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ManyPixels and Flocksy Square Off

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The business landscape is constantly evolving and pushing forward through the 21st century. Corporate America is seeing a migration out of office space toward remote work. Small startups are capitalizing on social media campaigns to spread the word. And businesses of all sizes are learning about the beauties of outsourcing. Why waste manpower and overhead developing a customer service team? Outsource it. Why agonize over HR issues? Outsource it. And why bungle important presentations with shoddy graphic design when you could – you guessed it – outsource it.

Unlimited graphic design companies are out there to be at your beck and call whenever you need a touch of artistry. It seems that every day another graphic design company pops up offering an array of services. There is a handful that is really worth looking into. Penji, Design Pickle, Kimp – to name a few. Today, we look under the hood of two noteworthy unlimited graphic design companies: Flocksy and ManyPixels. Let’s see how they compare.

Services Offered

Flocksy and ManyPixels are both unlimited graphic design companies. Subscribers pay a monthly fee to have the services of a graphic design team.

ManyPixels

ManyPixels’ design team help with brand logos, infographics, presentations, ad campaigns, and web design. Any kind of graphic design you need, they can handle it. And not much else. They also have a free library of customizable icons and images on their website. You could pull one from their website right now without paying a dime. There aren’t watermarks or anything.

Flocksy

Flocksy also has you covered for all of your graphic design needs. Web design, animated GIFs. But it doesn’t stop at graphic design. They help with web development. They also handle copywriting if you need content for a website, and they design videos and offer voiceover work for those videos.

Winner

Flocksy is the dominate one in terms of services offered based solely on the variety and it’s not really close. It might not matter to you that your graphic design company does much more than just graphic design, but still – Flocksy is like a swiss army knife.

Pricing and Plans

Flocksy and ManyPixels can offer you the moon and that would be swell – but you still have to pay for it. Even if you run a large company with hundreds of employees, you still pay close attention to your budget, and you need something that makes fiscal sense in the end.

ManyPixels

ManyPixels has three subscription options. The most affordable is the ‘Essential’ plan. For $449/month, you can make unlimited requests and work with as many of your brands as you like with a promise of 1 project return per day. For $549/month, the ‘Advanced’ plan adds illustrations, web design, GIFs, and develop logos and branding. Their ‘Business’ plan comes in at $899/month and promises prioritized support and a second simultaneous output.

Flocksy

Plans work a little differently at Flocksy. They have the ‘Team’ plan and the ‘All Access’ plan. Both plans offer graphic design, video creation and editing, and their copywriting service. The ‘All Access’ plan also offers voiceover, custom illustrations, GIFs, and web development to go the extra mile. ‘All Access’ allows 20 of your people to work within the account while ‘Team’ only allows 5. Maybe you need more than 5. Maybe that’s excessive. ‘All Access’ also allows you to have unlimited brand buckets. (More on that later.) The ‘Team’ plan rings in at $420/month and the ‘All Access’ is $995/month.

Winner

Let’s say you’ll be using either service for the purposes of a graphic design team and that all the other bells and whistles are not important to you. In this case, ManyPixels is the winner – sort of. Sure, the Flocksy base plan is $29 cheaper than ManyPixels, but if you want GIFs, custom illustration, and web development – you have to dish out almost a grand. ManyPixels’ ‘Advanced’ plan takes the cake.

Submitting a Project

Even if you have millions to blow on graphic design (yeah right) no service is worth anything if it doesn’t work for you. What is the process like when you need to submit a request? Before we pick the two services apart, there are a few things that both have in common. For starters, they both have a user interface that works directly from their site. No using a third-party service like Trello or having to download an app, or submit projects via email. They also both offer brand profiles – or in the case of Flocksy – brand buckets.

A little on brands:

Say you have multiple brands that need some graphic design. Maybe you’re a children’s clothing store. Sometimes you need some graphic design work for the girl’s section, or the teen’s section, or the formal section. Each brand may require a different aesthetic. Sometimes you specifically want to work with different color profiles and fonts. Brand profiles or brand buckets allow you to save these aesthetics for the design team to reference when working with your brands. This is a great way for your brands to stay… on brand.

