[Updated] 10 Tips to Prevent Your Emails Landing in Spam
Written by
Ninad Pathak
Ninad Pathak

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[Updated] 10 Tips to Prevent Your Emails Landing in Spam

Published : June 16, 2020 | Updated : January 12, 2024

Fed up of spam emails? Worse, you don’t want your email landing in spam. We’ve got you.

While some emails are meant for spam, many are not. Mastering the techniques to prevent emails from landing in spam involves both art and science, and we’re passionate about both.

Email marketing is a crucial tool for online business promotion, offering a fast and effective way to convert subscribers into customers.

Email deliverability isn’t always precise, often leaving senders puzzled. Your emails might land in spam due to various factors, from the health of your email list to your authentication status.

However, we know several effective methods to get your emails back in the inbox quickly.

Let’s dive right into it.

What is spam email?

We’ve spent a lot of time understanding spam email and know exactly what it takes now to reach inboxes.

Spam email is any email that doesn’t come from a genuine source and has phrases of text that are previously classified as spam by users or by the spam filtering algorithm.

5 Methods That Could Make You An Email Spammer

Even seasoned email marketers can end up using methods that are now considered spam email. The spam filtering algorithms are no longer rule-based. They’re AI-based algorithms that learn and understand emails better than humans.

Here are 5 methods that will guarantee your emails land in the spam folder.

1. Buying email lists

Many businesses are victims of this tactic. If your competition is bigger than you, you might be tempted to purchase a list of customer emails. And that’s all fine until you start sending emails to them.

Here’s what you’ll see when you send your first email:

  • A very high percentage of emails will be reported as spam: You should always aim for 0 spam reports. So 1-5% of your email list reporting you will have a big impact.

  • A lot of unsubscribers: The spam reports will still be lower than unsubscribers. Many people don’t know the spam report buttons and hence will only unsubscribe.

  • Replies from active email users asking you to remove them from the list: Those who don’t know how to unsubscribe will just ask you to remove them.

Don’t see the problem? Once email spam filters see such a bad engagement for your emails, they will slowly start sandboxing your emails. And the longer it continues, the lower inboxes you’ll reach.

Grow organically. Always. It takes time, but if you take it slow and steady, you will end up with subscribers and customers who are looking forward to your emails and products.

2. Your customers have a love-hate relationship with your emails

If customers already don’t like your emails, you’re on your way to being categorized as an email spammer.

You use the best animations and graphics in your emails; why would your customers dislike them?

The days of flashy emails receiving the highest engagement are gone. Sending them once in a while to showcase products or product updates is perfect. Sending only those types of emails isn’t.

Go personal. Your email should read like it’s sent to just one person. And the person reading it should feel the same. Who wants to read an email addressed to “everyone”?

3. You chose an email service provider without any research

A lot of newer email service providers are in it for the short-term money. They spend a hundred dollars on attracting beginner marketers. Allow them to spend any email without any filtering or guidance, and once the domain reputation or IP reputation goes bad, your emails start landing in spam.

In this case, if your emails are landing in spam, there’s not much you can do unless the email service provider takes steps to improve the IP reputation.

Start looking for a better email service provider. Your time would be better used to search for a new email service provider who knows how to improve email deliverability.

4. Your emails are the same as your competitors

Customers are loaded with emails every day. And if you “don’t want to be one more email” in their inbox. You may choose to send an email only once in their lifetime. That’s a good thought, but is it good marketing?

If your customers forget they ever subscribed to you, which is very likely with infrequent email senders, your emails are going to be unsubscribed.

When subscribers opt out of your list, email spam filters begin classifying you as an email spammer. So what should you do?

Send more relevant emails. Depending on your audience preference, your email-sending frequency has to change.

With businesses as your customers, you can reach out to them once a week and still grab a place in their heads.

With direct consumers, you need to email more often. Even daily emails work great. Consumers are subscribed to a million brands, and you need ours to stay on top of their mind for their next purchase.

5. Hiding your email authenticity

You may want to hide the sending IP, and DNS information and could even use a dummy domain to send an email for privacy reasons. Even if these are extreme situations, they aren’t unpopular. Email spammers very often hide their identity to portray themselves as some other brand.

If you haven’t updated your information correctly, your emails will show a “potential spam email” warning for Gmail users – Which most likely are 50+% of your users!

Be honest and genuine. Branding is all about personality. People love the voice behind the brand. So many people are fans of Apple because of how Steve Jobs conveyed his message to them.

