5 Tip Guide to Email Deliverability

Are you struggling to reach your customers through email marketing? There is a lot more that goes into email deliverability than you may think. Between complying with CAN-SPAM and CASL regulations and still being able to grab the attention of your recipients, email marketing may not be an easy task. Here are five tips to increase your email deliverability as a business.

    1. Comply with CAN-SPAM and CASL. In order to have continued success through email marketing, your business must comply with CAN-SPAM and CASL. CAN-SPAM is an American act that was passed in 2003, signifying “Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing.” CASL is Canada’s anti-spam legislation that was passed in 2014. Both hold similar sets of rules and guidelines. CAN-SPAM deals with commercial emails, while CASL applies to almost all online messaging. In order to make sure you are complying with these rules, here are some of the main requirements for both:
      • Do not use false or misleading headers and properly identify yourself.
        • Your recipients need to know who you are. When properly identifying yourself, people opening the emails will know who you are, have an idea of what you may want, and are more likely to open it and not just click delete.
      • Avoid deceptive subject lines and messaging that is false or misleading.
        • Subject lines are very important for email marketing. It is one of the first things readers will see. Be honest and do not try to trick your customers. They should be able to know what the message is about just from reading the subject line.
      • Your recipients must see where you are located.
        • Your recipients must know where you are coming from. You should have a valid address tagged with each email.
      • Recipients can easily opt out or unsubscribe.
        • As much as we would enjoy not losing any subscribers, it happens. On all emails, there must be a clear, visible, and easy way for someone to opt out of any further messages.
      • Know what others are doing for you.
        • Many businesses hire other companies to handle their email marketing or marketing plans as a whole. Be aware that even in a contract, you are still responsible for complying to these rules and you need to make sure whoever you hire is doing just that.
    2. Avoid buying lists. When you buy a list for email marketing purposes, that does not mean these contacts have given permission for you to email them. Also, statistics show that most of the time paid lists do not produce effective results.  A lot of your emails may bounce back and that can increase your odds to be blacklisted. Also, many lists are filled with spam and faulty email addresses. Grow your list organically, that way you know contacts are real and you know you have permission from your potential recipients.
    3. Avoid trigger words. It is important to be careful when using certain subject lines and formatting the body of your message. A lot of times, businesses think certain words like “free” or “affordable” or “we are looking for you” are enticing for recipients, when in fact they are less likely to open the email and you are more likely to go directly into the spam folder. Stay away from all caps, an excessive amount of exclamation points, the dollar sign, and trigger words. All of these decrease your chances for engagement and increase the chances of becoming blacklisted or thrown into the spam folder. A lot of words that signify something to do with a price are usually quick trigger words. Also, using one of these words repeatedly throughout the email or typing in all caps can be registered as spam. Here are some popular trigger words and phrases to avoid:
      • $$$$
      • NO (followed by certain words)
      • FREE
      • Instant
      • Now
      • Time’s running out
      • We need you
      • Affordable
    4. Don’t over-send emails. You have the subscribers you want; don’t lose them. When growing your email list, if people are expecting a monthly newsletter or update of your products and services then give them just that – monthly, or whatever else they sign up for. If you start sending weekly promotions unexpectedly, sooner or later you will lose subscribers. Your content is strong and you’ve mastered how to stay out of spam, don’t ruin it by losing subscribers because you are flooding their inboxes.
    5. Have permission. Like mentioned before, an important tip for email marketing is to make sure your recipients gave permission. If they did not give permission there is a good chance your message will go directly in the trash or worse they will report the message as spam because they do not know what it is. If someone does not wish to receive emails, then honor that decision and do not add them to your email list.

So why does email deliverability matter? Punishments for not being compliant vary but can reach high numbers for any business. If CAN-SPAM is violated, EACH email can be flagged with up to a $16,000 fine. For CASL, it varies from warnings to punishment reaching $10 million for businesses. Further, repercussions such as getting blacklisted or losing your rights to the use of certain marketing platforms will prevent you from sending the emails you want to the people you want. Avoid earning a bad reputation and follow these simple tips during your next email campaign.

*Click the following links for more information and sources from this article: CAN-SPAM | CASL