Alternative to Google Groups

Google Groups has been around for over 15 years (launched in 2001) and is very popular with small clubs and groups. Like most of Google services Google Groups is free with Google making it pay by showing ads and analyzing your groups data to better target more ads at you.

Google Groups logo

Google Groups has not had a major update for years, it’s in maintenance mode, they’re keeping it running for existing users but it doesn’t get updated or improved.  Google does have a history of shutting down services that that it no longer considers strategic and Groups would appear to be in that category.

If this makes you worried and you need a modern, secure, reliable way to share news and messages with a group of people why not try an email group with Gaggle Mail.  All you need to participate in an email group is an email address and everyone has one of those.  With Gaggle Mail there’s no need to have a specific email account (I’m looking at you Google and Yahoo!) just use whatever email address you already have.

All groups on Gaggle Mail have a fully searchable message archive, customized subject lines and email footers, web group sign-up, incognito mode for enhanced member privacy and may more features.  Your members will love the simplicity and flexibility of using a modern dedicated group email solution.

If you use Google Groups to run a group discussion list and you’re worried about data privacy or it’s longer term future then give Gaggle Mail a try.

See why thousands of groups have moved to Gaggle Mail with a 30 day free trial.

Alternative to Wiggio

Wiggio is a popular all-singing, all-dancing group membership site.  You can hold virtual meetings, take polls, manage events, share files and create to-do lists.  But by far it’s most popular feature is group communication or put simply – group email. Wiggio logo Group email is something that Gaggle Mail focuses on exclusively, you won’t find all those other group features here but group email is something we do really rather well. By focusing on this one thing we can offer the simplest, most reliable, full featured and best value for money group email solution on the web.

Gaggle Mail archives all messages sent over it and makes them instantly searchable to the group administrators and optionally group members.  You can also enable moderation for groups which means only messages that have been approved by a group administrator gets sent on to the group. Gaggle Mail logoWith customized email footers, a choice of delivery options (reply to group, reply to sender) and full delivery reports, you can see why thousands of groups – large and small - appreciate what a dedicated group email platform can deliver.

However beyond features the thing that separates us from other offerings is the easy and simplicity with which anyone can get started and run a group on Gaggle Mail.

Our motto is “If you can use email, you can use Gaggle Mail” and it’s something we really stand by, creating a group, adding members, sending message and checking the health of the group are all thing’s we’ve put huge effort into making as simple as possible.

So if you want a dedicated group email provider which just works - is full featured but takes ease and simplicity really seriously then take a look at Gaggle Mail.  With a 30 day free trial (no credit card required) and groups from as little as $10 per year you have nothing to loose!

Simply Elegant

Our mission has always been to build the simplest group email system available. Key to this is to make the most intuitive, easy to use and powerful user interface possible. This is something we consider with everything we do at Gaggle Mail. If there’s a new feature that we can’t find a elegant way to add it to the user interface then we won’t add it until we can.

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With this in mind we’ve made some subtle changes to both the group and member management pages which we believe deliver on or goal to create the simplest group email system available.

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Original Sender and Reply To Links in Footer

We’ve recently made some enhancements to the email footer that is added to every email sent over Gaggle Mail.  The default footer now includes the email address of the original sender of the message and a link to reply specifically to the sender.

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The default configuration for a Gaggle Mail email group is that replies go back to the group, this is ideal for encouraging group discussion and sharing information.  However sometimes it can be preferable to just reply to specific person who sent the message and having a reply to link in the footer makes this super easy.

The sender address and reply to link only appear for groups which are configured for replies to go to the group address since this isn’t required when the reply address is already set as the original sender.

You have always been able to customize the footer of messages sent over Gaggle Mail so if you’d prefer not to include the sender information then it’s really easy just to set your own footer.  You can also include the original sender and a reply to link in a custom footer using the replacement tags described here.

We’ve also changed footers to use HTML links where appropriate which gives them a cleaner look.

How Does Group Email Work?

Group email has been around for about 30 years. The idea of sending an email to a single address and it being forwarded to all members of a predefined list is very powerful. Indeed email discussion lists were the forerunner to web based forums as a method of group discussion.

At the heart of any group email system is the group email address, this is the address that anyone from a group can send a message to and have it repeated to the entire group. Members of the group are called subscribers and generally have to opt-in to receive messages from the group. For high traffic lists members can decide if to receive messages as soon as they’re sent of have all messages for a day packaged up into a daily digest.

Restrictions can also be placed on who can send to a group. Most commonly anyone who subscribes to a list can send to that list but some groups can limit sending to just a set of administrators. Alternatively a group could be setup to allow anyone, member or not, to send to a group.

Some group email systems keep an archive of every message sent to the group, these archives often include indexing and search of past messages. Archives for a group email system can act as a source of record for discussions that went over the list.

