email blacklist

How to Avoid Email Blacklists?

How to Avoid Email Blacklists?

Melissa IN Team | Email Verification, India | , , ,

You’ve designed a great email campaign and everything seems to be running smoothly. That is until you see your statistics and notice a very high bounce rate. It is a scary thought because not only is your message not being delivered, you have probably been blacklisted!

There are many reasons why your domain may have been blacklisted and there are ways to get your brand out of it. But, your brand reputation takes a toll that could take much longer to recover from.

A better idea would be to make yourself aware of how email blacklists work and what you can do to avoid being on them.

What Is Email Blacklist?

On average, every person receives about 21 spam emails every day. This refers to unsolicited emails that are usually sent out as bulk messages. Blacklisting is the process of identifying domains and IP addresses used to send these emails. The domain names are compiled on a list and any emails from them are blocked from being delivered to the recipient’s inbox.

This database is based largely on emails that have been automatically identified as spam by spam filters or marked as spam by recipients. Once enough complaints are registered, the domain or IP is blacklisted. Senders may also be blacklisted if their emails have a very high bounce rate or if a large percentage of emails are being deleted without being opened.

Some of the most common reasons for being accidentally blacklisted include sending emails to unverified email addresses, irrelevant content and sending emails to people who have not subscribed to be on your mailing list.

How To Avoid Email Blacklists

Just as customers don’t want to receive spam emails, no email marketer wants to be blacklisted. Here are a few things you can do to avoid being blacklisted.

Use Only Verified Mailing Lists

The first step to minimizing the risk of being blacklisted is to insist on clean mailing lists. The emails on your list must be accurate, valid and free from all typographic errors. When you mail a non-existent email address, your emails will bounce back and a high bounce rate could get you blacklisted.

The simplest way to do this is to use an email verification service. These online tools will check the email addresses on your list against a third-party database and deliver real-time results. So, if a customer enters a fictional email address in your sign-up form, it will be highlighted and kept from entering your database.

Email verification tools also identify typographic and syntax errors that could make an email address invalid. For example, ‘’ or ‘’.

Along with an initial verification, mailing lists must also be regularly checked for decay and duplication. People stop using email addresses for many reasons and an email address that was valid a year ago may be invalid today.

The verification tools can be set to regularly check mailing lists and identify and remove such decayed addresses. Similarly, they can also identify duplicates and remove the same from your mailing list.

As a result, when you send out an email campaign, it is sent only to verified recipients.

Avoid Disposable Email Addresses

A common way of building a mailing list is to ask people to subscribe in exchange for a free e-book or discount. In such cases, many people use disposable email addresses. These are temporary accounts that accept emails for a limited time.

At the time of signing up, the email address could appear valid but by the time you send your next marketing email, it may no longer exist. Hence, it is best to keep email addresses from known disposable email domains out of your database.

Make Your Emails Relevant

If customers find your emails irrelevant to them, they may mark them as spam. Hence, pay attention to the content and how it matches your customer’s expectations. Make use of the customer data available to segment your audience according to varying demographics.

While the core message may stay the same, tweaking the content can make it relevant to different groups. For example, a children’s clothing retailer announcing a new collection may use different types of outfits to appeal to customers with children of different age groups.

Also, make sure each email looks different. If you use the same template and only change a few words here and there, customers may assume it to be the same message and consider it spam.

Do Not Spam!

While it is obvious, it must be said. Spam filters check every email and if you send out mass emails with commonly used spam words, you’re likely to be blacklisted.

To begin with, always make sure your mailing list includes only opt-in subscribers. Never buy a mailing list no matter what it promises. It is better to have a short mailing list with 100 subscribers who want to hear from you rather than email 10,000 people who will tag your email as spam.

There are also certain spam trigger words to be avoided. For example, words and phrases that make exaggerated claims like ‘100% free’ or ‘earn money’ may be flagged by spam filters. Make sure your content is free of such phrases. Keywords are important but they must be used appropriately without seeming forced.

Most importantly, every email must include a link to ‘unsubscribe’.

In Conclusion

Despite having other channels of communication, 29% of marketers still rate emails as the most effective marketing channel. Of course, to experience how effective email campaigns can be, you need to have a good sender reputation and protect yourself from being blacklisted. While the risk cannot be completely eliminated, it can be minimized by paying attention to your mailing list and ensuring that it meets high-quality standards.

Pick an email verification tool that can be integrated with your systems and can provide quick, reliable results for verification at the time of onboarding and regular database checks. It’s a simple step that can be automated and will serve you well for all your future campaigns.

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