Email marketing campaigns are one of the best ways to convert sales. By building a qualified email list, you can engage prospects with exciting promotions, offers, and interesting content. A consistent email campaign can be a valuable tool in laying the foundation for further relationship-building with your customers.
It can be a means of staying connected with prospects who may not be ready to buy yet but will be later when your company’s product or services come to them at the right time. However, no matter how great your email subject lines are or how big of a discount you are offering, it doesn’t matter if your emails are not getting read.
In this article, we will discuss how to prevent your marketing emails from getting sent to spam by discussing the top nine email marketing mistakes that prevent email deliverability and hurt sender reputation. By avoiding these mistakes, you can prevent being blacklisted and enhance your marketing efforts to convert sales.
1 – Your email list isn’t clean
Marketers get email lists from a variety of different sources, some better than others. Finding a reliable source for email leads that can provide qualified recipients is vital for your email campaign. You can do this through list-building services or you can build your own email list by creating a landing page on your website, or by creating an opt-in newsletter.
If you buy marketing email lists online from less reputable sources, you may have a list that has a few fake emails or “spam traps.” Spam traps are created by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and blacklist providers to catch unscrupulous email marketers. Even a few emails sent to spam traps can send you to the blacklisted.
2 – You’re not giving enough thought to the content, design, and compatibility of your emails
Spammy subject lines – generally any sales-y wording and certain items that are frequently being hawked on the internet – can get your email domain on the blacklist. Using link shorteners like ‘Bitly’ can also be very harmful for your sender reputation because they are frequently used by cybercriminals to hide a malicious link.
If you admittedly struggle with coming up with quality content or copy for your emails, it could be a good idea to hire a copywriter who can. If so, you would not be alone as a whopping 70% of companies have reported investing more in content and copywriting for their digital marketing campaigns this year.
Also don’t forget that emails should always be compatible with mobile devices since this is how most people access their emails these days. A consistent template for your emails will establish credibility, and valuable content and brilliant marketing messages will increase engagement with your recipients.
3 – People receiving your emails are marking them as spam
Since the enactment of the CAN-SPAM act, all email marketers have to include an option to unsubscribe in their emails. If your email list contains a lot of recipients who may not be interested in your product or service, it’s important to make sure that the unsubscribe option is large and clear enough to see.
When a recipient marks your message as spam, this can greatly hurt your ability to send emails to those recipients that are interested in what you have to offer.
4 – Your email marketing campaign doesn’t run on a consistent schedule
Your email is more likely to be marked as spam if you send your email blasts on an erratic schedule. An email marketing campaign that is inconsistent or not regularly scheduled can hurt your sender reputation, which is the basis on which email servers determine who is spam and who is not.
Running your email campaigns on a steady schedule is also beneficial because it increases the number of click-throughs and opens your email gets. When your email list knows when to expect an email from you, they are more likely to open them. Understanding your audience and using data to understand the best timing for your email blasts is essential to having a data-driven email marketing campaign.
5 – Your payment method isn’t integrated with your email marketing software
It’s important that your company have an email marketing service that is compatible with your various methods of payment. When you accept credit card payments online, there is almost always an option for the purchaser to get a copy of their receipt sent to their email address.
There is no better way to create a qualified email marketing list than by starting with your already existing customers. When choosing an online payment method, it should come with a variety of important features including the ability to be integrated with your email marketing service of choice and to allow customers to pay by responding directly to sent invoices, so there’s little hassle.
6 – Forgetting to authenticate your email marketing service of choice
If you have an email marketing service that you use, then that means technically you are having another company sending out email messages on behalf of your domain. Unfortunately, this can mean your emails can be marked as spam if you neglect to authenticate your email marketing service as an authorized entity to send emails from your domain.
There are two primary ways of getting authenticated: via SPF and DKIM. SPF verifies the sender’s IP addresses to prevent hackers and cybercriminals who send marketing emails pretending to be a reputable company. An SPF record is required to prove that a web host is authorized to send messages from your domain, so make sure your email marketing provider’s IP address is included in your SPF record.
DKIM is like an email signature that proves that your email came from your organization. Both SPF and DKIM records can be adjusted via the Domain Names Setting (DNS) of your domain name provider.
7 – Not having a feedback loop monitoring service
Currently, there are numerous email marketing providers offering feedback loop monitoring services. This means that when a recipient marks your email as spam, you will be notified immediately. In this case, you’d want to take this person off your email list to avoid more emails that have been manually identified as spam from being sent, which can hurt your sender reputation.
8 – Encrypt your emails
Encrypting emails ensures that the contents of a message can’t be read by anyone other than the sender and receiver as it makes its way through cyberspace. You can achieve this with a standard TLS certificate (even many free email providers offer this option) or by using third party encryption.
You should also make it company policy to always use a virtual private network (VPN) service when creating and sending emails to clients. A VPN encrypts your network and masks your IP address so hackers will not be able to trace your online activity. While you may think that a VPN is too costly of an investment, the truth is that there are many quality VPN services that come with secure AES-256 encryption for only $2 to $3 a month, so if anything there’s no reason not to invest in one.
Third-party encryption not only helps email deliverability but keeps your information safe from unwanted outside eyes. After all, keeping your company safe from hackers and cybercriminals is an essential part of protecting your brand’s image.
9 – Your email is all image and no text
Although this rule is changing somewhat, many spam detectors will put a red flag on your email domain if your emails are heavy on images, with little text. As a general rule, it is recommended that your emails be at least 60% text-based.
Keep in mind that depending on the user’s connection or email security settings, images may be blocked, so the written part of your email is the most important.
Email marketing campaigns still remain one of the most productive ways to convert sales. However, it’s important to avoid these common mistakes to ensure the integrity of your sender reputation. With dedication, you can build a quality email list and enjoy the multiple benefits of a strong email marketing campaign that will help your company reach new heights.