Restore Email Sender Status to Healthy

Written by: Sheryll ChuaContributors: Marie Vitkova

The most common reason for the downgrade of email sender status is high bounce rate (particularly hard bounces). To restore to a healthy email sender status, you must find out what's causing the bounces and eliminate these contacts from the mailing list. (See also our articles on purchased lists and preventing spam traps). Here are a few things you can do:

Analyze the recent email reports

When did the high hard bounce rate occurred? Did they occur in more than one emails? Are you sending to the same list?

FunnelBud automatically unsubscribes hard bounces. If the high bounce rate occurred in only one email, it's most likely that the next send-out will have way less bounce rate as those bounces have already been unsubscribed. You can check the bounces and see if you can spot incorrect email address syntax that you can still correct and resubscribed these contacts manually.

If the high bounce rate occurred in more than one emails, are you continuously adding contacts to the database? Contacts from form signups are generally safe, unless they misspelled their emails or used disposable emails, which is not often the case. But contacts that are imported from another system, manually or via integration, is often susceptible to bounces.

Where are these contacts from? How were they collected? Make sure that you are only importing contacts who have given their permission to add them to your database. If you are collecting these email addresses manually, check for wrong email address syntax manually. If a lot of new contacts have been added, you may exclude them in the next send-out to lessen bounce rate. If that send-out turned out to be okay, you can include all or part of the new contacts in the succeeding send-out.

If the high bounce rate occurred in more than one email but no new contacts are being added to the database, it's possible that hard bounces from the previous send-out were not unsubscribed automatically. You can export the list of hard bounces from these send-outs and import them to a list and unsubscribed manually.

List cleaning

If after doing everything above, you are still having high bounce rate, the step next to do is use a list cleaning service. Make sure that you choose a list cleaning service that can identify and remove invalid addresses, disposable domains, and role addresses. These types of addresses can put an email sender status at risk for high bounces rates and spam complaints. They may also be able to provide limited help with toxic addresses such as spam traps. There is no particular list cleaning service that can remove all harmful addresses, but it can help with an older list. Contact your Project Manager if you need help with list cleaning.

Send regularly to a small number of engaged recipients

With list cleaning, you can create segments of "safe" contacts, those where you're unsure and the harmful ones get unsubscribed.

When recovering back to healthy sender status, it's best to send regular email communication to a small segment of safe contacts who will help with increasing engagement, more emails will get into the inbox.

Over time, you can start adding the remaining contact lists. Ideally, you want to create multiple small segments of 100 - 500 contacts and schedule each email send on a separate day. This will allow you to check each email report separately and react in case there is a large number of hard bounces.

The goal always is to eliminate possible hard bounces before you send an email. If you consistently have less bounce rate, eventually the email sender status will return to Healthy.