Email Deliverability Tips
Ensuring requested opt-in email is delivered to subscriber inboxes is an increasingly
difficult battle in the age of spam filtering. Open and click thru response rates can be
dramatically affected by as much as 20-30% due to incorrect spam filter classification.
Confirming that the people who ask for your information have actually requested to be on
your list is the number one step in the battle for deliverability. You should be using a
process called confirmed opt-in or verified opt-in to send a unique link to the attempted
subscriber when they request information. Before adding the person to your list they must
click that unique link verifying that they are indeed the same person that owns the email
address and requested to subscribe.
When requesting website visitors to opt-in ask for their “real” or “primary” email address
instead of a free email address like Yahoo or Hotmail. Free emails tend to be throw away
accounts and typically have a shorter lifetime than a primary ISP address.
Always promptly remove undeliverable addresses that bounce when sending email to
them. An address that bounces with a permanent error 2-3 times in a 30 day period
should be removed from the list. ISP’s track what percentage of your newsletters bounce
and will block them if you attempt to continually deliver messages to closed subscriber
Usage of HTML messages to allow for text formatting, multiple columns, images, and
brand recognition is growing in popularity and is widely supported by most email client
software. Most spam is also HTML formatted and thus differentiating between requested
email and spam HTML messages can be difficult. A 2004 study by AWeber .com shows
that plain text messages are undeliverable 1.15% of the time and HTML only messages
were undeliverable 2.3%. If sending HTML it is important to always send a plain text
alternative message, also called text/HTM