So, your emails are landing in the junk folder or even worse, they not even getting into the subscriber’s mailbox.
As soon as this happens, the concept of deliverability comes to light. And to be honest, this is a bit of a dark art.
The large email providers like Office 365, Gmail and Yahoo don’t really give much information away as to why an email hits the junk folder.
This is where deliverability comes into play.
Deliverability, however, has a few hurdles to get through.
Let’s tackle each of them to get some practical tips on solving deliverability problems together:
1. Technical Issues
Email marketing is a deep rabbit hole of knowledge and settings. With email being the oldest form of communication (on the net), it makes sense that a lot of technology has been built up around it to help prevent spam and phishing attacks.
Luckily, there are some tools out there that will check your email for you and tell you if there are any problems, like these favourites:
The way this works is pretty simple – If you go to one of these sites, you will be given a temporary email address. Simply send over a test message to the provided email address from within your Email Service Provider (ESP) platform and head back to the email testing website to view the report. You can then fix as needed.
This is the one with the most impact on getting to the inbox. Think of this as your historic footprint of how your emails have been received.
Your sending will either be on a shared IP range, or you will have your own IP. If you are on a shared range, then this problem needs to be escalated to your ESP. The ESP has probably produced some bad traffic emanating from their shared IPs which needs sorting out.
If you have your own IPs, awesome! This pretty much means you are in charge of your own reputation.
If you have just started sending on these IPs, then you need to check if they “warmed“. If these IPs have not warmed, then your emails will most likely be blocked or bounced. Ask your ESP to do this for you.
Ok, so you have been sending for a while and you have your own IPs, but you are still landing in the junk folder. To begin checking and rectifying this, get your IP addresses from your ESP and head over to this site and check your score:
You generally want your score to be in the high 90s. If this is low, then you potentially have a reputation problem. This means that you will need to do some list management tasks as well as engagement tasks with your list and sending. (There’s a lot we do here for clients, so please reach out if you want help with this)
The next step is to check blacklists. These lists are managed by companies that identify spammers and then list their servers. The way they identify a spammer is through complaints and spam traps.
Head over to this page and enter your IP to see if you are blacklisted in any way:
If you are listed on a blacklist, you can request delisting through various links and you will be shown which link to use inside HetrixTools.
Not all blacklists are equal though. Some of them do not have any effect on your deliverability and some have a major impact. The best bet is to avoid all of them to be safe.
3. Track record
There is a rolling window that the behaviour towards your emails is recorded. This can be done on a group level, so all the emails you send to Gmail/Yahoo/O365, or it can be done on a user level.
Getting your audience to open, click or reply to your email campaigns is a critical task.
But if you are stuck right now, you can do a simple thing to jump-start the engagement. Before we discuss this, let’s first sort out your policies and procedures.
Make sure you don’t have spam traps (ask us if you need help with this). Make sure you don’t have unengaged or “Zombie” email accounts. Declutter and cull. It really helps.
Produce an incentive to get people clicking and replying to your emails. A competition, some question you may pose them, something that draws attention. Get your creativity flowing.
Once you have a good incentive for people to engage with you, segment out all the engaged people in your database (Again, reach out to us if you need help doing this). Once you have your engaged audience, send the incentive email to entice engagement again.
If possible, wait a while before sending again.
On your next send, bring in a small percentage of your newly disengaged audience. Continue this process by including more and more of your disengaged audience members before sending again.
Getting to the inbox requires consistent monitoring as well. Just because you are getting into Gmail, does not mean you getting into Office 365 or Yahoo.
There are a few other things that can be done behind the scenes, and we would love to have you as a VIP client to illustrate the work our expert team of email marketers can do.
Feel free to contact us if you have a deliverability issue. Simply pop an email to email@example.com – We’d love to hear from you!