Enhancing Deliverability with ActiveCampaign

Email deliverability is pivotal in ensuring your messages reach the inbox. In 2024, Google and Yahoo updated their email authentication standards to improve spam prevention and account security.

These changes may significantly affect how you conduct email marketing, potentially altering how your emails are delivered to users of these popular email providers.

The good news?

Well, ActiveCampaign recognizes the importance of adapting quickly to these updates. By providing enhanced email deliverability services and tools, ActiveCampaign helps you navigate this new landscape.

First, lets take a look at…

Understanding Email Deliverability

Email deliverability ensures your messages reach your audience’s inboxes effectively. Various factors influence whether an email service provider (ESP), like Google or Yahoo, accepts your emails.

Let me explain them a bit.

Sender Reputation: Your sender reputation significantly impacts deliverability. It’s determined by your email history and how recipients interact with them.

Some of the factors affecting the sender’s reputation are:

  • Email volume
  • Frequency
  • Engagement metrics (opens, clicks)
  • Spam complaints

Authentication: Proving your identity as a sender is fundamental. Authentication protocols verify that your emails are not forged. Below are standard authentication protocols:

  • SPF (Sender Policy Framework): Links your emails to your domain.
  • DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail): Attaches a digital signature to your emails.
  • DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance): Strategic policy for handling your domain’s emails.

Spam Prevention: Your spam rate, the percentage of emails marked as spam by recipients, affects your reputation. Here are a few points on reducing email spam rate:

  • Obtain consent before sending emails.
  • Provide clear unsubscribe options.
  • Avoid deceptive subject lines.

Trust and Security: Establishing trust with recipients guards against your emails landing in the spam folder. Using a verified domain and personalized email content fosters a connection and enhances trust.

Recent Email Changes by Google and Yahoo

In February 2024, Google and Yahoo initiated significant updates that affected email deliverability and authentication standards, particularly for bulk email senders.

Google’s February 2024 Update

Google implemented Gmail service changes, requiring senders to comply with stringent authentication protocols. As a part of these updates, your emails sent to @gmail addresses must pass SPF (Sender Policy Framework), DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail), and DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance) checks to ensure authenticity.

The key is to register your domain with Google Postmaster Tools, a robust platform that provides insights into your email performance, including spam complaint rates, which you must keep under 0.3%. Failing to meet these requirements may harm your sender’s reputation and email deliverability.

Read more on Google’s detailed sender guidelines here.

Yahoo’s Email Policy Revisions

Yahoo has paralleled Google in revising its email policies to fortify users’ trust in its email ecosystem. Like Google, Yahoo emphasizes the need for proper authentication of email senders.

They have set forward similar authentication requirements involving DKIM, SPF, and DMARC protocols. Adherence to these policies is crucial for ensuring that your emails successfully land in Yahoo inboxes and are not marked as spam.

Impact on Email Campaigns

Email campaigns in the coming year will face challenges due to new requirements by Google and Yahoo. These changes affect how your emails are delivered and the steps you must take to ensure your messages reach the inbox.

Sending Volume and Frequency

Bulk senders distributing over 5,000 marketing emails daily must be mindful of sending volume and frequency. Your sending patterns now play a crucial role in deliverability since these metrics are under scrutiny.

To maintain high deliverability rates:

  • Space out your campaign sends to avoid sudden spikes.
  • Continuously review and adjust your sending frequency based on recipient engagement.

Avoiding the Spam Folder

It is essential to adhere to the new authentication standards to prevent your emails from landing in the spam folder. This includes setting up proper DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) and Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC) records.

Compliance with these will help your emails bypass phishing filters and maintain a reputable sender status.

Key actions involve:

  • Ensure your DKIM signatures are valid and in place.
  • Implement DMARC policies to authenticate your emails.

Assessing Spam Complaints

Monitor your spam complaints diligently. High complaints can harm your sender’s reputation and affect future campaign deliverability.

Respond proactively by:

  • Investigating the cause of complaints to improve your content.
  • Cleaning your email list regularly, removing subscribers who consistently mark your emails as spam.

How You Should Adapt to These Changes, and How ActiveCampaign Helps

Your adaptability is crucial in light of Google and Yahoo’s recent email deliverability standards. ActiveCampaign provides tools and guidance to ensure your email marketing remains effective and compliant.

1. Enable Email Authentication with SPF, DKIM, and DMARC

Email authentication helps verify that an email is from who it claims to be from, combating fraud and improving deliverability.

Email Authentication DKIM DMARC

Sender Policy Framework (SPF) allows servers to verify that the domain’s administrators authorize emails sent from a domain. DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) provides a cryptographic signature that helps verify the sender and that the email hasn’t been tampered with.

Domain-based message authentication, reporting, and conformance (DMARC) ties SPF and DKIM together by establishing a policy for handling emails that fail authentication.

ActiveCampaign supports these authentication methods by guiding you through setting up SPF and DKIM for your emails. By ensuring you have DMARC in place, ActiveCampaign helps maintain your sender reputation and compliance with evolving standards.

2. Start sending emails with your custom domain (not @gmail)

Sending emails from a custom domain enhances your brand identity and trustworthiness. With Google’s new requirements, emails from a generic @gmail.com address may face deliverability issues.

