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Emailing is an invaluable tool when it comes to advertising and keeping potential customers in the know. However, when your emails end up in someone’s spam folder, this invaluable tool is rendered useless; it is therefore important that you do everything you can to ensure that your carefully composed email campaign actually makes it into your prospective customers’ main inbox.
What You Need to Know About Spam Filters
When judging whether or not the emails you’ve sent are spam, spam filters consider multiple factors which, added together, allows the system to come up with a score. If your spam score is above the threshold for spam, your emails will not make it into your customers’ inbox. This list of criteria is always changing and adapting, making it difficult to produce a fail-proof method to avoid the spam folder. However, there are a number of ways in which you can increase your chances of your emails ending up where you want them to:
Acquire Customer Consent
A few ways you can get customers’ permission includes: giving an option to sign up to emails on your website, either on the main page or after purchasing a product; asking customers to sign up to your emailing list in person, if you have a shop that your customers frequent or; sending an email directly to ask if they want to receive promotional emails in the future. Doing this decreases the chances of your prospective customers clicking the “mark as spam” button, which, in turn, lowers the chance of your emails being filtered out by a spam filter in the future.
A great way to protect your email hygiene is by installing an email validation API at the point of registration. The API will prevent misspelled and other unsafe email addresses from signing up on your list.
Avoid Buying Mail Lists
Although the idea of thousands of potential new customers can be enticing, this method is highly unlikely to rein in any new customers at all. Worse than this, with the multitudes of people you’ll be inconvenienced, your emails are bound to be marked as spam. This, in turn, will affect the reputation of your IP address and will affect your spam score when sending future emails.
It’s best to grow your own healthy, powerful email list. Also, pruning it is essential to your email marketing performance. Whenever you notice your bounce rate exceeding 2%, search for an email verification service and let it remove unwanted contacts.
Choose an Email Service Provider with a Good Reputation
If the Email Service Provider (ESP) you’re using has a reputation for delivering spam, its IP address will likely be recognized by spam filters, and any emails that you send to prospective customers will automatically end up in the junk folder. Therefore, you should use an ESP known for representing clients who send legitimate emails, to increase your chances of ending up in your customers’ inbox.
Make Sure You Aren’t On a Blacklist
If your IP address already has a bad reputation, or you haven’t been careful with who you’re emailing, and with what, you may already be classified as a blacklisted sender. If so, spam filters will likely recognize your blacklisted status and deliver your emails straight into your customers’ spam folders.
To check if you are a blacklisted sender, you can submit your IP address or domain name to an online tool, such as UltraTools or MxToolbox, which will inform you whether or not you’re blacklisted.
Test Your Emails
Various online tools have been designed to allow you to access your email’s spam score by running your emails through spam filters. Being aware of your score means that, if it’s underneath the spam threshold, you can relax knowing that your emails will most likely reach the inbox of the majority of your potential customers. However, if the score is above the spam threshold, you know to edit your emails to try and bring the score down, rather than send emails destined straight for the spam folder.
Try to Avoid Using Spam Trigger Words and Phrases
Such as: cash, claims, credit, discount, money, free, no obligation – to name just a few. You should look at online lists of words flagged by spam filters to ensure that your emails contain as few as possible – particularly in the subject line; this will help to keep your email score below the threshold for spam.
Get a Certificate
Certain third parties online can provide certificates which guarantees to ESPs that you aren’t a spammer. These third parties assess your methods of emailing, and the emails themselves. From this, they can provide certification which relays to ESPs that you are a trusted sender.
If you use even a few of the methods suggested on this list, you are well on your way to ensuring that your emails end up exactly where you want them to, with a spam score below the threshold and a reputation that does justice to your company or brand. By emailing responsibly, acquiring your email lists ethically and making consistent use of email validation, you are sure to avoid the junk folder.