deeper engagement—one may suit your strategy better than the other.

Here are a few areas where Salesforge falls short of Smartlead:

When we compare Smartlead and Salesforge, each tool has its strengths and works a bit differently.

Smartlead excels in sending automated messages not just through email, but through other channels too. This is helpful if you want to reach people in many ways. But, there's a problem sometimes: emails from Smartlead might go into spam, and they don't warn you when this happens.

Salesforge, on the other hand, focuses on making each email very personal with the help of AI. This means the emails you send can feel like they were written just for the person receiving them, which can increase engagement and make them more likely to respond. Although Salesforge doesn't offer automation across multiple channels like Smartlead does, it makes up for this by making each email very special. The AI helps write emails that really connect with people.

So, if you prefer to send emails that are very personal and engaging, Salesforge might be a better choice. 


Smartlead is a solid option if you're in need of an email automation tool with a focus on improving your cold emailing effectiveness. However, when it comes to a comprehensive solution for sales outreach, Salesforge is a better option. With Salesforge, you not only get seamless integrations and AI-driven email creation, but also responsive customer support and domain management tools. Whether you're a small business looking to scale your email campaigns or a seasoned sales professional seeking a more efficient way to reach potential customers, Salesforge offers the perfect combination of affordability, functionality, and ease of use

Hope this Smartlead review has helped you!

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