Everybody hates spam emails. Your painfully constructed brilliant marketing email landing in the spam folder is even more horrible. Unfortunately, there is no way to find out if your emails are going into the detestable spam folder after you dispatch them. Typical. Fortunately, we’ve written up a list of considerations for your next killer email campaign to avoid the spam folder.
1. Ask subscribers to add you to their contact list
This one’s easy. Simply ask subscribers to add the email address you send emails from to their contact list. This way, you’ll always hit those inboxes…well, if everyone adds your email.
2. Verify email addresses
Sending a verification email when people sign up to your email list means that the email addresses you do collect are real ones, free from the dreaded typo. It also affirms the user’s intention to receive your content, meaning they’re less likely to unsubscribe.
3. Check if you’ve been blacklisted
Are you a baddie? A simple IP address blacklist check will see if your IP address appears on the DNSBL or SURBL systems. These systems are what email service providers reference to land emails into spam. There are so many of these little tools to use, like DNS Checker, WhatIsMyIP and MX Toolbox, and it’s a quick and simple process.
4. Become email certified
Not many people know about this one, so doing this may make you leader of the competitor pack. Did you know that you can get a certification from a third party that tells internet service providers that you’re genuine? A certification from somewhere like Return Path costs money but will dramatically increase your chances of escaping the jaws of the spam folder.
5. Practice good email list hygiene
Everybody loves good hygiene and email lists are no different. Make sure that your email list is as clean as a whistle. There are many ways to do this, including removing hard bounces from your list, removing anyone who tells you via any form of communication that they don’t want to be on your list anymore and you better make sure that everyone on your list agreed to be there. Never, ever, ever buy email lists! This is against GDPR regulations and is illegal.
6. Avoid all caps lock subject lines
ON THE INTERNET, USING ALL CAPITAL LETTERS IS CONSIDERED SHOUTING. It’s annoying and rarely necessary. Nobody likes being shouted at while looking at their inbox. It looks so amateur too – a great copywriter should be able to grab attention with words, not capital letters. Don’t do it.
7. Don’t use spam trigger words
As you can imagine, there are a bunch of words that are likely to set off spam triggers. You know the kind of language that generic spam emails use and you want to run as far away from them as possible. Hubspot has a handy list of spammy vocabulary here for you to peruse.
8. Say bye to attachments
Spam filters are incredibly sensitive to email attachments. Viruses often come packaged as attachments in spammy emails. Attachments increase email sizes, meaning longer load times. If you want to provide additional information, use a link instead.
9. Lose rich media
It’s not always good to be rich. Don’t put rich media, such as video, audio and Flash, into your emails. This increases the likelihood of emails not displaying properly for different email service providers. It will make your message considerably less effective and make your email look terrible. Just leave rich media alone.
10. Offer plain text and HTML emails
Be inclusive with plain text and HTML email versions. Make sure the HTML email is coded properly as broken tags will alert spam filters. Most email tools will let you quickly easily create a plain text version. Do it as some email services providers, like Gmail and Outlook, may consider your email dodgy.
11. Send re-engagement emails
Your email communications should undoubtedly be targeted. It’s important to send separate communications to those who have not interacted with you for some time. Send a personalised message to let them know they have been missed and possibly give them an incentive to re-engage with you. This will help improve open rates.
12. Make unsubscribing easy
Sometimes, it’s best to break up. It’s better to lose a subscriber than have someone who will never open your emails on your list and dampen your open rates. Make it easy for users to unsubscribe and ask them why they no longer wish to receive your emails.
13. Test emails (across devices and browsers)
This one is important so it’s last to leave an impression. No matter how quickly you must send an email out, test it! Test it across different devices and browsers. At least two different people receive a test email and provide feedback. It will save you from so many blunders and much embarrassment.
So there you have it. Apply these tips to your email campaigns and if you were frequently landing in spam folders, you should see your open rates rise…if you follow good subject line etiquette but that is a blog for another day.