Being added to a blacklist murders any email marketing campaign, regardless of how awesome your intentions are. Sometimes little things, like overloading your email with graphics, results in immediate blacklisting.
We all know your intentions are good, but the spam filters don’t. They see you as you are and make a snap judgment (remember, it is all automated!). Without implementing these basic and easy tips, you’re running the risk of being blocked. Then, all of your efforts have gone to waste. Now, we don’t want that to happen.
- If there’s any one thing that you take away from this post is that double-opts are not only a best practice, it’s a security blanket for you and your subscriber.
- Include attachments, if and only if you want to be blacklisted.
- Run your email through rigorous testing, including whether you’ve accidentally embedded a virus in it (it happens more often than you think).
- Review your data: if you have an unexpected or disproportionate number of hard bounces to deliveries, then something’s fishy going on with your email.
- Always include an unsubscribe option in each and every email (standard best practice).
- Check your email frequency: scale back the number of emails you send per week, and you’ll fly under the spam filter radar.
- Ensure that you’re “sender” email address isn’t a jumble of words and numbers, but an actual email address, checked by real, live people.
- Run your IP through blacklisting checkers (most are free!) to see if you’re already blacklisted.
- Ask your subscribers to add your email address to their contact list (also known as whitelisting).
- Clean out your email subscriber list often: repeat attempts at bad or nonexistent emails is a spammer’s modus operandi.
- Avoid using these words and phrases in any part of your email (including subject line): free, porn, win, get rick quick, check cashing services, free (!), opportunity – these are flagged spam words.
- Include options for your subscribers to view your email in an HTML or web-based version.
- Swear on your life: you’ll never, ever BCC your list.
- Scale back on your inclusion of images, graphics and flash in your emails – spam filters are now cracking down on this and you’ll end up bounced.
- Don’t ever use UPPERCASE for any words whether its in your subject line or body – those are flags for spamming.
There, now don’t you feel better that your email is clean of all those possible flags and will not end up on a blacklist? You are now free to go on your way and send happily ever after.