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Mastering Email Marketing Part III: 8 Best Practices to Prevent Deliverability Troubles

Mastering Email Best Practices

Actually getting your email to the inbox can be harder than you might think given today’s harsh email ecosystem. Monitoring your bounce rate is a good first step, but plenty of threats are deliverable. Moles, trackers, disposable domains, spam traps, scammers, and bots are just some of the threats that could hurt your deliverability without bouncing. The worst part is that on the surface they look like good email addresses. In reality, they present many dangers to your domain and your IP address reputation.While an opt-in strategy is also a good email practice, keep in mind that spam traps can be delivered, trackers can open your email, and robots can click. If you are comfortable not prospecting, mailing only to responders seems like a good idea, too, until you realize that many authentic customers submit fake email addresses to avoid marketing campaigns. These disposable domains pose delivery threats and need to be identified .

By implementing email hygiene and verification, you can protect your email reputation, maximize marketing ROI, mitigate conversion threats, and increase customer engagement. Additionally, adopting some next-level best practices will further increase your success.

  1. Monitor open rates.

Your open rate won’t tell you if you have honeypots or spam traps on your list, because even spam traps can open emails, but this metric is important to monitor. Ensure you have optimal open rates by avoiding spammy headlines and phrases in your content and spammy punctuation, such as multiple exclamation points. Simple, to-the-point content works best. Open rates vary by industry but should hover around 20{d3045b5e992ac15c9213e67a597f3fd4186f176ca13563581eb5ff0490d51a0b}.

  1. Improve click-through rates.

Improve your click-through rates by including a clear call to action that is segmented according to the interests of those on your list. Follow the same rules for simple content as #1 above. Click-through rates vary by industry but should be somewhere between 1.25 and 4{d3045b5e992ac15c9213e67a597f3fd4186f176ca13563581eb5ff0490d51a0b}. Keep in mind, however, that spam traps and honeypots might be who’s clicking on your links.

  1. Implement double opt-in protocols.

Ensure your subscribers are real and that they really want to hear from you by using a double opt-in strategy. Each subscriber will receive an email asking them to click a link to confirm their subscription. This greatly reduces fake, non-existent, or old emails getting added to your list. However, be aware that while double opt-in is a best practice that isn’t universally adopted and your email protection strategy does not stop there.

  1. Avoid purchased lists like the plague.

Email addresses on a purchased list might have been scraped from the web. They could be pure spam traps just waiting to ruin your sender reputation. You also have no way of knowing if these people are interested in hearing from you, so your ROI isn’t likely to be high even if your emails get delivered. It is important to note that appending additional information to your first-party data is a different approach altogether and does not carry the same risk as outright list purchasing.

  1. Segment subscribers by activity.

Are subscribers regularly opening your emails? If not, you might try re-engagement tactics, like sending an enticing email with a free offer or coupon. If they still don’t bite, consider dropping them off your list or asking specifically if they still want to hear from you. Segmentation will also help your unsubscribe rate, which should average about 0.5{d3045b5e992ac15c9213e67a597f3fd4186f176ca13563581eb5ff0490d51a0b}.

  1. Improve database methodologies.

Implement a process, such as scheduled or automated email verification, for addressing typos and misspellings. This is particularly important if you collect email addresses at points of sale. Cashiers can easily make data entry errors in their haste to serve customers quickly.

  1. Perform regular hygiene AND verification.

Give your email marketing a regular health check that includes both hygiene and verification. Think of email hygiene as your threat check and email verification as your deliverability check. Since new threats pop up daily, for best results use an experienced provider who has access to the latest, real-time threats.

  1. Properly authenticate email messages

Consumers are often skeptical of fraudulent messages and email phishing, distinguish yourself as a legitimate sender by implementing DKIM, DMARC & TLS so your messages are verified as authentic.  Not only is this a best practice, but it will also improve your deliverability.


If you would like to learn more about improving your email deliverability with Webbula’s email list hygiene and verification, contact us or call 888.993.2285.


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