Let's say you just crafted a perfect email to your customers. It's clever, exciting, and beautifully designed. But what if that email doesn't get delivered to 50 percent of your list? That's frustrating, to say the least.
But how could that happen? It could be that your email sender reputation isn't up to snuff. Let's explore the factors that can impact your email delivery rate and how to boost your chances to get those important messages into inboxes.
What Is Sender Reputation?
First, let's define the sender's reputation. As Sendinblue puts it:
"Sender reputation refers to the reputation of your email sending IP address that signals to email inbox providers whether or not you’re a spammer. It’s based on factors such as the content quality, quality of contacts, and engagement levels of previous emails sent from your IP address."
There are two factors that can impact your sender reputation and, therefore, your email deliverability: domain reputation and server IP reputation.
- Domain reputation: This is based often on the domain from which you send your emails. For example, if the email address you use is firstname.lastname@example.org, then lexiscandles.com is the domain, and it has a reputation. Two factors that can impact its reputation are how new it is and how it's classified on the web (e.g., education, entertainment, finance, etc.).
- Server IP reputation: This is assigned based on your email service provider. So if you have a Yahoo email, you will be assigned an IP from them. Alternatively, you could get an IP from your server host, such as GoDaddy. If an Internet Service Provider (ISP) assigns you a low sender score, your messages will start being delivered to spam folders or even rejected from delivery completely.
There are a number of tools you can use to find out your sender reputation. From there, you can determine what next steps you should take to improve your score.
How Do I Improve My Sender Reputation?
There are a number of things you can do to boost your reputation and email deliverability:
- Clean up your list. In order to avoid being penalized by email providers, make sure your list is free of old, invalid, or unengaged email addresses. Before you purge the unengaged emails, try launching one last campaign to win them back. If that doesn't work, it's time for them to go.
- Send relevant, properly formatted emails. This may seem like a no-brainer, but it's critical to supply your subscribers with valuable content. Whether it's a sale, coupon, or new product release, you'll want to make sure your email is clear, concise, and engaging. You need to give your leads and customers a good reason to continue opening your emails.
- Maintain a send consistency. It's important to find the right timing and consistency for your email sends. You'll want to hit send when your readers are most active, which will likely require some good testing and metrics. Doing this will not only increase your open rate, but it will establish consistency with your list so they start knowing when to expect your emails.
- Don't be spammy. There are several things you'll want to avoid doing if you want to stay out of people's spam filters, such as: using a red font, writing in all caps, overusing spam words (free, urgent, cheap, etc.), using too much punctuation, or making HTML errors.
- Write quality subject lines. Avoid the urge to use subject lines that oversell the content of your email. Over-the-top, clickbait-type subject lines might be tempting, but you must resist. If you don't, you run the risk of people getting frustrated and unsubscribing or reporting you. This is not to say that your subject lines shouldn't be exciting – they should strike a balance between being relevant and interesting.
Your brand also plays a role in your email deliverability, open rates, and engagement. People are more likely to open and read emails from brands they trust. So while you take steps to improve your sender reputation and email deliverability, make sure you're also continuing to strengthen your brand, make your brand stand out, and develop brand loyalty.
If you need some guidance on running your email program, StellaPop is here to help. Contact us today to get started down the path of successful email marketing.