ManyPixels

ManyPixels is very straightforward. When you open up a new project task you are given the choice between different types of projects. Do you want to design an email graphic? An ad? Something for social media? Based on what type of project you choose, you will be assigned a graphic designer who specializes in that type of work. ManyPixels boasts about having a small team and therefore having more acute care than other graphic design companies that have a wide number of faceless artists.

For simple projects, the turnaround is roughly 24 hours. For more complicated custom work, tac on an extra day. If you have any questions or feedback to leave the team you can message your designer right from the site. Since their designers are all located in Europe and Asia, don’t expect a response right away. They will get back to you within a day during their business hours.

Flocksy

Flocksy’s service is fairly intuitive. While submitting design projects they offer prompts about your brand bucket, type of design you’re looking for, and give you space to upload any samples you would like the designers to draw from. For the graphic designs and copywriting, expect your project turnaround in a day. Web development takes a little longer. Many of Flocksy’s design team are in the States which is promising to those who need to have a back and forth with their designers.

Winner

It is close call. ManyPixels’ user interface is very pleasing and easy to use. There’s a reason you outsource your graphic design work. You don’t have the eye or the time for it. An idiot-proof user interface that is easy to navigate is key. But Flocksy wins here if only for the local talent. Being able to get a timely response can make a big difference if you have a deadline or if you need to make edits to a project.

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Reviews

Omnisend Review: A New Frontier in Ecommerce Marketing?

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Interested in giving Omnisend a try? Help us out by signing up with this link.

Anyone in the ecommerce industry knows how hard it is to engage customers.

How do you turn one-time shoppers into a reliable relationship? There’s a tricky balance between reaching a broad audience and creating a personal connection.

Omnisend is a marketing automation tool that specializes in ecommerce. With thousands of platform integrations, can they make the difference for your business? Here’s a review of what they offer.

A brief history of Omnisend

Before Omnisend, there was Soundest. The email marketing platform was founded in 2014 by Rytis Lauris and Justas Kruikas. What started in Lithuania quickly expanded into the UK, and later around the world. They grew beyond email to become an omnichannel automation tool and worked with over 70,000 ecommerce brands.

What they offer

While email remains front and center for Omnisend, their marketing tools go much further. The all-in-one marketing platform provides:

  • SMS tools
  • Email templates
  • Drag-and-drop content and automation editors
  • Customer engagement and behavior data
  • Pop-ups
  • Landing pages
  • Campaign and automation data
  • Facebook and Google ad retargeting

And more.

Omnisend pricing

Anyone can reach up to 250 contacts at no cost with Omnisend’s Free tier. Beyond that, pricing is based on how many contacts you plan to reach.

  • The Free tier is always free, but you can only reach 250 contacts, send 500 emails per month, and send 60 SMS messages.
  • The Standard tier starts at $16/mo for up to 500 contacts. It includes unlimited web push notifications and up to 6,000 emails per month.
  • The Pro tier starts at $59/mo for up to 500 contacts. It includes unlimited emails, unlimited web push, and free SMS credits equal to the cost of your monthly plan, starting at 3,933 per month.

For further details, check out their pricing page.

Getting started with Omnisend

You can sign up for Omnisend with your email address or directly through your Shopify account. Once you verify your accounts, you’re asked to input your name, your business’ name, your timezone, and your physical address. (A bit much, if you ask me.)

From there, you’re taken straight to your dashboard, where you can explore the site and get started on your first campaign.

Marketing with Omnisend

The Omnisend web app includes six tabs:

  • Dashboard
  • Campaigns
  • Automation
  • Forms
  • Audience
  • Reports

Here’s a breakdown of what you can do with these functions.

Dashboard

When you first sign up for Omnisend, your dashboard includes a welcome message and tips for getting started. Once you have campaigns running, your dashboard will contain stats on your overall performance and a live view of your store’s sales.

To do any of that, you’ll have to connect to your store. Omnisend integrates with ecommerce platforms including:

  • Shopify
  • BigCommerce
  • Magneto
  • PrestaShop
  • WooCommerce
  • Opencart
  • Zencart
  • Drupal Commerce
  • Übercart
  • OXID Esales
  • Wix

You can also integrate with any custom ecommerce platform using their API. The setup process takes only a few minutes.

