Improve your domain reputation

1. Check your domain reputation with a sender score tool like Google Postmaster Tools, Talos Intelligence, or Sender Score.

Aim for as high of a score as possible, with 100 being a perfect sender score. 70-80 is fairly good, 80-100 is an ideal goal to aim for.

2. Verify your domain name is registered with an appropriate content category and that emails are sent from registered subdomains.

Check the content category of your domain registration with a tool like BarracudaCentral. You can also use this tool to see whether your domain has been blacklisted by any organizations. Register subdomains to help categorize emails your business will send out to subscribers. For example, you might have multiple subdomains to cover customer service, automated system or transaction messages, and more.

3. Check the authentication settings in your email service provider account to verify your DKIM and SPF records.

If you still need to verify these protocols, check with your email service provider for specific instructions on how to do so. For added security, it’s recommended to update or rotate DKIM keys about once every 12 months.

4. Remove suspicious, misspelled, consistently inactive, or hard bounce email addresses from your email lists.

Expedite the tedious process of cleaning out and verifying your email subscriber lists with a tool like Email List Verify, ZeroBounce, or MailGet List Cleaning.

5. Set up required email opt-in and create an email opt-in form with copy that sets honest expectations for your email content and frequency.

Keep the email opt-in form as simple and concise as possible to increase the number of leads who will complete filling out the form. Setting clear expectations for subscribers when they opt in will help reduce your unsubscribe rate from users who feel they aren’t receiving the type of content or amount of emails that they signed up for.

6. Make it easy for users to unsubscribe by adding an unsubscribe link in all emails, and honor all unsubscribe requests promptly.

Most email service providers will include an unsubscribe feature automatically, but you can verify and customize the copy that will appear for the unsubscribe message at the bottom of each email. To help lower your unsubscribe rate, set up a preference center for recipients to choose their preferred frequency and categories of emails they receive from you, if your email service provider has the capability.

7. Write concise, engaging, and accurate subject lines without spam trigger words.

Familiarize your team with spam-trigger words that should be avoided in subject line copy. Some common words and phrases to avoid include: Act now. Buy now. Call now. Limited time offer. Offer expires. This won’t last. Visit our website.

8. Create high-quality, engaging emails that include a headline, body, content that matches the subject line and domain category, and relevant information for that specific audience.

Keep your email lists organized and tailor your email copy for each group’s interests to deliver the type of content and offers they want to continue receiving.

9. Create and stick to a consistent email frequency for each segmented email list.

If you are working with a newly registered domain, repairing a damaged domain reputation, or with a new IP address, warm up your domain to avoid triggering spam filters. Begin by sending out emails to no more than 1000, but no fewer than 100, active subscribers per day. You can slowly and gradually increase your send volume every 3-4 days.

10. Include your physical mailing address, a link to your privacy policy, and an accurate sender and company name in all emails.