4 First-rate Email Verification Tools for Pardot Users

Email addresses are the lifeblood of any email marketing strategy.

Incorrect, old or dummy email addresses are all examples of bad data which can cause havoc with your Pardot account. Bad data is the source of high email bounce rates, leading directly to poor deliverability and skewed email reporting.

Database quality and marketing integrity are front of mind, especially in this GDPR hangover period; however, the need for clean email address data will never fade away.

Pardot marketers ask for the best way to verify email addresses in their marketing database, including both incoming email addresses before they touch Pardot (eg. from lead capture webforms) and routine verification for their existing database.

Although there is no built-in functionality within Pardot, there are 3rd party tools that can do the job. These tools give each email address a status – eg. ‘Active’/‘Valid’, ‘Invalid’ etc. The good news is that using these external vendors is neither time-consuming or costly.

I set out to evaluate the market, and chose 4 tools to recommend to Pardot users; but before I go into these, here are factors to consider when choosing a data verification provider.

Choosing an Email Verification Provider – Some Considerations

  • Budget: subscription-based or pay-as-you-go?
  • Volume: how many email addresses will you need to verify?
  • Integration: do you want to plug directly into Pardot, or are you happy to import the data periodically?
  • Storage: where you want to store the verification status data (ie. do you want to avoid putting it into Salesforce)?

1. Neverbounce

Neverbounce is one service that I use often, who claim to offer the ‘most accurate verification on the market’. It’s an interesting story – formerly a digital marketing agency, this tool was born directly from frustrations; what started as an internal tool has now ballooned into a 75k+ customer-base.

Real-time email verification analyses your data file, and returns an overall % of dirty data – for free. I trust this tool, especially after testing this out; I ran a couple of poor quality lists through the tool after a high-bounce email had been sent – Neverbounce was spot-on! The email cleaning is a paid for service that gives each email address a status category (valid, invalid, catch-all, unknown) – details on pricing are included at the end of this section.

Hot off the press! Neverbounce have released an integration with Pardot. You can import Pardot Lists in the Neverbounce interface, requiring only your Salesforce/Pardot login details (once you have done the initial setup). Feeding the results back into Pardot is just as simple – a custom field named “neverBounceValidationResult” will be created to store the NeverBounce validation result. Full details can be found here. Also, check out their javascript widget for Pardot forms.

Concerns about data transfer and storage security? They’ve got this covered in their Privacy Shield documentation.

A defining asset of Neverbounce, in my opinion, is their sharp and attentive support team. One of the team is Rachel Kostura, whose enthusiasm is unrivalled – she said: “Our mission is to ensure our customers are successful in achieving their deliverability goals. At NeverBounce, we earn the trust of our clients by delivering on our four core values: accuracy, speed, price and support.

Pricing

Based on a typical Pardot database of 10,000 prospects:

Email cleaning service: $50 (includes a bulk discount). Purchase via credit card.

Data file analysis is free.

Find out more.

2. BriteVerify

BriteVerify were founded in 2009 and pride themselves on being market pioneers. Since then, they have grown rapidly, with their customer base increasing from 500-40,000 in one particularly busy 3 year period! Product and headcount growth has been fuelled by tactical acquisitions, and in June 2018, BriteVerify themselves were acquired by Validity.

Two BriteVerify offerings are list verification and built-in email address validation on web forms (BriteVerify REST API). The list verification service will analyse your data file, and return email errors by cause, eg: Invalid Address, Invalid Domain, Invalid Account. You are able to download errors from Briteverify and import into a Pardot custom field, as an “export-import-export-import” sequence. Then, you are free to segment good data from bad data using Pardot’s segmentation features.

Mike Means, the in-house Pardot expert, told me: “BriteVerify is also a Pardot user and we have to clean our own data from time to time!”.

Pricing

When it comes to pricing, one of their taglines is: “starts at under a Penny Per Email”. Based on a typical Pardot database of 10,000 prospects:

Email cleaning service: $100 = ($0.001/email). Purchase via credit card.

Find out more.

3. Experian

Experian are perhaps most well-known in the personal finance space, for services such as the credit score checker – but, their services have a much wider reach. One lesser-known Experian offering is their email validation service. You can generate a free validation summary, like the one pictured below:

You will find their app listed on the Salesforce AppExchange, which will verify and standardise email, address and phone data at the point of entry – in this case, Salesforce record pages when users are viewing and editing Lead and Contact data. It’s good to know that verification can be done both in real time and in bulk mode. If email address data is being validated in Salesforce, this will, in turn, be reflected in Pardot too (so long as users are not importing directly into Pardot and by-passing the Salesforce validation)!

This vendor is likely to be more attractive for enterprise-level organisations, according to the price point, and accepted at that level because of its established brand name.

Pricing

Based on a typical Pardot database of 10,000 prospects:

Email cleaning service: $330 ($0.033/email)

(NB: there is a minimum cost of around $65).

Salesforce AppExchange Listing

4. Snov.io

Snovio is a simple, lightweight service, similar to Neverbounce and BriteVerify, with email verification speed one of a few competitive differentiators they claim.  

A marketing email from Snovio landed in my inbox the other day, advertising their new Chrome extension – very effective for ‘web-scraping’, seen below:

Something else that stood out to me is that they aggregate data from other services to produce less Catch-all email statuses. Catch-all results are often frustrating for users: ‘Will it bounce? Will it not bounce?!’ – you don’t know whether to keep or cut from your email send lists.

Snovio also has a whole host of other services, including domain search (enter a domain name to find email addresses), LinkedIn email search, prospect search (explore their database to find more prospects), company search (if you know the city, industry and country, Snovio will get the company profile). Of course, it’s up to you to use these features sensibly in line with Permission-based marketing with GDPR now in effect.

The interface is below:

Pricing

Based on a typical Pardot database of 10,000 prospects:

$49/month

The free plan is limited to 200 email address checks (/account/month), but excludes CSV export (which you would need to use in conjunction with Pardot). CSV export is included in all paid plans, the most basic of which starts at $19/month. 

Summary

This post has featured 4 email verification tools I can recommend to Pardot users, that suit marketers with varying needs. The information will hopefully point you in the right direction when seeking an email verification tool, but first consider your budget, volume, type of integration and storage to find a good fit for you.