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Cleanliness & Monitoring

  • Email Bounces

    Identifying Bounce Types:

    • Hard Bounces (5.x.x errors): Indicate that the email address no longer exists or never existed.
    • Soft Bounces (4.x.x errors): Occur for reasons like the prospect's email server being down or their mailbox being full.

    Bounce Rate Considerations

    A clean email list typically maintains a bounce rate of about or under 1%. It's crucial to differentiate between hard and soft bounces, as a high bounce rate can impact your email deliverability. If the bounce rate exceeds 5%, it becomes more noticeable to email filters that you're sending to stale addresses. A hard bounce rate of more than 10% may lead to ISPs blocking your emails.

    What You Can Do:

    • Review bounce messages to determine if they are hard or soft bounces.
    • Remove hard bounces from your email campaign immediately.
    • Aim to keep soft bounces under 5% and hard bounces under 1% for every email campaign.

    Using Postmaster Tools for Analysis

    For those sending a large volume of emails, tools like Postmaster Tools can provide insights into email performance. These tools allow you to assess if customers mark your emails as spam, identify delivery issues, ensure secure email transmission, and verify adherence to your email provider's best practices.

    What You Can Do:

    • Utilize Postmaster Tools to analyze email performance and identify potential issues.
    • Understand customer feedback and adapt email strategies accordingly.

    In conclusion, understanding and managing bounce rates is essential for maintaining a healthy email delivery system. By actively monitoring and addressing bounce issues, you can enhance your email deliverability and ensure that your messages reach your intended audience.

    DKIM, providing instructions for unverified messages (e.g., send to spam or reject).

    • Implementation Recommendations

      • DKIM and SPF should be standard in your basic technical setup.
      • DMARC can be an additional option for enhanced security.
      • Contact your IT team to ensure SPF, DKIM, and DMARC are configured for your email authentication.

    In summary, a robust email authentication system, incorporating DKIM, SPF, and DMARC, is essential for securing your emails and maintaining trust with recipients. Regular communication with your IT team ensures these protocols are effectively implemented.

  • Source verification

    Risks of Purchased Lists

    1. Purchased email lists pose inherent risks to deliverability.
    2. Lists often include names and emails of prospects who haven't opted-in, leading to negative interactions.
    3. Spam traps within purchased lists can trigger various consequences, from temporary blocks to domain blacklisting.

    What You Can Do:

    1. Build your own lists or use reputable list hygiene providers.
    2. Verify data before trusting purchased lists to ensure validity and avoid reputation threats.

    New Domain Address Warming

    Introducing a new domain is like starting a car in winter; it requires a gradual warming process.

    • Warming up a new domain establishes identity, gains trust, and positively impacts the sender's reputation and deliverability.
    • ISPs scrutinize new domains with suspicion, making the warming process crucial for success.

    What You Can Do:

    1. Collaborate with your IT team for a successful warming strategy.
    2. Review domain factors with your IT team, including age, sending history, and DKIM usage.
    3. Use a domain older than six months for better spam filter perception.
    4. Avoid using domains with a historically poor reputation.
    5. Utilize subdomains for DKIM signing to maintain a better reputation.
    6. Ramp up your new domain in a two-step process: Slowly increase email volume and actively monitor engagement.

    Ramping Up Email Sends

    1. The warming process spans approximately 30 days, adjusting based on volume, frequency, and prospect list quality.
    2. Start with smaller volumes, target an engaged segment, and gradually increase the volume.
    3. Double send volume every three or four days until reaching the regular email send rate.

    Monitoring Campaigns

    1. Beyond volume, consider the content and engagement of your emails during the warming process.
    2. High engagement improves credibility with ISPs.
    3. Don't be alarmed if initial emails land in spam; it's natural for a new domain.
    4. Some providers test by delivering to spam folders to gauge legitimacy.

    What You Can Do:

    1. Monitor engagement metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and reply rates.
    2. Adjust content and strategies based on engagement to enhance sender credibility.

    In conclusion, maintaining cleanliness in your email practices and closely monitoring the warming process for new domains are vital steps toward ensuring successful email deliverability. By following these best practices, you can build a positive sender reputation and establish trust with both ISPs and your audience.

  • Review Bounces

    Bounced Email Notifications

    When you send an email and it is rejected by your prospect's email server, you receive a bounced email notification. There are two primary types of bounces: hard bounces and soft bounces.

    Identifying Bounce Types:

    • Hard Bounces (5.x.x errors): Indicate that the email address no longer exists or never existed.
    • Soft Bounces (4.x.x errors): Occur for reasons like the prospect's email server being down or their mailbox being full.

    Bounce Rate Considerations

    A clean email list typically maintains a bounce rate of about or under 1%. It's crucial to differentiate between hard and soft bounces, as a high bounce rate can impact your email deliverability. If the bounce rate exceeds 5%, it becomes more noticeable to email filters that you're sending to stale addresses. A hard bounce rate of more than 10% may lead to ISPs blocking your emails.

    What You Can Do:

    • Review bounce messages to determine if they are hard or soft bounces.
    • Remove hard bounces from your email campaign immediately.
    • Aim to keep soft bounces under 5% and hard bounces under 1% for every email campaign.

    Using Postmaster Tools for Analysis

    For those sending a large volume of emails, tools like Postmaster Tools can provide insights into email performance. These tools allow you to assess if customers mark your emails as spam, identify delivery issues, ensure secure email transmission, and verify adherence to your email provider's best practices.

    What You Can Do:

    • Utilize Postmaster Tools to analyze email performance and identify potential issues.
    • Understand customer feedback and adapt email strategies accordingly.

    In conclusion, understanding and managing bounce rates is essential for maintaining a healthy email delivery system. By actively monitoring and addressing bounce issues, you can enhance your email deliverability and ensure that your messages reach your intended audience.

  • Monitoring Blacklists

    Blacklists are compilations of domain names or IP addresses associated with identified "spammers." Email servers refer to these lists to identify and block potential spam. If your domain or IP address is on a blacklist, your emails may be blocked, affecting your ability to reach prospects.

    Analogy: Return Address on an Envelope

    Think of your domain and IP address as the return address on an envelope. Mail servers check this return address against various blacklists. If listed, your email could end up in the recipient's junk folder or be rejected outright.

    Taking Action to Preserve Sender Reputation

    What You Can Do:

    1. Follow Best Practices: Adhere to email best practices to maintain a high sender reputation.
    2. Monitor Blacklists: Regularly check your IP and domain against well-known blacklists using available tools.
    3. Delisting Process: If blacklisted, submit a delisting request to have your IP address and domain removed. This process is typically completed on the blacklist's website. Some blacklists may have a timer for removal based on decreased email traffic or fewer complaints.

    Following the Rules: CAN-SPAM, CASL, GDPR & CCPA

    1. Emphasis on Data Privacy Laws
      Data privacy regulations, such as CAN-SPAM, CASL, GDPR, and CCPA, grant individuals the right to opt out of email communication and request data deletion. Violating these laws can result in significant fines, with GDPR imposing a 4% fine on your ARR for non-compliance.

    2. Compliance Measures
      What You Can Do:
      1. Know the Laws: Understand the data privacy laws in your country and those of foreign countries, especially in the European Union.
      2. CAN-SPAM Compliance: Include your company's address and an unsubscribe link in all emails to comply with CAN-SPAM.
      3. GDPR Compliance: Ensure individuals receiving your emails have opted into your communication, aligning with GDPR requirements.
      4. Regulation Adherence: By complying with these regulations, you reduce the likelihood of complaints against your domain, improving your email placement in recipients' inboxes.