Playing It Safe: 8 Tips to Avoid Your Email Campaigns Landing in the Spam Folder


The increase in email marketing in recent years has prompted popular email platforms to implement more aggressive spam filters. This has made it more difficult for businesses to get a message to their target audience, and email marketing experts have had to make some major adjustments to beat these new filters. Fortunately, there are some solid pieces of advice that businesses can follow to make sure their email campaigns stay out of spam folders.

First, consulting a professional digital marketing agency like goes a long way to creating an effective email marketing campaign. For those who are developing their own email strategies, here are nine critical things to avoid.

Using an Inorganic Email List

Sending emails to an audience that is not engaged with the content being provided is a sure way to get an email campaign sent to the spam folder. To avoid this, email lists should be created organically over a longer period. Businesses should avoid renting, purchasing, or using shared email lists. Additionally, never use email harvesters to scrape emails from any website.

Only Allowing Subscribers to Opt-In Once

Email lists are often built through tools like dialogue boxes that ask website visitors to sign up for company updates and offers. However, the best way to ensure subscribers stay engaged with the content provided is by asking them to opt into the email campaign twice. This proves that the subscribers have a real interest in the business and will actively look for more information.

Using an Email Address That is not Authenticated

One of the tactics that inbox providers have developed to avoid spam is placing less trust in email domains that have not been authenticated. Authenticating an email domain is not necessarily a simple process, but doing so increases the chances the message will reach the email subscriber rather than getting lost in the spam folder. Businesses can use Sender Policy Framework (SPF), Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM), or Domain-Based Message Authentication and Conformance (DMARC) to get the job done.

Ignoring Email List Cleanliness

As a list matures, some people may unsubscribe on their own. However, most who are no longer interested in the emails being sent will simply mark them as spam or ignore them. This will significantly lower the email’s engagement rate, which is a sure way to get messages sent to the spam folder. To avoid this, the email list must be scrubbed regularly to remove bounced emails and unengaged users.

Operating from a Blacklisted Email Domain

Email domains that have a poor reputation among subscribers will be blacklisted by inbox providers, making them automatically appear in the spam folder. To avoid this, businesses should be sure subscribers are using a double opt-in option, remove any unengaged subscribers, and be sure all emails provided are real and valid. It is essential to monitor delivery rates for signs the business has been blacklisted.

Limiting Subscriber Options

Businesses should always provide new and existing subscribers with the choice of how often they receive emails. This will reduce the risk of recipients unsubscribing from the list because of getting emails too frequently. This puts them in control of how often they engage with business and keeps the businesses engagement rate high.

Ignoring Email Metrics

Email metrics are how a business can track the performance of their campaign. Ignoring the metrics can result in sending emails that are useless with poor delivery and engagements rates. Doing this will doom most of the messages to the spam folder of their recipients.

Providing Irrelevant Content

Sending emails for the sake of sending emails is not a good strategy. The content should be relevant and encourage engagement with the business. If emails contain filler information, they are more likely to be marked as spam by the recipients.

The Bottom Line

Email marketing is a valuable tool for businesses to get messages out to their customers. However, they must use it responsibly to avoid being marked as spam. Avoiding the things listed above will help businesses keep their customers engaged and coming back for more.