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Five ways to improve email deliverability

Hinson_Todd

Todd Hinson

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BY TODD HINSON
Business Columnist

Monday, October 2, 2017

Junk emailers, phishers and spammers are an unpleasant reality in today’s world of electronic communications.

Their actions can make it challenging for legitimate organizations to get through spam filters and have their email messages delivered and read.

According to the Radicati Group, which provides research on email, security, digital messaging and social networking, half of the 205 billion emails sent worldwide daily are business emails. On average, three of every 10 emails are read, with an average click-through rate of about 6 percent. With a whopping 70 percent of emails going unread, it’s safe to assume that many of these unopened emails are rerouted to the spam folder.

There are steps you can take to help make sure your email is delivered as intended and gets the recipients’ attention.

Avoid spam trigger words and characters: Spam trigger words are words in the subject line, header or email body that set off the “spam alarm” and flag your email, sending it straight to the spam folder.

These words can be anything, but most pertain to commonly used commerce, finance, marketing and income words and phrases such as “clearance,” “buy direct,” “no fees,” “lowest price,” “save up to,” “earn money,” “click below,” “you have been selected” and more. Beeketing, a digital marketing blog, has a great infographic that lists common spam trigger words by category.

Punctuation overuse, like all caps and exclamation points, can also cause deliverability issues.

Balance images with text: While a full-screen image that includes text within the image is eye-catching, most spam filters see that as an image-only message and are less likely to deliver it as intended.

Use clear, actionable language in subject lines: Yes, it’s important to make a subject line catchy, but it’s more important that it reaches the addressee. Best practices call for a subject line that accurately reflects the email’s content.

Focus on the “WIIFM:” Content should answer the question, “What’s in it for me?” This can be as simple as, “Thanks for your interest in XYZ, we appreciate your time.” Be sure to clearly focus on the deliverable, so the reader immediately perceives value in the communication.

Be brief: Do you read long emails to the end? Probably not — so it’s easy to assume that your audience doesn’t either. Get to the point, and your customers will appreciate your brevity and respect for their time.

Considering spam filter triggers while you’re developing your messages will help improve deliverability and addressee engagement.

Todd Hinson is co-owner of Allegra Design Marketing Print in Rocky Mount.

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