We’ve got a new team member called Josh Pinto at NewZapp HQ. Some of you will have already spoken to Josh about email deliverability as he’s part of our customer service team.
Josh helps our NewZapp users with any day to day queries about building email campaigns and how to get the most out of the system. He’s also a soothing voice on the end of the line when things are going belly up!
As the new guy we asked him to write a blog about what he gets asked the most. And that’s getting emails delivered.
What is Email Deliverability?
Email deliverability is the amount of emails you sent that were successfully delivered to your recipients.
It does not take into account whether the email went into the spam folder of your recipient. As long as your email reaches the recipient, it is counted as a delivery.
Issues with deliverability
People often don’t realise that not every sent e-mail reaches their recipients. There are many factors that can impact delivery rates, here are a few:
Incorrect email address.
Your recipient’s e-mail address is not correct. They could have made a typing error when subscribing to your newsletter.
The recipient’s mailbox is full.
It’s not unusual that some people don’t delete old messages in their mailbox. Some mailboxes have a limited storage space so when the mailbox is full, all the new messages are rejected.
The e-mail address no longer exists.
It happens when the recipient leaves the company or old unused mailboxes get deleted.
Network related problems
Sometimes they can occur when an Inbox Service Provider (ISP) runs server maintenance or something goes wrong with the network.
When e-mails don’t reach their recipients, they are consequently returned to the sender and a bounce is generated. There are two different types of bounces:
- Hard Bounces occur when the error is permanent (i.e. when the e-mail address no longer exists).
- Soft Bounces are related to temporary errors (i.e. when a recipient isn’t reachable due to a network failure, the system may try to deliver the message again).
You can view bounces and information about each one, in the Track tab of your NewZapp account.
An ISP will do one of three things for emails not bounced:
- Place in the inbox
- Place in the junk folder
- Delete the email
ISP’s like Gmail, are also beginning to intelligently grade emails in the inbox.
Unlike bounce issues, whereby the ISP notifies you that you’ve not reached the inbox, there is no notification to senders by ISP’s if your emails are delivered into a junk folder or deleted.
Another big problem in delivering your e-mail marketing campaigns is represented by spam filters.
Even when you’re not spamming, sometimes your e-mail can be considered as spam all the same. So, the email gets deleted or moved into the spam folder of the recipient’s e-mail reader.
A few reasons why you could be considered as spam:
- Poor list hygiene.
- High spam complaints.
- Very low engagement. Low open rates and a high number of deletes without reading.
- No user reply emails in response to a spam email.
- Incomplete setup of technical criteria including DNS, reverse DNS, SPF and DKIM.
- How the sender handles bounces – if you email repeatedly to addresses that have previously bounced for you, that’s an example of poor email practices.
To not be treated as spam means to not look like spam with the above characteristics. You can find more ways of avoiding the spam trap with our guide.
Ways you can improve your Email Deliverability
Manage the inactive users on your email list.
Inactive users are subscribers who haven’t opened or clicked on your emails in a certain period of time. Users who have not opened an email in 6 months or more can hurt your email deliverability. With a lot of inactive users in your list, it is hard to show a high level of engagement.
Have a good process for handling bounces.
When you send an email to a non-existent email address, it is classified as a bounce. When you keep sending emails to the same addresses that bounced, you will get a bad reputation. Make sure that you quickly remove bounced email addresses from your email list. NewZapp manages this for you by removing hard bounces automatically and managing soft bounces with a ‘threshold’ setting.
Promptly remove names of individuals who unsubscribe.
To comply with regulations, the names of people who unsubscribe should be removed within 10 days. NewZapp allows you to automate this process so people are removed immediately upon unsubscribing.
Aggressively manage your email-marketing program.
This includes consistently creating engaging content that is customised to the greatest extent possible for individuals on your email list.
Send emails only to people who have given you permission.
And preferably confirm their permission with a double opt-in, which you can also do through NewZapp.