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If your store is starting to ramp up its eCommerce email marketing with Mailbeez, there are a few things worth running over before you begin to make sure everything stays on the straight and narrow; and when we say straight and narrow, we mean making sure your emails are only going to users who have agreed to receive them.

Avoiding the spam trap

If you were to analyze your own email inbox behavior, you would probably notice that as emails arrive to your inbox, even if you have requested to receive them, they are either deleted straight away, or marked as spam; and it this second action that is the most devastating to the email sender.

When a customer marks a lovingly created email message as spam, a message gets pinged under the radar back to their ISP. If they run Hotmail, it would be sent to Hotmail, Gmail to Gmail – you get the picture. On its own there is not too much to worry about, but if tens, and worse, hundreds of your email recipients start to hit that spam button, the ISP will start to watch your activity, and if it deems that you are engaging in spammer behavior, will block your emails from their service (known as blacklisting) in one fell swoop. The bad news is that most analysts believe a spam rate of 0.01% is enough to get you noticed by an ISP – a frighteningly low number, and, once you are on a least, it is nigh on impossible to get removed from it.

Ok,enough scary stuff, what can you do to minimize the risk of getting blacklisted?

Tips to stay off the blacklist radar

1. Never, ever buy a list of emails or scrape addresses from a website or other source – they didn’t agree to receive email from you, so you can expect a large number to mark your emails as spam. On a marketing point, it will also do no favours for your brand’s integrity. In all seriousness, never ever do this, it is a sure fire way to a whole heap of problems.

2. This goes hand in hand with the first point – only email recipients that have clearly and explicitly signed up to receive emailshttp://bit.ly/vPOhJO from your store. This means keeping the sign up process clear (don’t shroud it within your checkout and surprise them later with an email they didn’t realize they had signed up to) and straightforward.

3. What do you think will happen if your email recipients don’t hear from you for months on end after they have signed up to receive your emails? They will of course forget that they ever signed up, and once your newsletter or other promotional email comes through, there is a high chance your email will be marked as spam.

Instead, it is good practice to send a reminder email before the main newsletter, stating that your store will soon begin to send newsletters, and, would the customer still like to be on the list? This one example of email etiquette will of course reduce your list as customers unsubscribe, but that is better than those same customers marking your emails as spam later on.

4. Always ask your recipients to add your sender address to their address book or contact list. Once added to a recipient’s contact list or address book, your email will be ‘whitelisted’ and arrive safely at its intended destination.

5. To make sure your store’s Mailbeez emails are newsletter subscriber status friendly, remember to install the Newsletter Subscriber Add-On today: http://bit.ly/vPOhJO . This handy module checks your store’s inbuilt newsletter subscriber list before sending any Mailbeez mail, ensuring that all Mailbeez generated emails fully respect your customer’s newsletter preferences.

*In our next blog post, we will cover how to improve email deliverability, and how an incorrect choice of colours, fonts or language can directly impact open rates.*****

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