Best Practices Deliverability 101

Setting Expectations

The best way to maintain deliverability is to get started by setting expectations. Many problems with email deliverability arise due to a disconnect between what the recipient is expecting to receive and what the marketer has planned to send. No matter how many best practices you follow, you will see spam folder placement due to this disconnect.

If your ESP allows you to have a preference center, make heavy use of it. If not, you can use a welcome series to set expectations for new subscribers and give them a chance to opt in or opt out of additional mailings you have planned.

The specifics of your programs will vary based on your industry, so keep in mind your customers’ purchase and engagement habits when you’re scheduling out new content. If you subscribers are expecting to see email from you once a week, don’t automatically add them in to your “special offers” which are also sent once weekly. You’re now sending double the expected mail to them.

We see this kind of list creep frequently. Over time, subscribers who started with one email from your company per week now receive up to five emails per week due to the number of new initiatives added over the years. Run a review at least annually to ensure that your content isn’t so targeted as to inundate your subscribers with excessive emails. You’ll also want to make sure to include the profile center link in every email to easily allow subscribers to choose which additional initiatives and how much email they wish to receive from you.

Randomly selecting from the list of subscribers receiving multiple initiatives and performing a count for how many emails those subscribers are seeing can be a wake-up call for how much mail you’re really sending to each subscriber. This is especially important for subscribers who are starting to become less engaged with you, as list fatigue causes otherwise very actively engaged subscribers to stop engaging with your emails.

Keep account of how much mail and what content you’re sending to subscribers to make sure that your expectations are aligned with theirs to help avoid email deliverability problems that can arise, even when you’re following best practices.

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