Migrating To Mailgun
6 Minutes, 12 Second
Written By John Marx
Switching from Sendgrid to Mailgun was one of the hardest decisions to do but also one of the best decisions for not only ourselves but our clients. The prices are the same but that is where the similarities end. In this article I am going to list why we switched which is obviously going to be biased as we did switch and why we switched.
I think before we get into the categories below which are in no particular order other than the order they popped into my head as well as where they are in my notes as I learned about a specific feature. With everything below, I am not saying Sendgrid doesn’t have these capabilities or anything. Just that since using Mailgun they are either more exposed or exist.
We have over 100 domains that send emails and with Sendgrid we had a single username/password. I loved it as it did make setup quick and fast. Mailgun though does it differently and pushed us to use a separate username/password. At first this upset me as I was like I could be done in a matter of an hour and instead it took me 14 hours to migrate every domain over.
After I got through the first five I realized (epiphany moment) that this was better. If we had a bad performer (e.g. a client that was spamming) it would only effect that one client and not our other clients. This alone made it better but then I realized we have clients that have external systems of their own that this service would be a tremendous win for them. We could create additional users for each of those applications and further lock items down.
DNS setup happens just once but that doesn’t mean it should be hard. With Sendgrid we had five DNS settings and Mailgun four. Seems simple enough but it gets better. The encryption validation is unique with Mailgun for each domain.
Sendgrid I had the exact same DNS settings for the DKIM key which is used to authenticate a domain. By being separate for each it does make setting up Mailgun harder (copy/paste compared to just hitting the down arrow). The benefit though is more security and trust for outbound email which is a core reason to moving to Mailgun.
When we signed up with Sendgrid we had to jump through hoops to make showing as a trusted sender work with Gmail and other providers. With Mailgun everything was seamless and the extra steps per domain are a lot more efficient.
The reporting is more detailed and is allowing me to further improve the outbound email reputation of our clients.
With Mailgun we’ve taken are reputation management from just reviews and mentions on social media to our client’s email reputation as well. This further sets us out and allows us to be proactive for our clients where even users using Gmail or Office 365 cannot. This to us is a huge benefit.
We all live in a world that pricing is important and Mailgun costs a tad less with no hidden overages. Overages may not seem like a lot at being fractions of a penny but over a month can added up to a sizable amount. Knowing that the price is less as well as nothing is hidden makes me feel more confident with such a transparent solution.
Saturday morning, I emailed Mailgun questions and within an hour was able to get an response and answer to my question. Knowing that I have a team that responds and doesn’t wait until the next day for a 24x7 operation like ours makes using this service critical to the success of our company’s growth.
I used the logging in Sendgrid daily. I am doing so with Mailgun as well to look at transactions that were bounced, blocked, or failed for any reason. With Mailgun though there’s an added bonus. Previously I had to let the client know they had to go into their sent items and re-send. This is all well and good but when you are finding this out at 8pm at night the client wouldn’t get it to the next day. Now we have the option to resend a message and it automatically goes off without making our client do the lifting and further enhancing our customer service for them.
We had several issues with Sendgrid and sending to Yahoo in particular. Ever sense they’re being sold and trying to fix their security issues sending email to Yahoo has been a nightmare. I know we aren’t the only one with this heartache. Since switching to Mailgun every Yahoo issue we were facing each week has completely dropped away saving a couple of hours of customer support issues. This adds up to over two weeks of employee savings per year.
I consider myself security minded. All my passwords are completely randomly generated, not words, and 36-characters in length. Mailgun automatically creates passwords and they are all 50-characters in length. They are also completely randomly generated and not words. I consider my password practices to be above the standard and yet Mailgun uses even better passwords.
As we’ve moved there are a few features we are excited to be looking at adding to our own internal Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. These are:
- Email address validation – Will allow us to make certain email addresses entered are valid email addresses.
- Inbound emails – Make it so that the CRM system can use a Mailgun email for sending and receiving correspondence and tracking.
Why developer focus you might wonder. When it comes to reliability when there is a problem you need people that talk and think analytically in an agile manner. This means that Mailgun is a company that can quickly adapt to changing conditions and is on the cusp of the latest technology to help your business grow.
With all the good…
I will say with all that I love about Mailgun there are a few items I don’t like. I will say I have scheduled a phone call demo to go over items as they may exist, but I haven’t found them yet. These are:
- Logs (Centralized) – Logs are all decentralized for each domain which makes perfect sense. With over 100 domains having a rollup where I can see any failures, bounces, etc. would be a huge administrative value.
- Static IP – One of the static IP’s we have has a bad reputation and we had to requested removal on Office 365. It only took an hour to fix but knowing this was a previously used we couldn’t done more than a blacklist check.
Email is crucial to any business today. Having great reporting, customer service, fair pricing, email sending reputation, and reliability is critical. The reliability of Mailgun is by far the best I have ever used. I will date myself saying I have been working directly with email sending since 1995 (the beginning). If you need a reliable transactional mail service that today Mailgun is the service I strongly recommend.
You can learn more about Mailgun at https://www.mailgun.com/.
Note: Mailgun has no idea I am writing this and is sponsored in no way. This is my opinion and my opinion alone.