Campaigns

Once you’ve connected your site, you’re ready to set up your first email campaign. At the top of the campaign settings field, you’ll see a safe sending volume. This volume indicates the ideal number of emails to send to optimize your reputation from ISPs and ensure the most engagement. For the standard plan, it starts at 20,000.

From there, you start by setting up how it’ll look in people’s inboxes. You can edit the sender name, subject line, add emojis and even personalization elements. These elements, such as name, date, and city, will appear differently for each recipient and can help drive engagement.

Next, you pick a template for the campaign. Omnisend has a small sampling of stylish templates to help you announce a product, offer a discount, or just send out a weekly newsletter. There are only 12 templates to choose from, but they get the job done.

From this window, you can also go straight to your brand settings through the “Manage your brand” button. Over there, you can input a logo, assets, and color schemes to be included in your campaigns.

Campaign editor

Once you’ve picked a template, you’re brought to an editor to make it your own. It’s more rigid than designing it yourself, but it has all the tools you need to make a captivating email. I especially like how easy it is to add layout elements and personalization tags. You can also send a test email before it goes live.

Automation

On top of building emails, you can also build automations to ensure you reach out to new and returning customers at just the right moment. 

For instance, one template is the three-email “Abandoned Cart” workflow. This triggers when a customer adds items to their cart and doesn’t check out. It sends an email 1 hour later, another one 11 hours later, and a final offer after 12 hours. 

You can customize these workflows and add more using app integrations. Omnisend has a whole marketplace of apps to integrate with. This includes tools for advertising, automation, loyalty, logistics, customer support, email capture, and more.

Forms

The forms tab lets you create pop-ups, which are an effective way to turn visitors into email subscribers. This tool has a wider range of templates than the campaign editor, but it gives you less freedom to move things around.

Templates include a standard sign-up box as well as discounts, free shipping, and Black Friday deals. There are also different layouts related to image placement (and of course, you can change details in the editor).

Once you’ve completed the signup form, you’re asked to set up its workflow. Ensure that customers get the right email, discount, or whatever else you intend to send them when they sign up.

Audience and reports

The audience tab lets you keep track of your customers, while the reports tab keeps up with campaigns. Using these two tools, you can easily gain insight into how your campaigns are doing and what you can do to improve them.

Omnisend’s advanced reporting tools are one of its best features. They display everything from customer life cycles to sales data, with even more data for Pro subscribers.

To get even further insights, you can divide your customers into segments. These can be custom-made or taken from pre-built templates like “frequent store visitors” or “at risk of churn.”

Is Omnisend right for your ecommerce business?

All in all, I was pretty impressed with what Omnisend had to offer. Their campaigns, automations, and data are perfectly geared for ecommerce and surprisingly thorough.

There are a few things I would fix. The email templates are lackluster, and marketing tools that go beyond email are fairly limited. Still, it’s a robust tool for creating and keeping track of email campaigns.

If you’re looking to build and maintain your audience as an ecommerce business, Omnisend is the tool for you. Get started today with this link.

Final rating: 9.1/10 💪

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Reviews

How Coupler.io Puts All Your Data in One Place

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Want to sign up for Coupler? Help OM by registering through this link.

Data makes the world go ‘round.

The more you grow your business, the more you’ll find yourself swarmed by information. Different locations, departments, and services all send everything back to you, and you’re expected to turn that data into results.

Luckily, businesses can count on automation tools to help keep things running smoothly. Coupler.io promises to help you compile and automate your data so you can focus on the future.

Can Coupler.io turbo-charge your business? Here’s a rundown on what it can do and how to get started.

What does Coupler.io do?

In the simplest terms, Coupler.io takes all your data and puts it into one easy-to-manage place. That data can come from WordPress, Slack, Trello, Shopify, Hubspot, and dozens of other SaaS sources. Coupler.io lets you combine the data from those sources and visualize them with Google Sheets, Excel, and BI tools like BigQuery. 

It’s basically a midpoint between data and intelligence. You supply the data and Coupler makes it digestible, letting your team analyze it and turn it into results.

How to get started with Coupler.io

Coupler.io is a fully web-based SaaS product, so all you need to use it is a browser and an email for signup.

Pricing

New users can check out Coupler’s tools absolutely free. The free tier lasts forever and lets you make up to 100 transfers of up to 1000 rows of data each month. It’s a great option for people with small-scale data needs; solopreneurs can get the whole Coupler.io experience without paying a dime.

