Deliverability Yesterday, Deliverability Today

When I began working in the world of emails, spam folders and reputation, things were very different than they are now. With respect to deliverability, I think things have significantly improved.

Do you think that it’s getting more difficult to deliver emails into the inbox? Do you think that keeping a high reputation score for your IP addresses and domains is harder than ever? Do you spend a lot of money in complex email marketing programs that are based in deliverability as it used to be? Let me show you another perspective:

    • A few years ago it was much more difficult to deliver emails into the inbox than now. Most of the biggest ISPs had not developed real systems yet to penalize spammers without creating huge false positives. These systems based their strategy by looking for “spam words”, IP addresses history and blacklists with poor flexibility. They were also extremely suspicious of large amounts of volume.
    • Previously, user’s reactivity didn’t count a lot (I’m being generous with the term “a lot”). It didn’t matter whether your recipients opened the email, removed it without opening or made click. Your email could go to the spam folder even when it was very relevant for your clients. Today reactivity is one of the most important parameters to decide how your email will be filtering by the ISPs. If you’ve got a high response ratio (opens, clicks, recipients spending time within an email) then you probably won’t experience deliverability issues.
    • If you think that just by having good infrastructure and list hygiene your emails are going to land in the inbox, you’re damaging your email marketing program. You must go beyond these things because ISPs go beyond them. You need to increase your reactivity figures. How? By sending the email to those users that want to receive it. How? By sending relevant content. How? By knowing your subscribers. How? Test, test, test. Look at your reactivity numbers (purchases, visits from the email, opens and clicks, etc.), create groups and test them. By doing all of these things, you’ll build a much better email marketing program.

In the past you had to just trust the ISPs and their tricky manner to filter your emails regardless of your practices. Today you have to be relevant. With relevance you’ll get response, with response you’ll get engagement, with engagement you’ll get deliverability. Today it’s in your hands.

Jose Ramon Garcia Layos

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Senior Deliverability Manager at Schober Information Group

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