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Mastering Email Deliverability: Best Tips & Practices for 2024

Mastering Email Deliverability: Best Tips & Practices for 2024

Ensure maximum success for your email marketing campaigns in 2024 with these expert tips and best practices for email deliverability. Don't let your emails go unnoticed - optimize your strategy now!

In the dynamic world of digital marketing, meticulous planning is the cornerstone of success. From crafting captivating email subject lines to composing compelling content, every detail matters.

As you meticulously weave together each element, from research to design, your goal is clear: to captivate your audience's attention from the moment they receive your email.

However, you wait and aren't pleased once you have the numbers. 

Not only did a few people open your email, but many people on your list didn’t even receive it!

Did you know that for $1 spent on an email marketing campaign, B2C businesses receive, on average, a $42 ROI?

But, these numbers can only be achieved if your email actually reaches the recipient's inbox. 

This blog covers the definition of email deliverability, how it differs from email delivery, and the best practices to ensure a high email deliverability rate. 

What Is Email Deliverability

So, what exactly is email deliverability?

Email deliverability is the rate at which an email is actually sent and received by a recipient in their inbox.

You can calculate the email deliverability rate with the following formula:

Source

If an email is directed to the spam folder or it bounces, the email deliverability rate decreases. 

Once you write an email you believe will impact the recipient—the subject line will entice the recipient enough to open the email—you need to consider: Will the recipient actually receive my email?

Why Does Email Deliverability Matter?

  • Communication Effectiveness: Email deliverability ensures your messages reach their intended recipients, maximizing the effectiveness of your communication efforts.
  • Brand Reputation: High deliverability rates contribute to a positive brand image, showing reliability and professionalism in your email interactions.
  • Engagement and Conversion: Emails that land in the inbox have a higher chance of being opened and acted upon, leading to increased engagement and conversion rates.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Maintaining good email deliverability helps adhere to email marketing regulations, avoid penalties, and preserve your sender's reputation.
  • Cost Efficiency: Improved deliverability means better resource utilization, reducing the time and money spent on crafting and sending emails that never reach their intended audience.

Firstly, by understanding the difference between email delivery and email deliverability.

Email Delivery vs. Email Deliverability: Understanding the Difference

Email delivery refers to the number of emails delivered successfully, irrespective of the folder they reach. It calculates exactly how many emails didn't bounce out of the sent emails.

Email deliverability takes into account the folder in which an email is delivered. It calculates the percentage of emails delivered to the right destination.

For example, if 20 emails out of 100 are delivered to the spam folder, the email deliverability rate is 80%.

Source

Now that we understand the difference between email delivery and email deliverability, let’s dive into  what affects your email deliverability rate. 

How to Improve Email Deliverability?

There are four factors to consider

1. Email Infrastructure

Although everything is on the cloud, email deliverability is still significantly dependent on hardware and software systems.

When you send an email, it's similar to sending a letter via a postal service. You dispatch the letter, and various people, including the postal service and the delivery person, ensure a timely delivery.

Similarly, three hardware and software structures for delivering an email include IP addresses, mail servers, and agents.

Source

If you send out many emails, i.e., your email volume is high, having a dedicated IP that provides a seamless and robust email infrastructure is crucial.

2. Email content

The email content and subject line are crucial aspects that help book engagement and credibility. A compelling subject line and email content will definitely have higher email open rates and longer read times.

Tip: “Talking about email marketing, it’s crucial to incorporate engaging content to capture the attention of your subscribers. Always remember to write unique content that your target audience can relate to, and compels them to not only open but read and interact with your emails. - Vineet Gupta, Founder, The Startup Inc.”

3. Email volume

Have you ever received the same email so many times that it irritates you?

We all have been there, haven't we? 

No one likes a flooded inbox - especially from the same sender. Whether it's promotional campaigns, a big announcement, or the launch of a new product, there are better strategies than flooding your target audience's inbox.

It's a sure-shot way to the spam folder.

Tip: Send emails at fixed intervals and remember when you wish to send an email. Time is a crucial factor that affects email open rates.

4. Sender reputation

Sender reputation is the most crucial factor that impacts your email delivery rate.

When you or any organization sends an email as part of a marketing campaign, the ISP assigns a sender score. The score varies from 0 - 100 and depends on the recipient's actions. 

When your sender score dips, it's a clear sign that recipients are unsubscribing or flagging your email as spam. This can have serious implications for your email marketing efforts, underscoring the importance of maintaining a high sender score.

Tip: Follow the best practices below to ensure a high sender score.

Email deliverability best practices: 8 strategies to remember

1. Avoid buying pre-made email lists

It's never a good idea to buy or rent your email lists. With such lists, people likely won't open or even want your emails, as they need to know you or are interested in what you're offering.

In addition, this strategy goes against the Terms of Service for your email service provider. 

Tip: Create your own email list of potential leads to ensure you target an audience interested in what you offer.

2. Refrain from adding attachments to your email

There are better strategies than adding attachments to cold emails. First, many recipients might consider the email malicious or insecure. Second, the first-hand information in the attachment might go unnoticed.

The chances of your email going into the spam folder increase if you add an attachment.

Tip: Always upload the attachment to your website, add a link in the email, and add a compelling call-to-action button.

