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BIMI- Frequently Asked Questions

Last Updated, 2021-06-16 email-authentication email-delivery bimi

This tutorial is a part of the Ultimate guide on BIMI. The objective of this tutorial is to share some of the frequently asked questions by the GradeMyEmail BIMI Validator users. If you have any specific questions around BIMI which are not answered here, then please feel free to use the comments section or raise a ticket on GradeMyEmail.

Note: BIMI is currently at its early stage of adoption, so the information shared in this FAQ might change with time.

Does anyone know if a BIMI needs to be at the primary domain/TLD level, or can it be only at the sending subdomain level?

As per BIMI standard recommendation, your BIMI records need to be published at the organization level, i.e., at the primary domain.

While most mailbox providers will be going with the standard recommendation, few might choose to implement it at a sub-domain level. e.g. BIMI records can be at the organizational or on subdomains to display at Verizon. Therefore, you should refer to the policy documents of top mailbox providers too. 

What is the minimum level of DMARC implementation required for enabling BIMI?

BIMI requires enforcement, so p=quarantine is the minimum level required. 

Can one implement both DMARC and BIMI at the sub-domain level?

Technically, yes, this can be implemented. However, keep in mind that the BIMI specification requires DMARC to be at the organization level, i.e., your primary domain. 

So, the standard recommended practice is to have a compulsory strict DMARC (p=quarantine or p=reject) and BIMI at the primary domain level. You may choose to have dual DMARC. One can be on a subdomain and the other on the organization domain. But, as mentioned, it is compulsory to enforce DMARC policy with at least p=quarantine at the primary organization domain. You can have a DMARC policy like the following too:

  • example.com p=quarantine
  • subdomain.example.com p=reject

I have published the BIMI record, but it's still not visible with the mailbox providers. What can be the reason?

Currently, BIMI is live and in production for everyone using Yahoo (both Yahoo WebMail and Mobile App). 

Suppose your BIMI record shows PASS in the BIMI Validator, and still, the logo is not appearing with Yahoo, then please refer to the following policy guidelines published by Verizon (Yahoo):

  1. A BIMI record exists which points to a valid logo in SVG format
  2. A DMARC policy of "quarantine" or "reject" is in place
  3. The mailing is sent to a large number of recipients (bulk mail; we don't display brand logos for personal emails)
  4. Yahoo/Verizon Media sees sufficient reputation and engagement for the sending email address.

For more details, refer to Verizon Media developer documentation.

On the other hand, if you're facing this problem with Gmail, please wait because Gmail is currently doing a closed BIMI pilot with selected domains only. So unless you have received a communication or invite from Gmail, you won't be able to test BIMI during this beta phase.

By when Gmail will make BIMI available for everyone?

There is no official announcement from Gmail on the exact release date for BIMI. However, experts around the globe are anticipating the most awaited Gmail BIMI support to goes into general availability by summer 2021. 

Can I have an animated logo for BIMI?

Animation is not possible with BIMI.

Gmail BIMI support is still in beta, then how come few brands are still able to show their logos in the preview pane?

Currently, you can get your logo in Gmail using Google Profile & Gmail Annotations. Both have an option to show your company logo. Note: you need to have a google profile/account on the sender domain.

Can I use any custom selector, or does it have to be "default", as mentioned in BIMI specs?

The selector should be default._bimi.domain.com. Currently, mailbox providers are not supporting custom selectors like ourselector._bimi.domain.com.

Does BIMI use the DKIM (d=; i=) or the SPF domain?

By default, the receiving mail server will attempt to fetch the BIMI record for the domain identified by DMARC alignment for the RFC5322.From domain. However, in the case of DKIM alignment, the recipient server will fetch the record from the domain identified in the DKIM "d=" value.

Does my BIMI domain and the SVG hosting domain has to be the same?

You can have any secure URL referenced in the "l=" value of your BIMI record. It does not need to match your primary domain on which you have added the BIMI record.

e.g. you can have BIMI on mydomain.com, and the image can be on myimagehost.com, like the following: 

v=BIMI1; l=https://myimagehost.com/bimi/brandlogo.svg; a=https://vncprovider.com/bimi/vmccertifcate.pem

Should my DMARC policy be set to pct=100 for enabling BIMI?

If you have a DMARC policy with p=quarantine or p=reject with some percentage tag defined, then the value of the percentage tag pct must be set to 100. Else the full DMARC enforcement won't be in place to meet the BIMI requirements.

What are the specifications for the BIMI logo?

BIMI supports only SVG Tiny Portable/Secure (SVG Tiny PS) format logo files. 

SVG Portable/Secure (SVG P/S) is a profile of the SVG Tiny 1.2 format standardized by the W3C. 

The SVG P/S profile is more secure than SVG Tiny 1.2, meaning an SVG Tiny 1.2 image will require specific modifications to be compliant with BIMI. 

How to get a VMC certificate which is required for BIMI?

VMC is currently a mandate only for domains that are invited to participate in the BIMI pilot by Google. So, you should not be bothering much to get a VMC till Google make BIMI available for all.

As of Jun'2021, Yahoo/Version Media do not require VMCs to be set up for BIMI logos to appear. However, you should keep an eye on any updates coming in this regard.

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