5 Ways to Improve Your Email DeliverabilityNovember 20, 2012 By Colleen Kazemi
There are more digital marketing channels today than ever before, but none of them have surpassed email in terms of effectiveness. In fact, increased access to email via mobile devices may have actually widened the gap between email and other platforms. A recent CMO Council study found that open and clickthrough rates are significantly higher this year than they were two years ago.
This means that ensuring your emails are opened and read by your customers and prospects is more important now than ever before. With the holiday season approaching, how do you separate your valuable messages from all the spammers out there in order to make it past junk filters and reporting buttons?
Gmail is a good place to start on your email deliverability project. It's the most popular email client with more than 350 million users worldwide and it has some of the smartest spam filters in the world. Here are five tips for making sure your marketing emails make it to Gmail recipients:
1. Convince your audience to label your emails. To avoid tripping Gmail's mysterious junk filters, simply ask readers to click the "not spam" button, which lets Google know that you're an approved sender - not just for that reader, but for others as well. The Hilton Honors program, for instance, adds a header on every message saying "Priority Inbox Users, please click the '+ Arrow' above to ensure that you see your latest offers." Google puts a premium on user input and trusts the community to tell it what they want to receive (and what's not welcome).
2. Make it easy to unsubscribe. This may seem counterintuitive at first, but the easier you make it to unsubscribe, the less trouble you'll see from frustrated recipients. If subscribers who no longer want email from you can't figure out how to remove themselves from your list, they'll simply report you as spam, which affects your reputation and inbox placement for those who really do want your emails. This also goes for senders who don't have an automated unsubscribe function or who take too long to scrub unsubscribes from their lists. Your recipients aren't going to be happy when you pop up in their inbox after they've taken steps to remove you.