Mandrillapp.com (Mandrill) is a great tool for sending/relaying emails especially from custom built websites and wordpress websites. We have used it the past few users to replay customer receipts, password requests emails ect. for our personal sites as well as sites like projectorsuperstore.com and ccsprojects.com and it performed beautifully. Not only that, we could use the mobile app to verify receipt, see how many times the recipient opened it and even resend if we needed to.
If you dont know what Mandrill is, here is the web explanation….
Mandrill is a transactional email product from the people who brought you MailChimp. Mandrill is designed to help applications or websites that need to send transactional email like password resets, order confirmations, and welcome messages. Technically, though, you can send any legal, non-spam emails through Mandrill.
Mandrill has announced that on April 27, 2016 all users of their free service need to either have a Paid Monthly MailChimp account or loose the service. ( I dont blame them, it is a great services. So is MailChimp).
If you don’t have the funds to run a paid MailChimp account (starts as low as $9.00 a month), then you need to find an alternative.
And in steps SparkPost. They have offered to pick up where Mandrill is leaving off and honor the same pricing model as well as provide a free account that includes up to 100,000 emails a month.
Mandrill To SparkPost migration guide.
One Minor Issue….
We decided to start making the move from Mandrill to SparkPost but we ran into a little hick-up. GoDaddy Managed WordPress Hosting.
For WordPress sites, SparkPost offers a plug-in. “GREAT”, and SparkPost supports port 587 (default) and 2525 as an alternative.
Well would’nt you know it. – GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress hosting accounts have those two ports closed. Through a GoDaddy VPS server you are fine. – but we run our WP sites on GD’s Managed WP Hosting because we have had issues with WP sites on their VPS servers and they told us that their VPS server with cPanel is not really built to support WP sites. (That is what they said)
SparkPost is working on a resolution to reslove this issue via the plugin, but if this does not happen between now and then, what do we do?
We are going to contact a few hosts that specialize in WordPress hosting and find out whom has those two ports opened.
In the meantime, if you need to test your host, we found tool/site that lets check for open ports. Simply enter your websites IP address and the port you want to test. http://ping.eu/port-chk/ It reports back OPENED or CLOSED.