For beginners, email marketing is a tricky thing. On the one hand, people talk about annoying ads that keep coming to their inboxes. On the other hand, business owners complain about their email campaigns just disappearing into the void — they’re never opened, never seen, never interacted with, and nobody knows what went wrong.
So, is email marketing an efficient sales channel or a waste of time and resources? It can be both, depending on your approach to deliverability. However, what is deliverability? How is it measured? What can affect it?
These are the questions you’re quite likely to ask yourself as you start exploring email marketing. The essence of email deliverability isn’t complicated — it’s the probability of your emails landing directly to your recipients’ inboxes. The higher that probability is, the better your email deliverability gets.
However, ensuring high email deliverability is a whole different story, but we’re here to give you a clue and help you separate apples from oranges. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the most important element of your email outreach.
What is good email deliverability?
In general, good email deliverability means that around 95% of your emails land in your recipients’ inboxes. However, that’s not all.
Some senders make the same mistake: They see that around 99% of their emails get delivered to their intended recipients, they relax and call it a day. Meanwhile, their emails haven’t made much progress on their journey.
Good email deliverability doesn’t stop at sending a message to your prospects’ inboxes. That coveted 95% must include the following:
- A low number of soft and hard bounces. Sometimes, soon after you send your emails, you receive some of them back, either due to temporary issues, such as server problems, breaking your sending consistency or full recipient inbox (soft bounces), or a problem with your mailing list, i.e., sending to a non-existing email address (hard bounces). Soft bounces require you to slow down and tread carefully just to stay in your ISP’s good graces, while hard bounces can hurt your reputation as a sender. To maintain good email deliverability, you must make sure that your emails aren’t bounced.
- A number of emails went directly to Inbox. It means, they don’t end up in a Trash folder or get caught by a spam trap (an email address used by email service providers to fish out senders who compile messy sending lists and never validate their addresses). Such things happen all the time, yet senders remain obvious to them, unknowingly sabotaging their deliverability.
- A number of opened emails/email interactions. What’s the point of your email getting delivered if it’s never opened? Your messages pursue a certain goal and when this goal is not achieved, they don’t make any difference for your deliverability. Your task is to make sure that your prospects can see your emails and that they are actually interested in opening them and reading their contents.
So, if you want really good email deliverability, you must do your part, from building a sending list to crafting an email template that would look friendly to email service providers and tempting to your recipients.
Tips for improving email deliverability
In general, email deliverability is influenced by three key factors:
- Your email service provider. Nowadays, there are many services that allow creating an account for sending emails, but the majority prefer to work with the biggest players such as Gmail, Outlook, and Zoho for a good reason. Not only do these platforms provide a great set of tools for customizing email campaigns and managing your outreach, but they also offer a high level of security which is necessary for protecting users from spam, phishing attempts, and spoofed emails. So, if you send via email service that many antispam systems are familiar with, you will encounter fewer issues with your deliverability.
- Your sender behavior. As soon as you create a domain or a mailbox, you’ll find yourself closely studied by spam filters and internet service providers. Everything you do, from the number of messages you send to your activity, is monitored and documented. Sounds scary, but it’s merely a precaution to keep users safe from spammers. It’s up to you to prove that you’re not a threat by sticking to a steady schedule for sending emails and warming up your domain properly.
- Your content. The way you write your body text and subject lines affect both spam filters and user behavior. A clean text without spammy words and phrases is greenlit by the system, while appealing subject lines and compelling offers appeal to your target audience and increase your clicks and opens.
Following these factors, there are several strategies you can implement in order to improve your email deliverability:
- Get a dedicated IP address. All senders receive an IP address when they register their first mailbox. However, by default, they operate from a shared IP address, i.e., an address that belongs to multiple users at once. It means that they also share a reputation. Therefore, if you try to improve your deliverability while sharing an IP address with a spammy sender, it will become a task in futility. A dedicated IP address belongs to you and only you, letting you build your reputation and increase deliverability without worrying about any third parties.
- Solidify your sender identity. If spam filters and internet service providers want to know more about you, provide them with that knowledge. Make your sender ID as detailed as possible, from adding your photo ID, phone number, and physical location of your company, to turning your email signature into a virtual business card visible to all your recipients. Additionally, you must make sure that your DNS records are set up properly.
- Check your sending lists. It’s hard to overestimate the importance of using hand-curated data when building a list of recipients. If you obtained contact data from any other lists or used a premade database, you must go through each email address on your list and verify it. It will allow you to remove non-existent or irrelevant addresses before they can harm your reputation as a sender. The best way is to save yourself some time and build your sending list manually from scratch so that you feel confident about every name in it.
- Choose a credible service provider. If you’re new to B2B outreach, we suggest using a platform that is designed for helping beginners fine-tune their email campaigns, craft templates, and protect their data. Additionally, platforms like Gmail are well-known among internet service providers and have an advanced system of recognizing and preventing spam emails and phishing attacks.
- Keep improving your templates. It’s important to choose the right tone and style for your templates. Your goal is to appeal to your prospects without coming off as pushy or obnoxious. In many cases, you can achieve that goal by sticking to three DON’Ts.
- Monitor your performance. The best way to keep your deliverability growing is to keep a close eye on your progress. While you can’t sneak a peek into your recipients’ mailboxes, there are many programs and tools that keep you posted on your outreach and allow you to view all your metrics in one place. If you want to make sure that your campaigns always hit the spot and nothing is lost to technical issues or the wrath of spam filters, we suggest picking a tool that fits all your needs before you get started.
Give your deliverability a boost with Folderly
So, you’ve learned some fresh tips, now you know the way. In order to make sure you started right, you can execute your first steps together with Folderly. This service requires neither installation nor multiple registration and subscription steps. Just grab a 7-day trial version, get comprehensive reports on your deliverability, and enjoy the synergy of new-level email analysis technology and human approach to improving cold outreach.