Email marketing remains the highest ROI channel for ecommerce merchants globally, however, there are two significant challenges that brands must be aware of that are still shrouded in mystery: Blacklists and Spam Traps. In this blog, we’ll delve into these concepts, exploring what they are, who manages them, and how they can impact your email deliverability.
Unravelling blacklists: the guard dogs of email deliverability
Blacklists, also known as block lists, see themselves as guardians of the email ecosystem. They are publicly available lists of email addresses, website domains and IP addresses flagged as sources of spam or unsolicited emails. These lists are managed by various entities, including email service providers such as Gmail and Hotmail, anti-spam organizations as well as email security companies.
Who Manages Blacklists?
Blacklists are maintained by companies and non-goverment organisations (NGOs) committed to protecting users from unwanted emails. The most notable of these are Spamhaus, Barracuda Networks, SpamCop and SURBL. These providers maintain lists that email service providers use to monitor black listings in real time.
Impact on Email Deliverability:
Landing on a blacklist can have severe consequences for your email deliverability. Emails from listed sources are almost always filtered or blocked, resulting in your email going directly to a users spam folder or being rejected all together by the ISP.
The Enigma of Spam Traps: Dangers Lurking in Your Email List
Spam traps come in two types and are used to identify people who are either purchasing lists of bulk email addresses or people who are emailing old, unused email addresses.
Pristine Spam Traps:
Don’t buy marketing listing
Pristine spam traps are email addresses deliberately created to serve as bait for spammers. Since these addresses have never been used by real users, any emails sent to them would mean the the sender has acquired the email by scraping the internet for publicly available addresses and is emailing those addresses without consent. These email addresses are commonly found on lists availble to be purchased online by people marketing lists of ‘qualified leads’.
Recycled Spam Traps:
Clean your list regularly
Recycled spam traps are email address that were once legitimate and active but have not been using by the addresses’ creator for multiple years. Email service providers, like Gmail and Hotmail, and anti-spam organizations repurpose these addresses to identify senders who are emailing people that haven’t opened or engaged for a long time and are therefore not using good list hygiene practices.
How to Avoid Blacklisting:
Landing in spam traps almost guarantees that your emails will go to spam. To ensure a healthy email list, it is essential to follow the steps below:
- Always practice permission-based email marketing, ensuring that you send emails only to recipients who have explicitly opted in to receive communications from you.
- Keep your email list clean by regularly removing inactive or bouncing addresses.
- Avoid purchasing email lists or using email addresses obtained from questionable sources.
- Respect unsubscribe requests promptly to maintain a positive sender reputation.
Remember, email marketing is most impactful when done responsibly and with your recipients’ best interests in mind. The ultimate goal of email marketing is to drive engagement and revenue and having a brand with a strong public reputation is key to achieving those goals.
Having issues with deliverability? Andzen can help you with list cleaning, black list removal and overall deliverability with your email marketing strategy to quickly get you back on track. Enquiry today and we’ll organise a complimentary audit for you.