Email marketing is one of the most effective strategy to attract and connect with your customers. It gives your company to attain customers loyalty and trust. It’s a great tool for many online businesses to market their products and services; and being blocked as an email spammer can be your biggest headache. Competition within business companies who are using email marketing is high and the battle to get into inbox’s between spammers and Internet service providers rages on. For this reason, nearly one in five commercial emails doesn’t make it to inbox and is either shunted to spam folders or blocked altogether.
Small business companies often fall afoul of spam filters, even if they have opt-in email lists that apparently are willing recipients. Many who are new in email marketing start off on the wrong way. They just send mails and hope that someone will click and buy. This is not the proper way on doing email marketing and this will cause you a angry complaints and find your emails blocked as spam.
Ensuring that your email is delivered to the inbox instead of the spam folder can be a significant challenge for marketers’. As email spammers get smarter and find new ways to slip through spam filters, email service providers have responded by improving their spam filters. The good news is, if you follow the rules and guides to build a good, quality email program, you will most likely don’t have a problem getting flagged as spam. To make this work, you need to consistently work to ensure that your email is inbox-ready.
Email Service Providers: What are they checking?
Understanding the list of factors that go into an email service providers algorithm when it decides if your email spam or not is needed to fully provide effective email marketing. Like Google search engine algorithm, many factors of an email service providers spam filter algorithm are secret and not provided to us. They just give specific rules and guides to follow, so that your email will not be flagged as spam. But spammers are also following this rules and guidelines, well, email service providers constantly tweak and update their spam filters. You’ll need to regularly test and stay aware of trends to make sure you’re inbox-ready and won’t be flagged as spam. A general rule, email service provider spam filters will look at the following:
- Blacklist. Follow the rules and guides so you don’t end up on blacklist. You’ll be in blacklist if you are a serious offender. If you’re on a blacklist, it’s time for you to start your email marketing campaign from scratch.
- While List. Unlike the blacklist, a white list is a good thing to be listed on. One goal of marketers is to get on a white list. This will dramatically improve your email deliver-ability.
- Sender Reputation. This is the number or score assigned to your sending IP or source. The higher the score of reputation, the better deliver-ability is acquired.
- Domain Reputation. Email service providers also tracks domain reputation. This could help companies using email marketing, in the other side this could also be a fall for domains with bad reputation.
- Spam Complaints. Most marketers have trouble getting into the inbox and getting their email content to get flagged as a spam. Reducing spam complaints is a good way to start a better email marketing.
- Email Content. The content of your email is important factor in making it through spam filters. The use of images, text content and subject lines can all create spam problems. Writing and designing email has to be as much about deliver-ability as it is about email performance.
Now that you know what email service providers primarily checks on your email, it is time for you to do the things that will avoid being flagged as spam and make it past filters and into the inbox. Here are some effective tips to make your email not to get flagged as spam:
- Build A Great Email List. Building a great email list is the first and most important thing that you can do to establish a great email deliver-ability and avoid being flagged as spam. Sending your lists of customers or subscribers unwanted email will cause you bad reputation. Make sure that the email leads that you have generated for your database came from email sign-up where the users clearly opted-in to your email program. For more security, use a double opt-in procedure where users must confirm an email that they receive after they sign up in order to activate subscription. By doing this method, it will cause you to create smaller email list and acquire subscribers in much difficult way. However, if you just send email to users who do not want your email, it will get you a high number of being marked as spam, and you’ll risk not being able to email to your most valuable subscribers or potential clients.
- Applying for White List. If your building an in-house system, you’ll want to establish reputation so that many email service providers will recognized you and will have the possibility to add you on white list email sender. Yahoo, AOL and other major email service providers have white list applications processes that you can find online and apply for. Unfortunately, many other major email service providers create their white list internally and don’t have actual submissions for it. One more way to get you on white list is for the help of your users or subscribers. The goal is for you to encourage your loyal users to take action. An effective way to accomplish this is to ask them to add you to their contact or address book in the welcome email that they receive when they sign up for your newsletter or email list. It’s not that hard to remind it to your subscribers in every email that you send to them. This will take time and several emails, but this prove you as a sender to be worthy in their inbox and can acquire more trust and loyalty on your subscribers.
- Unsubscribe Link. Providing users a unsubscribe button or link is essential way not to get users flagged your email as spam. Before they get irritated and angry on your emails, they have the opt-on to just unsubscribe to your email list. The reality of the situation is that people will no longer want to receive your email, and they will remove themselves from your email list. When that happens, it’s much more acceptable that they choose to unsubscribe rather than tell an email service provider that you are spam. One important step to stay out of junk or spam folder is to reduce the number of active spam complaints from users. Providing an easily used and easily seen unsubscribe link can reduce spam complaints.
- Content With Minimum Spam Words. Generally, this will seem fairly obvious to email service providers to notice and will filter it as spam email. Too much use of spam words like “free”, “sale” or “credit” will get your content easily noticeable and flagged as spam. Writing content for email marketing can be a very specific process and its likely writing for a Search Engine Optimization page. Properly optimized content can effectively engage users and can attain potential customers or clients.
It’s not hard to avoid being flagged as spam. Getting into the inbox instead of the junk or spam folder seems to be the biggest obstacle of email marketers. Following the rules and guidelines on sending email will significantly improve your email marketing. Overall, using a good quality list of authorized contacts, getting good reputation not just on email service providers but also on users, and creating well optimized and quality email content will get you successful email campaign.