For email marketers, there’s nothing worse than falling into the big black hole known as the spam folder. After working tirelessly on an email marketing campaign, that’s the last place you want your emails to end up.
So what can you do to make sure all your hard work doesn’t go to waste? Keep reading to discover how to stay out of the spam folder and get into your subscriber’s inbox.
Clean up your list and segments
Email service providers (ESPs) like Gmail, Yahoo, and Outlook are constantly on the lookout for spam. One way they do this is by checking if an email is sent to too many unengaged customers. (This is their way of making sure you didn’t buy email lists, which is obviously a big no-no!)
That’s why it’s important to continually update your email list and remove unengaged subscribers. In addition, you should create user segments to further separate your audience into smaller groups and improve email deliverability. You can segment your list based on customer demographics, purchase history, and customer engagement level. If you’re not quite ready to say goodbye to your unengaged subscribers just yet, try re-engaging them with a sunset flow [link to email automation blog post].
Set up a double opt-in process
To ensure you’re only sending emails to engaged subscribers in the first place, consider using a double opt-in process. This means that once someone subscribes to your list, they’ll receive an automated follow-up message to confirm and consent to all your future emails. By asking your subscribers to take that extra step, you’ll be able to feel confident your lists and segments are full of serious, engaged customers, not invalid or inactive email addresses.
Avoid “spammy” language
One way ESPs determine if an email is spam is by parsing the language of the email, specifically your subject line [link to subject line blog post]. Make sure you’re not overusing CAPS, exclamation points!!!, or spam-triggering phrases like “as seen on,” “buy direct,” “once in a lifetime,” “free consultation,” or “make money.” Here are 394 phrases you should avoid altogether, according to HubSpot.
Use a 60/40 text-to-image ratio
While images can be a vibrant, eye-catching addition to an email, it’s important that emails contain meaningful, relevant language. Why? There are two reasons for this. The first is that images don’t always load on email. The second is that ESPs analyze the language to flag whether an email is spam. When an email is composed solely of images, ESPs will raise a big red flag and automatically send your email straight to the spam folder. Most experts agree: the optimal text-to-image ratio is 60/40.
Send a Plain Text & HTML email simultaneously
Not only are plain-text emails more mobile- and reader-friendly, they’re also the preferred format for spam filters. This is because plain text emails won’t contain blocked images or viruses that can make their way through via HTML emails. When you pair an HTML email with a plain text version, your email will fly straight past your spam filter and into your subscriber’s inbox without a hitch.
Use a familiar sender name
Sending spam emails can get you in a lot of trouble. In fact, violating the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 can result in a fine up to $16,000 per spam email! This act, which was the first national standard for commercial email, bans “misleading header information.” In other words, the address in your “from” field must be accurate. Make sure you’re staying consistent and sending your emails using your business’s name, whether that’s email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. Plus, by sending your emails from the same sender name every time, you’ll start to build trust with your subscribers and they’ll look forward to opening your emails.
We get it, the spam folder is the worst. If you want to make sure you never end up there again, reach out to us today.