Improving the Deliverability of Your Campaign

4 min read
You've spent valuable time crafting the content for your next email marketing campaign. With all that effort, you want to make sure the campaign actually gets delivered to your recipients' inboxes. There are many factors that affect email deliverability, and following best practices give your campaign a better chance of reaching your contacts.

What is Email Deliverability?

Email deliverability refers to the process of successfully allowing an email to reach the inbox of the intended recipient. It determines whether your email lands in someone's inbox, spam folder, or if it bounces back and never gets to the recipient. Email deliverability is one of the most important factors of email marketing success. After all, if your campaigns never actually reach your contacts, you have no way of measuring their success. 

There are a few reasons an email might not reach the intended inbox:
  • Hard bounce: The email address is invalid or does not exist.
  • Soft bounce: There was a technical issue when sending to the address.
  • Spam folder: Email filtered as spam.
  • Blocked: Blocked by an ISP or internet protocol.

To make sure your emails don't get blocked or marked as spam, you need to better understand the three main factors that influence your email deliverability.

Factors that Influence Email Deliverability

When you send an email, there are protocols in place behind the scenes to ensure that your IP address, content, and more is trustworthy. The three main factors are:
  • Sender Reputation: A score that signals to an internet service provider (ISP) how trustworthy you are. Sender reputation is something you build over time, like online clout, and it's boosted by positive subscriber actions such as "opens" and "clicks" and having a well-maintained email list. Learn more about improving your email sender reputation.
  • Your Identification: There are different online protocols that determine if you are who you say you are. These include things like a Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM). These run behind the scenes and work like a background check to make sure you are legitimate online. If you purchase a business email through Wix or have connected your mailbox domain to the Wix name servers, then those records are connected too.
To assist with your campaign's deliverability and identification, Wix Email Marketing automatically adds 5 DNS records (3 keys and 2 keys) once a campaign is sent. These keys work in the background to validate your campaign and are expected behavior when assigning a custom mailbox as a sender address.
  • Your email content: This is where following email marketing best practices gets you a better chance of email deliverability. Everything from your subject line, images, and content of the campaign need to be relevant, proofread, and formatted correctly.

Tips to Improve Your Email Deliverability

Here are some best practices to follow to make sure your campaigns are getting to your subscribers' inboxes.

Only email subscribers (people signed up to your mailing list)

You should only be sending campaigns to those who have already consented to receive correspondence from you. Sending a multitude of emails to people who have never heard of your business or haven't asked for information is the quickest way to gather spam complaints and lower your sender reputation. 

Build your email list organically

If you send your campaign to email addresses you've bought or scraped off the internet, it's going to do you more harm than good. The best way to ensure long term email marketing success is by gradually building a list of people who are engaged with your content, and who want to be there. Organically grow your mailing list by adding subscriber forms to your site and landing pages, as well as by offering valuable content in exchange for signing up for your newsletter or latest offers. To align with best practices, make sure you also add a double-opt in for visitors to confirm their consent to be emailed by you.

Regularly maintain your email list

Check your email list frequently for inactive subscribers, spam emails, as well as email addresses that no longer exist. If you send campaigns to non-existent email addresses, you'll get a hard bounce which negatively affects your sender reputation score. Make sure you're also providing a way for people to unsubscribe from your mailing list.

Write an informative and engaging subject line

Your subject line should be straightforward and instantly let someone know what the content of the email contains. If your subject line reads like spam or clickbait (something like: CLICK NOW or regret it later!) you are likely to get complaints or filtered as spam.

Clearly identify yourself and your business

Just like your subject line, when a subscriber opens your email they need to immediately understand who is emailing them and what the email is about. Make sure your business name and address are clearly identified somewhere in the content or footer of the email. This builds trust and can increase your chance of getting replies.

Keep your audience engaged

Do your best to send relevant and stimulating content that gets subscribers interacting with your campaign. Include links to sign up or view more content, ask for feedback, and keep the conversation going. When your subscribers are engaged with your emails, it shows ISPs that your content is valuable.

Gradually increase the number of emails you send

Growing a relationship with your subscribers is much like real life: when you've just gotten permission to email someone, you shouldn't go banging down their door with multiple emails a day. ISPs identify a pattern over time in the amount of emails you send. If you suddenly spike and send a flood of emails at once, your campaign could get blacklisted. To avoid this, warm up your email list by sending emails gradually, and increasing once you see engagement and an eager response to your campaign.

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