Mastering the Email Ecosystem Part II: Sender Reputation

Why Sender Reputation Matters

The email marketer’s job seems easy. Craft the perfect message, click send, and wait for leads and sales to pour in. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way. When you hit send, some of your emails might arrive in the inbox. Others could land in the junk box, also known as the spam folder. Worse still, your emails might not be delivered at all and you could become deferred or blacklisted. Deliverability depends largely on your sender reputation, a measure of your trustworthiness as a email sender. Knowing what happens after you hit send can improve your reputation, deliverability, and campaign ROI.

A costly chain reaction

Last time we discussed the four providers involved in your email campaigns and the tricky relationships they have with one another. Let’s look at how your sender reputation affects these relationships.

If your email habits suggest you’re a spammer, email service providers (ESPs) and blacklist providers might add your IP address to the blacklist. Your ISP might not want to keep you on their IP because your bad habits affect their reputation, too. This scenario could cost you thousands of dollars in fines and remediation.

When an ISP blocks your ESP, your delivery will come to a standstill. You can switch to a different ESP, but that takes time and there are costs associated with migration and downtime. Additionally, there are only so many ESPs, and you will soon run out of options. Even if you’re not blacklisted yet, having your emails land in the junk box affects your domain reputation and can eventually lead to blacklisting.

What you can do

Utilize reputation measuring tools to get an idea of your sender reputation. Be aware, however, that this doesn’t offer real-time tracking, and even with a perfect reputation your delivery is not guaranteed could be hitting the junk box. (Remember that spam traps can receive, open, and even click on your campaigns.)

There isn’t a simple answer or one metric to watch when it comes to deliverability and sender reputation. Monitoring for both active and inactive threats in your email list can reduce the number of spam traps, honeypots, moles, bots, bounces, grey listings, and more that hurt your reputation. The best way to stay on top of these threats is through regular list hygiene and verification.

Bottom line: Your sender reputation is a complex rating based on a number of factors that can be difficult to fully understand, but one thing is certain. Sender reputation is directly related to your email campaign deliverability. The better your sender reputation, the better the chances your email will reach your targets so you can make money.

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