ActiveCampaign facilitates this by allowing you to send emails from your domain easily. This promotes better inbox placement and a professional image, which Google and Yahoo now prioritize.

3. Keep spam complaints below 0.1%

Maintaining a spam complaint rate below 0.1% is essential for a favorable sender reputation. If your emails are frequently marked as spam, this can severely impact your deliverability.

ActiveCampaign provides in-depth analytics to monitor feedback and refine your strategy to minimize spam complaints. It gives you insights into user behaviors and engagement, which can help craft content that resonates with your audience and reduces spam flags.

4. Allow easy one-click unsubscribe and honor unsubscribing requests faster

The user experience should always be a priority, including how easily recipients can opt out of your mailing list. Google and Yahoo now expect a straightforward unsubscribe process.

Through ActiveCampaign, you can implement a one-click unsubscribe feature that meets these new standards and respects user preferences, ultimately contributing to a positive sender reputation.

ActiveCampaign’s Role in Email Deliverability

ActiveCampaign email deliverability

ActiveCampaign provides essential tools and support to navigate the complexities of email deliverability standards, ensuring your communication reaches its intended audience effectively.

Enhancing Sender Reputation

Building a solid sender reputation is critical for service providers to trust your emails.

ActiveCampaign assists you by automating the list hygiene process and removing inactive subscribers to maintain a dynamic and engaged audience. This directly influences your reputation, as an engaged audience is more likely to interact with your content, signaling email providers that your communications are valuable.

Supporting Email Authentication Protocols

Email authentication is a cornerstone of deliverability.

ActiveCampaign simplifies the implementation of key protocols such as DKIM, DMARC, and SPF. This helps prevent spoofing and phishing and enhances the security and deliverability of emails.

Improving Customer Engagement

To avoid the pitfalls of low open rates, which reflect poor customer engagement, ActiveCampaign enables you to segment your email lists based on user interactions.

Delivering targeted and personalized content can increase engagement rates, increasing the likelihood of your emails reaching the inbox.

Effortless Double Opt-In

Initiating a double opt-in procedure strengthens the bond with your subscribers and ensures a more vested interest in your emails.

ActiveCampaign facilitates an easy setup for double opt-in, reinforcing engagement and aligning with best practices for maintaining a healthy sender reputation.

List Cleanup Automation

ActiveCampaign’s automation capabilities extend to the regular maintenance of your email lists.

It conveniently purges inactive contacts, ensuring emails are sent only to genuinely interested ones. This ongoing list cleanup is integral to preserving a high-quality mailing list and establishing a positive sender reputation.

Real-Time Campaign Monitoring

Monitoring the real-time performance of your email campaigns allows for immediate adjustments and improvements.

ActiveCampaign provides insights through active tracking of clicks, opens, and bounces. This vigilance lets you identify what resonates with your audience, helping you continuously optimize your campaigns for better deliverability.

Other Tools and Technologies for Deliverability

Leveraging various tools and technologies that complement ActiveCampaign’s email deliverability efforts is essential to improve your email deliverability. These can help ensure your emails reach your subscribers’ inboxes effectively.

Email Validation and List Cleaning Services

Email validation tools are crucial in verifying the accuracy and quality of your email addresses. They reduce bounce rates by eliminating invalid or risky email addresses from your lists.

List cleaning services provide an additional layer of hygiene, keeping your lists free from inactive or unengaged contacts.

Stay on top of email deliverability by using services like:

  • BriteVerify
  • NeverBounce

The best part is that these services often integrate with ActiveCampaign to streamline your email marketing process.

Analytical Tools and Reporting

Understanding your email performance is fundamental to deliverability.

Analytical tools and reporting mechanisms give you insights into your emails’ performance. Google Postmaster Tools can be especially useful by providing data on spam complaints and delivery errors.

Meanwhile, Postmark’s analytical features give you a detailed view of your email performance with their real-time data on delivery statuses.

Using these analytical resources, you can adjust your strategies for better inbox placement based on solid data.

Choosing the Right Email Marketing Platform

From my experience, choosing an email marketing platform directly impacts your deliverability. You should choose platforms with robust deliverability features and templates optimized for high deliverability.

ActiveCampaign is a platform renowned for its deliverability support, including features like Automated Market Selection (AMS) to help you target the right audience.

When selecting a platform, ensure it offers:

  • Integrated email validation
  • Comprehensive delivery analytics
  • Customizable templates for various campaign needs

Remember, these tools and technologies should be used in synergy with the best practices for email marketing to maximize your deliverability rates.

My Final Thoughts

As you navigate the complexities of Google and Yahoo’s email deliverability updates, it is imperative to understand the new requirements and how they can impact your email marketing efforts.

With the latest authentication requisites and spam prevention measures coming into effect, staying compliant is more critical than ever.

ActiveCampaign is well-equipped to assist in aligning with these standards. Your marketing strategies require adaptability, and here’s how ActiveCampaign helps:

  • Authentication: Ensuring that your emails are authenticated using DKIM and SPF protocols.
  • Spam Rates: Keep your spam complaint rates below the thresholds of Google’s Postmaster Tools—0.10% and 0.30%.

Your email deliverability is now tied closely to these regulations, and ActiveCampaign’s tools are instrumental in maintaining a favorable sender reputation.

Your understanding of the changes and proactive management through robust email services like ActiveCampaign will be the key to successful email campaigns in 2024.

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