Marketing

10 Reasons Your Emails Are Landing in Spam + How to Correct Course

You work hard to craft the perfect email to your clients or prospective clients, so don’t you want to ensure that it’s hitting their inboxes, right? If you’ve sent several emails and aren’t getting a reply, you might start to wonder…is it going to spam?

If you want to ensure your emails are getting to your recipients, then check out these 10 reasons that your emails might be going to spam with tips on correcting them.

10 Reasons Your Emails are Landing in Spam

Filtering is cracking down as there are more and more “junk” emails trying to infiltrate your inboxes these days, however, this means that occasionally, legitimate emails are also being sent to spam unnecessarily. How do you ensure that doesn’t happen?

1. You Didn’t Get Permission to Email

This is one of the most important things to remember when it comes to email marketing. If you don’t get permission from your recipients, this is one of the things that violate the CAN-SPAM Act, which is a law that sets the rules for commercial email and establishes requirements for commercial messages. It gives recipients the right to have you stop emailing them and if senders don’t comply, there are penalties that they receive.

Give your website visitors an “Opt-In” spot on their website so that they can start receiving emails from you. This is where including your calls to action come into play. Did you include a “Sign up for our Newsletter” button? What about “Download our whitepaper?” These are all great ways to get your leads started down the sales funnel by getting their name and email.

Once you have this information, you can start your email marketing, whether it be a drip campaign or monthly newsletters that will entice the verified leads to become clients.

This is much better than simply adding contacts that you may have gotten off of business cards at a conference or luncheon, as you did not receive permission, and this can come off as spam.

2. Your Subscribers Don’t Remember You

Obviously your emails are not spam, but if subscribers don’t remember you, then they may report an email from you as spam. When this happens, the complaint is recorded by the mailbox provider. If this happens too many times, the emails will skip the inbox and go directly into spam. You may have gotten permission from the recipients, but if you don’t make your emails memorable, they may forget and send them to spam.

How do you make sure this doesn’t happen?  Ensure the branding in your emails is memorable, and matches the branding on your website. This includes images, colors, font, tone or voice, anything else that would make the recipients remember you. Lastly, make sure it’s coming from a name that they will recognize.

3. You Have a Misleading Subject Line

According to a survey from Litmus and Fluent, 54% of participants have stated that they felt tricked or cheated into open a “promotional” email because of the subject line. While it’s obviously a great idea to have a strong subject line that makes recipients want to click on it, you need to make sure that what they are clicking on actually matches up with what you are sending.

4. Your Engagement Rates are Low

Did you know that the top webmail providers have stated that they look at how many emails are opened and how many are deleted without being opened as a factor in their spam filtering decisions?

With that being said, if you have low open rate then your emails have a higher chance of being flagged as spam. The average read rate across industries was 24.8% in 2018.

How Can You Increase This Number?

Start by:

Like everything that you do with your marketing strategy, it takes trial and error, so find what works best for your emails and tailor them until they improve and you get the most engagement.

5. You Didn’t Include your Physical Address

Legally, you have to include your valid, physical address. It can be your current street address, a post office box that has been registered with the U.S. Postal Service, or a private mailbox registered with a commercial mail receiving agency established under Postal Service regulations. Whatever it may be, you have to provide it or your emails could risk going into the spam folder.

6. You Don’t Have an Unsubscribe Link

We know…you may want to hold on to your leads for as long as possible, and you may think that what you are sending is incredibly important, but you still have to include an unsubscribe link for subscribers to opt-out if they no longer want to receive your emails. Just include this link at the bottom of your emails so that readers can find them as they scroll down.

Keep in mind that when someone asks to be removed, you need to process that request within 10 business days. It has to be simple, you don’t need to ask them for anything else, can’t charge them a fee, it simply has to remove the email, and the subscribers will not have to take any more steps.

Unsubscribe Link

In the above image, you can see that the Twenty Over Ten September newsletter offers the chance for recipients to “Unsubscribe” near the bottom of the page.

7. Your “From” Information is not Accurate

As a best practice, make sure you include a name in the “from” field that your subscribers are likely to remember, and don’t change it too often.

What Are Some of the Best Options?

  • You could use the name of an individual at the company
  • You can use your company’s name
  • You could even combine the two

Whoever you choose for it to be from, make sure that it is memorable and consistent so that your subscribers come to expect a certain person, which also makes it more memorable.

Twenty Over Ten newsletter

In the above image, you can see that the email for the Twenty Over Ten newsletter comes from Amanda Larson and the Twenty Over Ten marketing blog. Most of our emails like this one from MailChimp will either be from the CMO, Samantha Russell and the marketing team or Director of Marketing, Amanda Larson. This type of consistency makes your emails appear more trustworthy, while also “humanizing” the email blasts.

8. Your Mailbox Usage is Low

When it comes to filtering spam, mailbox providers look at the ratio of active to inactive email accounts on your list. If there are too many inactive subscribers and emails in your recipients, then this will start to raise some red flags.

In order to make sure this doesn’t happen, be sure to clean up your email list periodically of any subscribers who haven’t engaged with your campaigns in a while as there is a good possibility that email is no longer being used.

9. Your HTML Emails Don’t Follow Best Practices

In addition to the text-only emails, many people send HTML emails, as well, so that they can include some branding elements that make your emails more memorable, as this with help with engagement.

Here are some of the best practices for sending HTML emails:

  • Use a maximum width of 600-800 pixels, so that they look good when the client receives them.
  • Keep your image-to-text ratio low. Images are OK to include in your email marketing campaigns, but never send image-only emails with no text.
  • Stick with the basic fonts, don’t use anything too obscure.
  • Keep your HTML code simple and clean.
  • Optimize your images for email by compressing them first.
  • We can’t stress this enough…optimize for mobile.

10. You Used “Spammy” Words

You want to use words in your headlines and emails that capture the attention of your readers, however, be sure that the words that you are using aren’t too “spammy.”

Here Are Some Examples of Common Trigger Words to Avoid:

  • Amazing
  • Subject to Credit
  • Cancel at any time
  • check or money order
  • Congratulations!
  • For Only ($)
  • Free
  • Money Back
  • Great Offer
  • Guarantee
  • Increase your Sales
  • Order Now
  • Risk-Free
  • Special Promotion
  • Winner

For a full list of spam trigger words, check out this blog from HubSpot and do your best to avoid them.

Wrapping It All Up

Email marketing is a huge part to include in your overall campaigns and when done correctly it is extremely beneficial. You are providing useful and valuable information to your subscribers and also working hard to craft the emails. It’s important that you follow the above steps to ensure that all of your hard work is not going to waste by having your emails go to spam!

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About the author

Blair Kelly

Blair is a digital marketing assistant at Twenty Over Ten and has a passion for uncovering what drives online traffic and the highest engagement. She follows more animals on Instagram than humans and her greatest achievement is her daughter, Grey.

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