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How to Avoid Your Emails Going into Spam

Kristian Rivera January 24, 2017
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When it comes to growing your business, one of the most important tools you have in your arsenal is email marketing. Although it’s a simple concept, many businesses aren’t making the most of the technique because their emails are being flagged as spam. Fortunately, by following a few simple tips, you can improve your success rate and get more out of your email campaigns.

What is Spam?

Screen detail showing large amount of Spam mail

There’s a variety of definitions and interpretations of the word but at the fundamental elements, spam is defined as unsolicited, irrelevant email, which is sent in bulk to a list of people. A good example of this is purchasing a list of emails from a local business. While it seems like an innocent action, especially since there probably are a few good prospects, you still shouldn’t email those individuals/businesses. The main reason is because they never gave you explicit permission to email them, which is why your email would be considered spam.

The CAN-SPAM act

This law came into effect during 2014 and with it comes a variety of hefty fines. In fact, according to the FTC violators of the law can be fined $11,000 for each offense (e.g. each email address which receives spam). Although it sounds intimidating, it’s not too hard to comply with the laws. You just need to follow a few simple rules, a few of which are highlighted below:

  • When sending out mailings you cannot use deceptive from names, reply-to addresses, or subject lines.

  • Email senders must always provide an unsubscribe link. The link must work for at least 30 days after the email is sent.

  • Each email must include a physical mailing address for correspondence.

Reasons your email may be going into spam

Below are a few of the most common reasons your emails might be going into spam:

  • You’re on an email blacklist: Many email providers on the web often rely on email blacklists as a way to ensure spam doesn’t reach their users. In most cases, email senders are added to blacklists after a certain number of their emails are flagged as spam. If you’re curious to see if your emails are being blacklisted, you can always use a blacklist check tool to find the answer.

  • Your email isn’t recognizable: If you’re using a generic email provider such as Gmail, Yahoo, or Microsoft Live, your customers might flag your emails as spam because they won’t know they’re coming from your business. In order to avoid this common mistake, you should ensure you have a professional email address.

  • Your emails might not sound natural. As a rule of thumb you need your writing to sound like you were talking to someone else. Common signs of spam emails include: colored fonts, excessive exclamation points, too many images, and having sentences in all caps.

How to keep your emails out of the spam folder

Although it might seem daunting, keeping your emails out of the spam folder isn’t nearly as hard as it sounds. You just need to follow a few simple tips such as the ones below:

  • Choose your opt-in method wisely: When possible, you should use the double opt-in method. This is a valuable tool because it enables you to know that each recipient has given you permission to send them emails. The method is fairly straightforward – once someone provides their email to you, they’ll quickly receive an email containing a link to confirm they actually own the email they’ve submitted.

  • Set expectations when people join your list: If people signup to receive a monthly newsletter and you suddenly start sending weekly blasts, then you’re likely to lose subscribers fairly quickly. When you’re collecting emails, you need to be clear about what you’re sending and how often content will be sent.

  • Drip your email lists: Spam filters typically look at how many email messages a person is sending at a time. If you’re sending emails to a large list, it’s usually best to send those emails slowly. Ideally you want to keep the volume to under a thousand emails per hour.

Keep Emails Out of Spam

Leveraging Your Website

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As mentioned earlier, when it comes to developing an email list, you shouldn’t purchase lists from someone else. Rather the best course of action is to build your email list through your company website. Additionally, you can use an online property to boost your credibility and promote your brand. Not sure where to get started? Here’s a brief primer so you can start building your website and hit the ground running.

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