The main concern of a good group email list system is to successfully deliver messages to the group subscribers. Delivery reports are a way for administrator of the group to check delivery of messages and investigate any delivery problems that may occur.

Group email lists are a simple but very useful tool for any community, group or club that want to communicate over email with little effort.

7 Popular Uses for Group Email

We’re continually surprised at the wide range of uses people find for group email. Here’s a list of the 7 most popular sorts of groups we encounter on Gaggle Mail.

Residents associations. Appartment blocks, assisted living, service personnel or new developments, when people live together they want to communicate together and using a shared email list seems to be a very popular choice.

Sports clubs. I think we’ve seen just about every sport imaginable popup at one time or another on Gaggle Mail. Sharing news, sending out results or asking for volunteers the ubiquity of email means everyone it always on the ball.

Religious groups. Just like sport I think we’ve got most religions covered and some non-religions – Jediism anyone? It doesn’t matter what your technical level is, particiapting with a group email list is incredabilly easy for anyone.

Gaming groups.
Video gaming, D&D or just cards they’re all here. Some of the geekier groups will run a custom Listserv setup on a home brew Linix distro from their basement but for the rest of us, who just need something that works with a few clicks there’s Gaggle Mail.

Families. We already blogged about this a few weeks ago but young or old, rich or poor families find group email to be a very easy way to keep each other up to date.

Non Profits. Whether it’s the board of directors or someone looking for a volunteer to cover Saturday night at the soup kitchen loads of non-profits and charities use group email to keep everyone up to date with what’s going on.

Book clubs. They’re as popular as ever and as well as meeting up to talk about books they’ve read, book clubs love to use group email to write about what they’ve reading. A shared email address is very handy when planning that next meeting or checking up that everyone has done their homework!

There it is, our list of seven. There’s plenty more we could of mentioned but with the versitility of email it’s no wonder that thousands of people find a group shared email address as the simplest and easiest way to stay in touch.

An Alternative To Listserv

Listserv has been the gold standard in group email for over 30 years.  It’s an industry grade solution that gives you complete flexibility and when running on the right hardware, lots of capacity.

Listserv does however require a lot of technical knowledge to setup and maintain. There are hosted versions of Listserv which remove some of the headaches but that can be very expensive.

Gaggle Mail is a cost effective and easy to use alternative to Listserv.  With just a few clicks you can create a highly customisable group email list for up to 1000 members.  Track the delivery of every message sent to your group with clear delivery reports and get a fully searchable archive of all messages sent.

We support custom domains, daily digests and lots of other features for running a group email list that you and your members will love!

If you need to run huge group email lists for thousands of members then Listserv is what you want, if you need a quick and inexpensive solution that just works – give Gaggle Mail a look.

Prices start from as little as $10 per year and there’s a 30 day free trial (no credit card required).

Bigger Lists and New Pricing

At Gaggle Mail our top focus has always been to deliver the simplest, most easy to use group email system.  This simplicity can be seen in our pricing when we first launched; just one pricing level of $2/month or $10/year for up to 100 members.

One size fits all pricing is great for simplicity however since launch the number one request from users has been – can you support groups with over 100 members?

So today I’m delighted to announce that we now support groups up to 1000+ members and with that come’s a new stepped pricing model.

Affordable group email for small groups

We’ve tried to maintain our simple approach to pricing with this new structure, all pricing levels include all features, it’s simply the maximum number of members which varies with the different pricing level.  Billing is still available on a monthly or annual basis to give you flexibility about when you pay.

We hope you find these prices competitive especially when you compare them to the alternative of running a Listserv either on your own hardware or hosted somewhere.  And remember with every Gaggle Mail group you the simplest most easy to use group email system with all these incredible features.

Getting Your Message Delivered

Making sure messages get successfully delivery is one of the main goals of any group email list and we’re just made it even easier to check group members are receiving their messages.

Every message sent over Gaggle Mail has a delivery report associated with it that shows when everybody received that message and if there are any delivery failures. This feature is only available to list administrators who can access it by clicking “Delivery Report” in the bottom left hand corner of any message in the messages view.

Group email delivery report

Any members which had difficulty receiving a message will be listed at the top and you can click on them to see further details about a delivery failure.

Simple to use individual group email list delivery report

In here you can see the exact details of the delivery failure and some advice about what to do next.

Delivery failures are usually either a hard-bounce, soft-bounce, spam or rejected. You can read more and different types of delivery failures here or more about this feature here.

As with all of Gaggle Mail we’ve tried to make this feature simple to use but with enough flexibility to get the job done. We hope you agree and as we continue to build Gaggle Mail into the easiest to use group email solution available if you have any suggests how we could improve please let us know.