The Role of an IP Address Reputation In the Context of Email Deliverability: Main Points and Proven Tips

Author
Vladislav Podolyako
Published
May 06, 2022
Reading duration
6m

The majority of people, including both newbies and professionals, tend to underestimate the importance of an IP address reputation. But in reality, if you take good care of your company’s prestige in the eyes of Internet providers, you’ll get a much higher chance of attracting new hot leads, nourishing your existing audience, and boosting your revenue.

Sending electronic letters and launching marketing campaigns via email includes checking and improving your organization’s IP address grade, also recognized as IP reputation (in other words, a sender score). This particular grade also reflects how productive the level of delivering your emails is and how well you communicate with your audience. This is precisely why you should be careful about how Internet Service Providers (ISPs) see you and, most importantly, how to appear better from their point of view. But first, let’s see in-depth what IP reputation is.

What is IP Reputation

The concept of an IP address reputation isn’t difficult to grasp. Just like in real life, we all have reputations. How we behave, what we say, and what content we share — all these factors affect how others perceive us, right? Well, in the Internet reality, it’s just the same.

Each email sender is evaluated on a range from “trustworthy” to “suspicious.” If you keep distributing content that looks like utter spam, the system will remember all data about your potentially malicious activity and direct your letters to the spam folder. In other words, you’ll get a bunch of spam complaints, which, clearly, won’t benefit neither your sender’s IP reputation nor email deliverability. For this reason, unless you don’t want email service providers to ban your letters from coming into users’ inboxes, constantly check if your IP reputation is “in great shape”.

Your IP Reputation VS the Level of Your Email Deliverability

Do you think IP reputation influences how well your email deliverability process goes? If you think so, you’re right. The extent of your IP address reputation is a decisive factor in whether your messages end up in a user’s inbox, their spam folder, or get rejected in the first place. For this exact reason, most email service providers consider that your IP reputation is important. So do your best to keep your IP reputation grade high and avoid even the potential of having spam complaints. In general, make sure the data from your account makes you seem trustworthy.

Okay, so IP addresses must be seen as “good” to get to the clients. But still, why is this data so crucial and all the excitement regarding sender reputation so loud? We’re about to tell you, but first, let’s see why it’s vital to distinguish between the most popular IP addresses and know what you’re dealing with.

Shared IP Address vs. Dedicated IP Address: Chief Dissimilarities

It may come as a surprise to some people that the kind of IP address you’re using makes a huge difference in terms of web reputation, but it’s true. There are several kinds of IP reputations, dependent on which IP address you resort to: dedicated, shared, or none at all. Let’s see the discrepancies among them.

  • No IP reputation — if you’ve just recently created a new account and, thus, a new reputation, your emails may get blocked or directed to a spam folder. In this case, you’re a new sender and your “no reputation” status pretty much equals a “bad reputation” one. The system can’t trust you. And, if a user reports your message as “spam,” the mail server may immediately block your IP address. Because of this, you want your sending IP address to have a reputation.
  • Shared IP address reputation — this means that the IP address you’re sending from is shared with other accounts. Some of them can be bad and others are good, so this is pretty random. What you should keep in mind is that a shared IP address isn’t entirely a bad thing. If you’re a small email sender, and you enlist on an account with a credible email service provider, your messages will be mixed with other credible senders to ensure proper email delivery. If you’re, however, a large sender, you may get on the list with services that allow spammers to send their malicious messages on the same IP address as you. So that’s kind of tricky.
  • Dedicated IP reputation — this one is best mainly for large email senders. In comparison to other IP addresses, a dedicated IP address means that you have full control over how reputable your address is. So, for example, if you send emails to approximately 100,000 users, this is your option. The only thing is that with a dedicated IP address, you have to perform an IP warming up.

How can Unknown Users (New Senders) Build a Good IP Reputation?

If you’re new at email delivery and you’ve just created a new IP address, be sure to give it a good reputation. For this, you’ll have to do some warming up. This process involves sending particular Internet Service Providers a certain volume of the most committed subscribers you have. Moreover, this happens for a specific period of time, but the results are well worth it. With IP warming, you can prove to your email service providers that they can trust you. This, in turn, paves the way for your good domain reputation.

Best Tools for Checking Your IP Reputation

By now, you’ve figured out what type of an IP address you’re using (shared or dedicated) and how to build a great sender score if you’re a new user. What’s next? The answer is simple: you have to find out how good your IP reputation is. Here is the best software on the market to assist you in that:

  • Folderly — the service is on the list of the top software for increasing email deliverability. The motto is “We make sure your emails don’t go to spam.” Besides this, the app can do a bunch of other things, like content analysis, spam filters (obviously), and suggestions to improve your deliverability rate.
  • Google Postmaster Tools — this is one of the finest and most reliable tools out there. Postmaster Tools will help you see things like IP addresses’ sending volumes, domain and IP reputations, as well as delivery lapses. All the useful stuff.
  • Microsoft SNDS — the software offers a Smart Network Data Services (SNDS), providing data on your IP reputation (duh), the number of spam traps, and the frequency of spam complaints toward your address. 
  • Cisco Senderbase — Cisco is known for its real-time tracking of your sender score. This email service provides data on your IP reputation, spam sends, and other useful stuff. 

What’s All the Fuss About IP Reputation?

At this point, you know that IP and domain reputation are a terrific part of any successful email campaign. The problem with it, though, is that people still very much underestimate it. Only recently have they realized that no matter how great other efforts put into your email marketing campaign are, you still won’t be able to reach your full potential if your letters keep getting into spam. That’s why you need to keep track of all valuable data points regarding the status of your IP address

So don’t underestimate the importance of IP reputations. Instead, check them from time to time, improving your sending performance as you go. And for best results, rely on the above-mentioned tools!

Vladislav Podolyako
Author:
Vladislav Podolyako
Founder & CEO
Vlad’s decades of entrepreneurial wisdom and business building experience have allowed him to successfully mentor a diverse group of business owners, entrepreneurs in growing their companies. A recognized expert in the areas of transforming organizational culture and leadership development, B2B Sales, Marketing, spent more than 10 years building technology products, with a background in communication networks and electronic device engineering.

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