Avoid These 4 Gotchas to Keep Email Deliverability High

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Integrated marketers revel in the power, ease and convenience of today’s high-flying email-marketing platforms. Customization and capabilities, including data analytics, have never been better or more accessible.

Why, then, have email deliverability rates dropped more than 10 percent in the last two years?

And why, with smarter marketers using ever-better tools, do nearly one in four emails go missing or end up languishing in recipients’ spam folders?

At least one reason described below may surprise you.

The Pursuit of Perfection

The deliverability goal of every email marketing campaign is 100%–every message landing unperturbed in a valid, even welcoming, inbox with zero messages getting lost or bouncing back to the sender (aka 0% bounce rate).

Of course, for a variety of reasons–some obvious, some not–such perfection remains elusive:

  • Poor list hygiene–smart marketers regularly prune or scrub in-house data toKeep Lists Clean and Minty Fresh; for best results, be sure to remove contacts that have been unresponsive for the past 12 months.
  • Not vetting addresses at sign-up–sometimes new list subscribers hurry though sign-up and simply mistype information into your submission/permission form, resulting in an undeliverable address; one way around this is to ensure that all new emails coming into your system meet certain basic formatting criteria, such as including an “@” sign and a valid extension after the dot (such as @gmail.com or @yahoo.com).
  • Malicious competitors–“It can be a mean world out there,” writes author, email marketing executive and expert, Kevin Gao. If a large percentage of your emails suddenly become undeliverable, “It’s possible that competitors have taken to using a black-hat technique of spamming your sign-up list with poor quality addresses, in order to decrease your sender reputation,” Gao cautions. Don’t worry. This forehead-slapper is one that many SMB owners and marketers wouldn’t see coming, either.
  • Forces beyond your control–even the most reliable email service providers can experience unexplainable glitches; if your provider has technical difficulties anytime during your email send/campaign, your deliverability rate could take a hit; likewise if recipients’ email account is full and unable to receive any additional messages.

Other common reasons for high-bounce/low-deliverability rates can include: violating the CAN-SPAM Act; spammy subject lines; and issues related to platform migration.

Visit our Email Marketing Archive to discover proven tips and tricks that help correct these issues and optimize campaign performance and ROI.

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