Quick Tips for Keeping Your Emails out of the Spam Folder

How to protect your brand’s reputation by ensuring your emails aren’t marked as spam.

Over the years, thousands of spammers have made it that much harder for brands to reach their target audiences. You can have the very best email strategy out there but if you’re marked as spam or your IP is blacklisted, your efforts are futile.

With hundreds of other brands trying to reach the same target audience as you, email marketing can be quite a challenge, which is why it’s so important for businesses to stick to a few basics if they want to give their campaigns the very best chance at success. Spending a little time on good email hygiene beforehand will help alleviate potential issues.

Basic tactics for keeping your emails out of the spam folder

Below are just some of the best practices your brand should implement if you want to build a good reputation online.

Get to know the CAN-SPAM Act

By staying up to date and complying with the CAN-SPAM act you’ll not only avoid a nasty fine but it will increase your email deliverability rate. If anything in your emails indicates that you’re trying to mislead your recipients, you could face a hefty fine of up to $16,000. Find out more about the act here.

Don’t buy email lists

Yes, buying an email list would certainly help you grow your own list overnight but at what cost? Buying a list will almost certainly damage your reputation and you’ll be back to square one before you know it. It’s definitely not worth your time or money, and certainly not fair to the people on the list either.

Reconsider your ‘From’ name

In order to prevent confusion among your email subscribers, use a ‘From’ name they would recognize and trust. A trustworthy ‘From’ name also sends good signals to email service providers and decreases your chance of landing in a spam folder.

Clean up your code

Sloppy HTML will trigger a red flag and your email could be marked as spam. Go through your code before you send your email out to make sure that there aren’t any unnecessary or unrecognizable tags present.

Stay away from trigger words

Nobody has a full list of spam trigger words so it’s hard to say which words you should stay away from. The main objective of spam filters is to remove any emails that look like sales pitches so use those types of emails as a point of reference. If the wording is too gimmicky, don’t use it.

Partner with a reliable email service provider

Email service providers with low scores don’t have a very good chance of getting the green light. Do a bit of research to find out whether any other businesses have experienced issues with the service provider you have in mind.

Watch that copy

Spam filters will scan your copy to gauge whether you’re trustworthy or not. Don’t write in caps or use too many exclamation marks. You should again stay away from any gimmicky, sales related copy. If you’re going to include URLs, don’t overdo it or use shortened URLS. The URLs should also be from trustworthy websites if you want to land in an inbox.

Size matters

If you’re going to be using images in your emails, keep them to a minimum or at least make sure that they aren’t too big if you want them to pass through spam filters. There are also a number of email clients that block images altogether so keep in mind that your recipients might not see the images at all. Don’t completely rely on images to get your message across.

Get permission

A double-opt in process is a have-to-have. If your recipients are confirming that they want to hear from your business, there’s a much better chance that you’ll make it to their inbox. You should still pay attention to all other elements but using an opt-in email list makes a huge difference to your success rate.

Ask to be whitelisted

Asking your recipients to whitelist your IP by adding your ‘From’ address to their address books will ensure that all future campaigns go straight to their inboxes.

Give your list a good scrub

Before you send any new campaign, be sure to scrub your email list so that all invalid email addresses and spam traps are removed. High bounce rates and low engagement rates will send bad signals to email service providers and this could lead to your IP being blacklisted so it’s important to make email hygiene is a regular part of your campaign setup process.