What is Deliverability?
Email deliverability is how you measure the success of your emails reaching the inbox without bouncing or being marked as spam. If you have issues with high bounces, flagging spam filters, or low engagement, you may have email deliverability issues. In this article, we’ll take a look at identifying deliverability issues and we’ll explore some quick, easy-to-implement fixes that you can use to help build your sending reputation and improve the success of your email campaigns. A lot happens between clicking "send" on an email and subscribers seeing the email in their inboxes. When an inbox provider (such as Gmail, Comcast, or Yahoo) receives an email, it is run through a multi-step review process that has one of three results:
- the message is delivered to the inbox
- the message is delivered to a spam or junk folder
- the message is blocked altogether
How does your campaign get to the inbox?
Think of Delivra as the delivery truck for a package. When the package reaches an apartment, the doorman (the ISP) chooses whether or not to accept the package. When the package is accepted, you have a successful delivery. But from there, the package still has to make it up to the correct apartment (the subscriber's inbox). If it makes it all the way to the recipient, you have successful deliverability. The most influential component of your email's deliverability is your sender reputation.
What influences my sender reputation?
Ultimately, it's up to your subscribers. When subscribers reply to your emails, add your address to their address book, or even simply engage with your email by opening and clicking, they are positively influencing your sender reputation. On the other hand, activities, like putting your email in the junk folder or marking your message as spam, have a negative impact. Over time, those negative actions could play a big role in your deliverability, so it's best to identify problems early and monitor your Analytics regularly.
Do you have a deliverability problem?
Delivra helps you maintain strong delivery by automatically tossing out invalid email addresses (such as emails without the "@") as well as managing bounces and unsubscribes. But if you notice your campaigns have decreased performance (low open rates and higher-than-normal bounces), you may have a deliverability problem. As previously mentioned, it's important to keep an eye on your Analytics. Delivra offers a number of reports in the Analytics dashboard to assist. For instance, in Account Overview, you can easily see Delivery & Tracking Statistics over the last 6 months (or any specified time range) and keep tabs on how your campaigns are trending: Additionally, in Delivery Statistics, you can easily monitor success rates of your campaigns sent:
What you can do to improve Delivery & Deliverability
If you pick up on any trends that indicate a deliverability problem, there are several strategies you can implement to make a positive impact.
- Authenticate your domain. We highly recommend setting up SPF and DKIM Authentication to show email providers you are legitimate and avoid any potential delivery issues that may arise. Click here to learn more about the setup process.
- Monitor your contact growth. If there is unexpected growth in your contacts, you could have a problem with spam bots (we'll address that in a second) or unwanted contact imports into your account. In Analytics, Delivra offers a Subscriber Activity report that shares a month-by-month view into contact join counts.
- Add Captcha to your Subscribe Forms. If you are seeing an unexpected spike in your audience, double-check that your subscribe forms have a Captcha block. This simple addition to your form lets you know the email addresses in your contacts were genuine web visitors who subscribed and have expressed interest in your company. Learn more about building forms.
- Use a Confirmed opt-in. To double down on your web form security, send new subscribers a confirmation email with a link to click to verify their address. This will ensure you only send emails to real people who want to hear from you. Learn more about creating this type of campaign in your account.
- Create a Preference Center. Deliverability is at it's best when you’re delivering targeted and relevant content to opted-in subscribers in expected cadences. By creating a preference center, your audience has a choice in what content is most relevant to them, which means they are more likely to engage with the emails they receive. Learn more about forms.
- Perform a list cleanup. Identify existing subscribers who haven't engaged with your emails over a long period of time. Delivra offers a number of segment clause options to identify subscribers who are not engaging. Easily use our segment tools to identify those who have "slipped away" through inactivity or have a low engagement score. Based on their inactivity, it's likely that the recipient does not monitor that inbox anymore, or they have just genuinely become uninterested. Once identified, you can attempt to re-engage them or remove them altogether from receiving emails going forward.
Deliverability isn't a one-and-done task. Monitor your delivery and tracking statistics regularly. Keep your lists clean. And most importantly, keep delivering the content that your subscribers are excited to receive so they continue to engage with you.