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Why Your Emails May Not Be Reaching Inboxes

by Jenny Henderson | Jul 23, 2018

Email marketing should work like this:

  1. Gather some email addresses;
  2. Send emails to those addresses;
  3. See a big boost in conversions!

But it’s not that simple – a misstep at any stage of email marketing campaigns can result in a disastrous delivery rate. Take a look at these common reasons emails fail to reach subscribers.

You Seem Like a Spammer

Internet service providers are always on the lookout for spammers. Sometimes, marketers with the best intentions inadvertently run afoul of ISP spam filters, when they:

  • Use spammy words – Envision a stereotypical used car dealer from the 1970s. Now imagine the words and phrases that dealer would use to hawk cars. Don’t use any of those words in your emails. Maybe the service you’re offering truly is “100% Guaranteed,” and you want subscribers to see an “Amazing Offer,” but avoid superlatives, if you want your emails to arrive in inboxes.

ISPs may also think you’re a spammer if:

  • You’re the victim of a malware attack – Malicious software can do a lot of damage before businesses detect it. Some malware is designed to hijack domain name systems, so the malware can spread more harm by sending emails from a legitimate DNS. If that happens to you, ISPs will blacklist you as a spammer. Avoid this nightmare scenario by ensuring your hosting is secure, and access to your systems and routers is password-protected. Don’t give partner agencies or clients access to your internal systems until you’re sure they follow similar security protocols.

Spam filters are sometimes overzealous and flag legitimate emails as spam. When your subscribers initially opt-in, send them detailed instructions on how to add your email address to their contact list or safe sender list.

Too Many Typos

If Billy@example.com joined your mailing list, but someone in your office manually entered the address as Bill@example.com, then one of these two scenarios may be true:

  • Bill is receiving emails he never signed up for (and he might be flagging them as spam)

  • No one is using the Bill@example.com address, so you’re sending mail into the ether

Now, if you’ve got a good opt-in process (and you should) that makes people activate their sign-up through an email link, you can weed-out incorrect and non-existent emails. And if you automate the import of email addresses (instead of someone manually entering them), you reduce the opportunity for error.

Email list verification services can identify any “bad” emails and scrub them from your list.

Spelling and Grammar Mistakes

Spelling and grammar matter, because guess who doesn’t care about either of those things? Hackers and spammers. Egregious errors in your email copy can trigger spam filters. Do not hit the “send” button until you’ve had two or three sets of eyes scan the content.

You’re Not Letting Subscribers Control the Relationship

Between the options of “subscribe” and “unsubscribe” lie numerous opportunities for customization. Why force subscribers to choose between two extremes? Maybe they like your content, but they want fewer emails. Or maybe they’re going on vacation and don’t want to return to a cluttered inbox. If you give them only two choices, they may decide to unsubscribe, or send your messages to the trash.

Allowing subscribers to change preferences can help increase deliverability and engagement.

Learning from Mistakes

Email marketing does involve some degree of trial-and-error. Sometimes, you won’t discover those errors until you see some horrifying plunge in deliverability rates.

BoxCrush excels at solutions because we have learned from our own errors. There’s no reason you should have to go through that same process. Let us put our knowledge to work for you.