You did it all right. Took your addresses, made up your e-mail, sent it out, got your responses, double opt-in, the whole works. From the looks of things, you got a 98% delivery rate. All is good, right? Not according to this article in WebProNews.
It seems that less than 80% of e-mails sent are not delivered at all, with 17.4% not delivered with no return-path notices. What do you think of your open rate now?
This is common and what services are the biggest culprits? It used to be AOL and they’re still on the list, but not at No. 1 where they sat for the longest time. Now it’s Gmail. Thanks Google.
Gmail accounts for 23% of all nondelivered e-mail, Hotmail for 20% and MSN for 20%. The two biggest search engines account for 63% of nondelivered e-mail. So what does that do for e-mail marketing?
Comcast and AOL fall in at Nos. 4 and 5, respectively.
So is there a way to ensure that your e-mail IS delivered and delivered on time to the address that you sent it? Are there some best practices to follow for e-mail marketing so that your e-mails are received by those who’ve opted in to receive them? Yes, actually, there are some things you can do to ensure that your e-mails reach their destination, but remember that there is no fail-safe way and that there will always be some percentage of bounces. Here are a few tips to make your e-mail marketing go more smoothly.
- Be sure you follow all CAN-SPAM laws
- Ensure you mail your marketing messages to a list of subscribers who recognize your company name
- Segment your lists so that subscribers receive only the messages they are interested in receiving
- Use an e-mail service that is reputable and keeps a close eye on deliverability rates
- Get a custom domain name
- Avoid the use of the word “Free” in the subject line (it triggers spam filters)
- Send your newsletter at the same time and on the same day every week/month
- Encourage your subscribers to whitelist your e-mail address
- Use a spam checker on your e-mail before sending it out
- When you get a bounce on an e-mail address, delete it from your list
- Don’t send your e-mail in straight HTML, use multi-part MIME instead
- Go light on graphics within your e-mail
- Monitor the blacklists and make sure your name is taken off any list you appear on
- Use DomainKeys
- Respond to any spam test alerts you receive
- Offer text e-mail messages as an alternative to HTML (multi-part MIME)
- If you are accused of spam deal with it quickly and take the necessary steps to prove you are not a spammer (of course, if you are a spammer then this won’t help you)
That’s it. If you do these things then you will increase the likelihood that your e-mail messages get through to their intended destination.