Are your emails ending up in your subscribers’ junk folder? This section will address a problem most email marketers and their clients have without getting too technical. If you’ve found any effective methods to reduce your spam score that aren’t covered here, please let us know!*
First of all: DON’T SPAM.
Yes, it really is that simple. Don’t spam: Don’t buy your email database, don’t send unsolicited emails, don’t send emails to people that haven’t been directly signed up or referred, and don’t send too many emails to your database too often.**
Ok, now that we’ve got that covered, on to the rest:
Don’t send an email as a single image.
It’s tempting, we know! Designing your entire email as a single image allows for so much design flexibility. Problem is, that’s exactly the kind of thing spam filters look for. Spam filters assume a single (or email consisting only of images) is a way for email senders to prevent their content from being scanned for spam.
Try to include some “normal” text (text that your recipient can select, copy & paste) in your email design as well. The truth is that there’s a fine line between too little and too much text, as different spam filters flag image-to-text ratios differently. A simple formula that works well is to have a small image next to a “teaser” or “introductory” paragraph, with a “read more” link to the full content/article on your website.
Alternatively, consider having your company profile text, a disclaimer, contact details or other “standard” text that you think recipients will find useful at the bottom of your email as normal text.
Down with UPPERCASE!
Don’t write your email subject (or entire email for that matter) in UPPER CASE. Sentence case or Capital Case will do just fine.
Provide an unsubscribe/opt-out link
Apart from it being common courtesy (and required by law), providing an unsubscribe link at the bottom of your email will allow people to unsubscribe from your database instead of going on a spree of spam blocking and reporting. Needless to say, the unsubscribe link needs to work and be honoured. Luckily, OUTBOXED’s system has this built into the functionality.
Make sure your return-path is correct
Send the email from an email address people can actually reply to. Invalid email addresses will definitely count against you.
“Suspect” content and attachments should be avoided
- Try to avoid spam trigger words. Each “trigger” word is assigned a point, and once your email contains a certain amount of points, your email is marked as spam. Click here to do a simple google search for words that trigger spam filters.
- Don’t use too many images, or excessive amount of text.
- Attachments other than PDF files should be avoided
Sending emails to non-existent email address looks suspicious. People change their email addresses and sometimes don’t inform you accordingly. Make sure emails that aren’t delivered (emails that bounce) are removed from your database. The OUTBOXED system does this for you!
Don’t send too many emails too often
People are more likely to report your email as spam if they receive too many emails too often, even if they did sign up via legitimate channels initially.**
Ask subscribers to “whitelist” you.
Many email clients have a “safe senders” functionality or a “not spam” button. Ask your subscribers to use it.
Further reading: Consumer protection act
* We’ll be updating this page regularly!
** The “acceptable” frequency of your emails will depend on the nature of your emails. Some businesses require daily emails (eg. inspirational), some weekly (eg. specials), some monthly (eg. newsletters).