The more data you need to transfer, the higher the price of your plan:

  • Professional: $24/mo. Allows up to 2,500 runs (transfers) of up to 10,000 rows each. Like the free tier, it automatically refreshes data every hour.
  • Squad: $49/mo. Up to 5,000 runs of 50,000 rows each. Automatic data refresh every 30 minutes.
  • Business: $99/mo. Up to 25,000 rows 100,000+ rows each. Data refresh every 15 minutes.

You can also save money by subscribing to an annual plan. Check out their pricing page for more details.

Coupler.io dashboard

Once you’ve completed the breezy 1-step signup process, you’re greeted with a stylish dashboard. Along the left-hand side are seven menus:

  • Importers
  • Connections
  • Account Usage
  • Users
  • Billing
  • Settings
  • Help Center

They recommend a five-step process for getting started. This includes adding your first importer, importing your first data, enabling automatic refresh, inviting teammates to join, and adding additional importers.

Let’s take a look at the Coupler.io process.

Coupler.io features

Importers

Importers take data from your source and output it into spreadsheets and visualizations. You can import data from a wide range of sources, including Slack, Google Drive, Hubspot, Mailchimp, and much more. You can also connect to additional sources using JSON API.

For destinations, your options are more limited. You can compile your data in Google Sheets, Excel, or BigQuery.

The process of setting up an importer is surprisingly simple. Just sign into your source/destination accounts, select which data you want to import/export from, and you’re golden.

In the same menu, you can set up a regular schedule for data refresh. You can select preferred days and times and how often you want to refresh. Refresh options include monthly, daily, and hourly for free users, with additional 30-minute and 15-minute options for paid subscribers.

Results

To test the software, I exported data from a Trello board into a Google Sheets spreadsheet. I was genuinely surprised by the speed of the transfer, but the trouble with an automatic transfer is that you don’t have much control over what data goes out.

Broadly speaking, it’s probably better that it’s thorough, but the data compilation can be a bit jarring at first glance.

Still, if I was looking to synthesize the data from my Trello board, this tool boils everything down and leaves you room to fine-tune it. 

Just note, when you’re setting it up with Sheets or Excel, you’ll have to create the destination document before you set up the importer.

Other features

Returning to the handy-dandy dashboard, you can keep track of your account usage (remember those run/row limits?), your connected accounts, and your team. 

In the “Users” tab, let members of your team access your Coupler account by inputting their email addresses.

Is Coupler.io worth it?

Coupler.io serves a very specific purpose. It compiles data into spreadsheets. If that’s a service your business needs, they’ve got it, with extra automation tools to sweeten the deal.

It’s a relatively new product, and there are things I think it could improve on. I wish it were easier to customize exactly what data gets imported. I also think additional analysis and visualization tools could make it that much more impressive.

Still, I was genuinely impressed with the speed and automation of Coupler.io. It’s a useful service done well, and you can try it out free of charge. What’s not to like?

Final rating: 7.7/10 📈

Ready to get started with Coupler.io? Sign up here.

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Reviews

Printify Review: Is Drop Shipping Right for Your Business?

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If you’re interested in signing up for Printify, you can help us out by using this link.

If you’ve been involved in ecommerce in the past few years, you’ve undoubtedly heard about drop shipping.

As online retail expands, drop shipping services like Printify help keep supply flush with demand. Basically, they connect your store to outside suppliers and wholesalers. Customers still buy from your store, but the product is produced, stored, and/or shipped by a third party.

In Printify’s case, apparel is their game. They’re one of the more popular drop shipping suppliers, boasting dozens of products and integrations with Shopify, Wix, Etsy, and much more.

Drop shipping has its ups and downs. It’s an easy, affordable solution for retail supply, but it takes inventory and quality control out of your hands. Is Printify right for you? Let’s take a look.

How to start using Printify

You can get started with Printify using a simple sign-up. While it acts as an intermediary for your online store, you don’t need to already have a store set up to get started.

Printify pricing

Right off the bat, I was pleasantly surprised by how much you can do with Printify without signing up for a premium service. In theory, small retailers can get by using Printify without ever paying for the service (they’ll still have to pay for the products, of course).

