When sending email person-to-person, these tips are general guidelines that are not necessarily specific to our email service. By following this guide, it will help reduce the possibility of your email ending up in the recipient's spam folder, or worse, being blacklisted or blocked by their email service provider altogether. This will help you know what commonly triggers mail spam filters to flag an email as spam.
The content of your email
- Use a reputable and well-known email client. This will ensure that the email you send will be properly constructed and communicated.
- By providing email in both HTML and rich text formats, properly constructed email headers, and adherence to specifications for sending an email (SMTP) are fundamental to send good mail.
- Avoid the use of iframes in email message.
- Keep the layout of the message as simple as possible. Avoid complex formatting with email templates.
- Do not use links that contain IP addresses. Detecting an IP address in the content of an email is a big red flag for spam filters.
- Use a personalized greeting to address your email. Generic salutations in the email subject line make your content more likely to appear as unsolicited mail to spam filters.
- If you link to other websites in your message content, ensure that they are reputable sites.
- Be careful about using URL shorteners in your message content. Shortened links are often used by spammers to mask the destination of the link; spam filters often flag messages with shortened links as spam. If you wish to shorten links, consider setting up your own custom URL shortener.
- Avoid using symbols for letters in words; spellings like “Unusu@l”, “dollar$”, and “g00gle” in your emails. These are often classified as spam by spam filters.
- Do not overtly reference topics that are highly recognized as spam such as Rolex watches, Canadian medications, prescription drugs, or financial institutions.
To reduce the chance of your email being flagged as spam. Avoid the following:
- Punctuation, especially exclamations and question marks.
- Using only capital letters.
- Words such as “urgent”, “free”, “guaranteed.”
- Text with spaces between every letter, such as “T h i s”
It is becoming preferable to avoid attaching files to your emails. There are now many sites that offer shareable links to your files that you can provide in your email (Dropbox, Microsoft OneDrive, Google Docs, ownCloud, Nextcloud etc.). Since attachments are a common way of distributing viruses, filters are becoming more strict on attachments. Zip file attachments are a common example of this. If you do send attachments, be sure they are named correctly and the spelling is correct. Also, choose a name that is simple and specific to the nature of the attachment.
If you need to send email to a larger number of recipients that exceeds our sending limits, which falls within our sending limits, then here are some recommendations to ensure delivery both on our system and at other providers:
- Follow all the person-to-person best practices for sending to many recipients.
- Ensure all recipients are active endpoints.
- Our email hosted environment is intended for person-to-person communications.
- Ideally, these recipients are people you already correspond with through email individually.
- If using your own domain name for email, ensure you have set up the domain correctly with all DNS-based sender authentication records (SPF/DKIM/DMARC):
- The more email you send, the more important it is that receivers can authenticate your email is from an authorized source.
- Avoid 'blasting' emails to many people with scripts and tools like mail merge.
Our hosted email platform does not offer bulk email services. We recommend using our GroupList service to send out your messages to the masses. This will ensure your emails are sent out safely and conform to industry best practices for delivering high-volume email. These services include features like email list hygiene, recipient opt-in and unsubscribe management, and content verification to ensure your message does not match typical spammy patterns.
Below is some helpful information for managing your bulk email needs.
We do not offer bulk email services or sending of marketing emails. We recommend you use a reputable bulk email service to send out your content (Constant Contact, Mailjet, GroupList, CleverReach, etc). This will ensure your emails are sent out safely and you do not end up getting blocked. Reputable mailing companies provide software and services to ensure your bulk email is delivered in a manner that mail providers will accept as good mail.
- If you are sending emails to a large number of recipients using our email, please be sure to respect our mail requirements.
- Follow all the person-to-person best practices for creating the content for your message.
If you are sending messages to an email list, ensure you follow the below guidelines:
- Ensure your recipient lists are current and accurate.
- Do not use lists that have been purchased.
- Do not add emails from paste lists.
Sending emails to large numbers of invalid recipients is a clear indicator of spam. Email providers and Internet Service Providers often use common invalid addresses as spam traps. Sending an email to these spam traps can result in your domain or email address being blacklisted.
- Ensure that you’re only sending mail to users who specifically requested it.
- Use confirmed opt-in practices when collecting email addresses for mailing lists to reduce the chances of your messages being considered unsolicited.
- Unsolicited email is more likely to be marked as spam by recipients, leading to you being flagged as a spammer by email spam filters.
- Make sure that if you send email newsletters or communications to your customers, always provide them with a means to remove themselves from your mailing list. Maintain a safe and reputable business website. It should include easy access to any privacy policies and contact information for your business.
Be sure that other companies you allow to include references to your business are reputable. If they send out spam and your company information is referenced in those emails, your domain could be flagged as being related to spam. Conversely, be careful which domains/companies you reference in your emails. If those companies are already flagged for spamming activities, your email could be marked as spam or blocklisted for referencing those domains/companies.
Authenticate with Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM) – This will provide you with a consistent reputation across your domain, regardless of what IPs you send mail from. Read more at what is DKIM and how to enable DKIM on your domain. Publish an SPF record – This will tell us which hosts can send messages from your domain. More information is available at http://www.openspf.org/. Publish a DMARC record – Messages spoofing your domain will appear unauthenticated and therefore be rejected, depending upon your policy disposition. You can learn more about how to enable DMARC on your domain.