7 Ways to Improve E-Mail Deliverability
A recent whitepaper from the e-mail marketing firm StrongMail, called Mastering Your Email Reputation: Seven Strategies for Improving Deliverability, provides tips to multichannel marketers looking to improve the effectiveness of their e-mail campaigns. Among others, the whitepaper lays out best practices to improve sender reputation to protect against e-mails being filtered or blocked by Internet service providers (ISPs), preventing them from reaching consumers’ inboxes. Here’s a look at the whitepaper’s seven strategies.
1. Maintain a clean list. Sending to bad addresses not only skews response rates, it’s a core metric ISPs use to determine sender reputation, the whitepaper notes. To maintain a clean list, consider the following tactics:
* Bounce management: Have a system in place to automatically process and categorize varying bounce codes. To implement this system effectively, capture all data streams, including asynchronous and synchronous bounces; interpret the data by processing bounce data and the varying bounce descriptions that come from each receiving domain; organize the data into logical categories, such as hard bounce, soft bounce, block and technical failure; take action based upon the data, including creating reports that address the causes of failures; and update your rules continually to keep up with the dynamic e-mail environment, which causes ISPs to periodically update bounce codes.
* List hygiene: To keep deliverability rates high, scrub your list regularly by running it against a register of known bad domains and role accounts; remove and/or correct bad domains by reviewing failure reports, identifying bad addresses, and evaluating whether they’re the result of a data capture problem or a nonexistent domain; remove distribution accounts simply by adding “info@*,” “sales@*” and other common addresses to your suppression list; remove inactive addresses (customers without any opens or clicks within a 12-month period); and use data checkers on your Web site to help ensure e-mail addresses are properly formatted before accepted into the database.