Whether or not you choose to upgrade is really dependent on how many customers you have. Free users can run up to 5 stores and create unlimited designs, but the Premium tier comes with a discount on products and up to 10 stores.

If you’re lucky enough to get really big (like, 10k orders a day big), you can upgrade even further with a custom Enterprise plan. These plans come with unlimited stores, API integrations, and early access to new features.

In sum, you don’t really have to worry about paying for Printify itself. The real cost comes from the products themselves, which range from $5 sticker sheets to $70 comforters. Essentially, you don’t have to start spending money until you start making money.

What does Printify do?

We’ve already touched on the basic features of a drop shipping service, but let’s take a closer look at Printify’s ecommerce solutions.

Dashboard

When you sign up for Printify, you’re greeted with a checklist on your home dashboard to help you get started. The process is broken down into five steps:

  1. Creating your account (already covered!)
  2. Designing a product
  3. Naming your store
  4. Adding personal details
  5. Connecting to your site/store

After that, you’re golden!

Let’s break down each of these steps (excluding creating an account, obvi).

Product catalog

Printify’s catalog includes an impressive array of different products you can sell. You might expect the standard array of shirts: tees, tanks, hoodies, long-sleeve, sportswear, with sizing for men, women, and kids.

Beyond that, though, there are some unexpected picks. You can set your store apart with shoes, pants, backpacks, mylar balloons, blankets, bento boxes, and the list goes on.

Product design

All in all, Printify purports to sell over 600 different products. However, for the sake of this review, let’s explore the design tools with a classic tank top.

How much you can customize your designs depends on which product you’re designing and which supplier you use. Each product comes with a laundry list of suppliers who offer different prices, discounts, and colors.

In this case, tanks designed by Awkward Styles are over $1 cheaper than SwiftPod. However, SwiftPod comes in more colors, offers bulk discounts, and offers you more room to place designs on the shirts.

The actual design tool isn’t much more impressive than your standard custom t-shirt site. You’ll have to do your actual design work elsewhere and import your work here through Google Drive, Dropbox, or direct upload.

One neat feature is the ability to add images directly from Shutterstock. You’ll have to pay for the use of these images, but only after you sell, and at a reasonable $0.99 per product.

Setting up your store

The process of setting up your store, from the Printify side of things, is fairly simple. Your storefront comes later, but all Printify needs to know is your store name and business information, such as your email and physical address.

In a way, the limitations of this setup can be compared to the limits of designing items with Printify. It may be the cheapest, most convenient way to get set up with an online store, but a lot of the actual work has to be done offsite. In this case…

Connecting to your store

Printify is something of a middleman between your store and their suppliers. As such, while it invites you to name and input details for your store, the store itself has to be set up somewhere else.

Printify offers easy integration with eight different ecommerce platforms. You can connect to Shopify, Etsy, Squarespace, Wix, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, PrestaShop, and eBay.

While this is a relatively small gallery, it does cover a lot of bases for ecommerce. Platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce are specifically geared towards ecommerce. Etsy and eBay appeal to newcomers, setting up mini-storefronts on a broader shopping platform. Wix and Squarespace let you build your site from scratch, offering fully custom options.

Conclusion: Should you be using Printify?

For what it is, Printify is a solid tool to connect your ecommerce site to merchandise. You should know what to expect going in so you don’t wind up disappointed. It’s mostly helpful for printing logos and small designs onto products to be sold.

I’d say Printify is most ideal for sites that produce branded merch. While their selection is wide, I found their tools somewhat limiting when it comes to designing products. Even if you just make silly t-shirts, you may find yourself stifled by Printify’s custom options.

I was definitely impressed with Printify’s array of products. On top of every standard merch item you could think of, they’ve got oddities like balloons, scented candles, and Christmas tree ornaments. 

On the other hand, I could see the variety of suppliers presenting an issue for big stores. Competitors like Printful are pricier but more standardized. If you have different items shipping from different suppliers, it can create customer service issues.

Overall, Printify is a flawed but convenient option for ecommerce. Working with various vendors lets them bring you and your customers the best value. However, it results in hit-or-miss quality and somewhat limited design options.

Final rating: 6.8/10 👕

Ready to get started with Printify? Sign up here.

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