So be the voice your customers want to hear. A catchy subject line might get your customers to open your emails a few times. But if they don’t like what’s in the email, they’ll stop looking.

Aim to develop a deep bond with them. Respond to them if they send you an email back. Be the person they want emails from. It’s a slow process but takes you towards certainty in business.

And always use a genuine email address and name to send emails from. Deliver what you promise in the subject line instead of creating a click-bait one just for open rates. It helps in the long term!

How to keep your emails out of spam?

1. Create your own email list

While email is crucial for sending key updates to stakeholders, order confirmations, or security notices, its effectiveness is lost if those emails don’t reach inboxes or target disinterested recipients. To maintain email integrity, you should avoid:

  • Renting, buying, or co-registering email lists from third parties.
  • Sharing your list with partners or using a list that’s been shared.
  • Collecting emails through scraping or bots, also known as email harvesting, which will likely land you in the spam folder.

Cultivating an email list of individuals genuinely interested in your content is essential for fostering engagement. Building your list organically is the most beneficial approach in the long run.

It might not be the quickest or easiest method to expand your list and audience, but it’s undoubtedly the most effective.

2. Implement a Double Opt-In Process

Ensuring that recipients have truly agreed to join your email list is key to maintaining a robust and enduring list.

A double opt-in process, which involves sending a confirmation or welcome email that asks subscribers to take a specific action (like clicking a link or checking a box to agree to terms), verifies that they genuinely want to receive your emails.

Once this step is completed, they are officially added to your mailing list.

Adopting a double opt-in strategy is effective for confirming a recipient’s real interest in your content, which helps keep your engagement and delivery rates high and reduces the likelihood of encountering spam traps.

3. Authenticate Your Email

Proving your email is legitimate is crucial. Authentication helps your emails reach inboxes instead of spam folders.

Use methods like SPF (which checks if your email comes from an authorized server), DKIM (which ensures your email hasn’t been altered in transit), DMARC (which uses SPF and DKIM to verify emails), and BIMI (which attaches your logo to emails for easy recognition).

4. Clean Your Email List Regularly

It’s normal for people to stop wanting your emails. Focus on keeping your list filled with engaged subscribers by regularly removing those who don’t interact, which helps improve your email’s chance of reaching inboxes.

5. Avoid Email Denylists and Monitor Your Reputation

Your email’s reputation matters. To avoid being marked as spam or ending up on a denylist, use best practices like double opt-in for subscribers and keep an eye on your email performance.

6. Comply with Internet Privacy Laws

Following laws like CAN-SPAM, CASL, GDPR, and CCPA is crucial for email senders. These laws help protect privacy and ensure your emails are welcome in recipients’ inboxes.

7. Provide an Email Preference Center

Let subscribers choose how often they hear from you. An easy-to-use preference center can help keep subscribers happy and engaged.

8. Monitor Your Email Engagement Metrics

Keep an eye on important metrics like spam complaints and open rates to understand how well your emails are performing. Adjust your strategy based on these insights.

Start with the following basic metrics:

Spam rate (keep it below 0.3%)
Open rates
Click-through rates
Delivery rates

9. Send Relevant Content

Make sure your emails are interesting and relevant to your subscribers. Sending content that matters to them helps keep engagement high.

The next time you draft an email, consider the following before hitting send:

  • Is the email new, urgent, or relevant information with my recipients?
  • Is the update about this topic shared before? Is it too soon to send another update?
  • Do all of my subscribers need to know this information? Or is it important to update a specific segment of my list instead?
  • Will this email be valuable to a recipient?

Finding what email content works best for your brand often involves trial and error, so feel free to try new things and experiment with new styles of copy as you get to know your recipients.

10. Use Spam Checkers

Before sending out a campaign, use spam checkers to see how likely your email is to be marked as spam. This can help you make adjustments to improve deliverability.

Netcore’s email testing offers a spam-checking feature, revealing potential performance against top industry spam filters, along with inbox previews and URL checks. This insight allows you to preemptively address issues, enhancing your chances of hitting the inbox on your first attempt.

Stop emails from going to spam

Email marketing presents the distinct challenge of catering to diverse audiences with varied content preferences. Gaining deeper insights into your audience’s email preferences enhances your strategy.

The outlined strategies offer a starting point to align with your audience’s needs. From there, the ball is in your court. Boosting your email engagement increases your chances of bypassing spam filters and securing a spot in the inbox—it’s your responsibility to maintain that position.

Go ahead and book a demo with us to get the best features for your email marketing campaigns.

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Written By: Ninad Pathak