Writing, designing, and sending emails takes time—time you could otherwise spend on your business. Why risk the chance that your recipients’ disregard your emails, or worse, mark them as spam?
Did you know that if a significant number of your email recipients mark your email as spam, it impacts your next delivery cycle? It’s called sender reputation. Sparkpost talks more about it, but in a nutshell, it’s used by internet service providers (ISPs) to determine if your future email should go to the inbox or spam folder.
Here are nine tips to help keep your emails from landing in the spam box.
- “From” Field: Use a name (company, brand, or person) recipients will recognize. Also, be sure the email address in this field is associated with your website domain, e.g., Tom@GreatCompany.com. GreatCompany.com is the domain name. Otherwise, delivery challenges will happen and your email may not be sent. Plus, avoid using emails with domains like @gmail.com or @aol.com. Use a real email domain address to facilitate effective delivery.
- “Reply” Field: Ensure replies are going to a monitored email address, e.g., Sales@GreatCompany.com. Rules may be applied within the email service provider software to route emails with specific subject lines to different people in the company. For example, all emails may go to Sales@GreatCompany.com, but the ones with the subject line “Help with Payroll” would go to Ed, while the subject line with “Tax Consultation” would go to Grace.
- Links: Leveraging tracking URLs in your email helps the email services provider (ESP) track link clicks and assists with email and website analytics. A tracking link is a link with information added to it, such as campaign source, medium, and campaign name. In this example, https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/improve-your-email-subject-line?utm_source=website&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Improve-email-subject-line, the email URL is the text before the “?.” The campaign source is the website. The medium is email (where the link is being used). The campaign name is a shortened version of the page name. Tools, such as RavenTools.com and Google’s URL builder, are easy-to-use URL builders.
- CAN-SPAM and GDPR: These regulations were put into practice to help reduce spam. Become familiar with them and how your emails may be impacted by them, from delivery schedules to unsubscribe rules.
- Unsubscribe: In all honesty, this is a good thing. If someone doesn’t want to be on your list, give them a chance to get off. They won’t be clicking on your emails anyway, which decreases your overall open rate and email effectiveness. Offer this option in your email footer or other areas of the email.
- Use Both HTML and Text Versions: If your email provider offers these two ways to display your email, use them. Skipping this step could mean a portion of your audience may not be able to read your email. It also aids spam filters in determining if your email is spam or not.
- Formatting: Keep this simple. Avoid using too many fonts, font treatments—such as bold, italic, colors, etc., and hyperlink styles. Spam filters have a hard time deciphering the tags and may mistake the email for spam.
- Write Like a Human: Adding spaces in text to “trick” a spam filter is not a good idea. For example, rather than using an altered version of a term, such as “s.p.a.m. email,” use the real term; otherwise ESPs may think you’re hiding something and flag the email.
- Whitelisting: If you send welcome emails to new subscribers, include information about how to whitelist your email address. Lifewire has instructions that may be helpful.
Now that you have these nine tips, what’s your plan to avoid the spam filter?