3. Beware of “trigger” words

Your email subject line is crucial in ensuring it doesn't go into the recipient's spam folder. Using words like "free" and "no obligation," "guaranteed," etc., ensures your email doesn't go into the spam folder.

Source

Tip: Get creative with your subject lines instead of using trigger words. A few options include:

  • "Were you able to get what you were searching for?"
  • "You are not alone."

4. Keyword stuffing is a big NO

We all know keyword stuffing is a bad practice when writing blogs or articles. But did you know it negatively impacts your emails, too?

Stuffing emails with keywords increases the possibility of Google marking them as spam as the content is written for a robot, not a human. It also harms user experience.

Tip: Make your emails relatable and personable. Use personal anecdotes, expressions, and language to lower your chances of being sent to the spam folder.

5. Smartly re-engage with inactive subscribers

Keeping track of your inactive subscribers is crucial. Sending graymail is as bad as sending redirected emails to the spam folder.

"Graymail" is the set of emails that people subscribe to but don't really want. This increases the chances of them becoming inactive subscribers.

Although it is not spam, sending graymail is problematic as it hurts your overall email deliverability rate.

Tip: Develop re-engagement campaigns that target inactive subscribers. Make sure you consider conditions like last website visit, form submission, email click, etc. The illustration below shows how you an email virtual assistant can use email marketing to re-engage with inactive subscribers.

Source

Here’s a blog to get you started: Mastering Win-Back Emails: Reel Customers Back In

6. Avoid using multiple images for one email

Using the correct number and size of images for your emails is crucial. One huge image or multiple images for one email ensures it is directed to the spam folder.

Always use one or a maximum of two images while ensuring the image size only takes up a little space. 

Tip: Consider optimizing your image size to reduce the email load time and prevent it from being considered spam.

7. Do a thorough grammar check 

When emailing a prospect, there is no scope for wrong spelling or grammar. If a recipient sees one mistake, it tarnishes your organization's image and reduces their trust.

A report by Grammarly stated that as high as 93% of the respondents made such blunders, including typos and spelling mistakes. 

Tip: When editing an email, it's easy to overlook grammatical mistakes. That's why it's vital to be extra vigilant and use tools, if needed, to avoid such issues.

8. Leverage double opt-ins

Opt-ins only sometimes work. Some people accidentally or without their knowledge opt-in to your email subscription, drastically impacting your sender score.

In this case, a subscriber has to take two steps before they are added to your email list.

Source

Leveraging double opt-ins is an excellent solution to overcome this problem. With this practice, you can further validate your email list and ensure that every subscriber has consented to receive your emails.

Email deliverability tools

  • Mailchimp: Offers email deliverability tools such as inbox preview, domain authentication, and personalized recommendations to improve deliverability rates.
  • SendGrid: Provides email deliverability insights, inbox monitoring, and domain authentication tools to help optimize email delivery.
  • Mailgun: Offers email validation, reputation monitoring, and spam filter testing to ensure high deliverability rates for your email campaigns.
  • HubSpot: Includes email deliverability monitoring, SPF/DKIM authentication setup, and engagement tracking to help improve email deliverability.

How do you test a good email deliverability or email deliverability test?

  • Sender Authentication: Verify that your domain has proper SPF, DKIM, and DMARC records set up. Use tools like SPF/DKIM record checkers and DMARC analyzers to ensure these protocols are configured correctly.
  • Email Content and Formatting: Test your email content to ensure it complies with best practices and doesn't trigger spam filters. Avoid using spammy words, excessive punctuation, or misleading subject lines. Tools like SpamAssassin or GlockApps can help assess the spam score of your emails.
  • List Hygiene: Regularly clean your email list to remove inactive or invalid email addresses. Use email validation services to check the validity of email addresses and reduce bounce rates.
  • IP and Domain Reputation: Monitor your sender reputation using services like SenderScore or Barracuda Reputation Block List (BRBL). A good reputation increases the likelihood of your emails reaching recipients' inboxes.
  • ISP and Spam Filter Testing: Send test emails to accounts on various email providers (Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, etc.) and check if they land in the inbox or get flagged as spam. You can use tools like GlockApps or Litmus for comprehensive inbox placement testing.
  • Deliverability Analytics: Analyze email deliverability metrics such as delivery rates, open rates, click-through rates, and bounce rates. Compare these metrics over time to identify trends and areas for improvement.
  • Feedback Loops: Set up feedback loops with ISPs to receive notifications when recipients mark your emails as spam. Use this feedback to identify potential issues and adjust your email-sending practices accordingly.

Enhance email deliverability to improve conversions

In today's competitive digital landscape, ensuring that emails reach recipients and engage them effectively is critical to maximizing the impact of email marketing efforts and achieving sustainable business growth.

Email deliverability optimization is crucial for businesses aiming to improve their conversion rates

By implementing strategies to enhance email deliverability, such as creating and maintaining an engaged subscriber list, crafting compelling subject lines, and adhering to best practices in email marketing, businesses can significantly improve their chances of reaching their target audience's inboxes and ultimately driving more conversions.

Irov is a content marketing specialist, demand generation enthusiast, and team player currently working with 2xSaS. He helps B2B SaaS companies spread the word about their products through engaging content. When he is not working, he likes playing video games on his PS4.

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