As we approach February 2024, many entrepreneurs who rely on email marketing (as most should), will get a rude wake-up-call when they see their deliverability rates plummet.
In February, changes in email deliverability rules are set to significantly impact how your emails reach your customers. Understanding these changes is key to ensuring your messages don't end up in the dreaded spam folder.
There are three main rules you need to keep top of mind. Or better yet, on your CRM dashboard, so you can manage them carefully, like the here to the right:
Let's break down these new rules into simple, actionable insights.
What It Means: Email engagement refers to how recipients interact with your emails – are they opening them, clicking on links, or simply ignoring them? Under the new rules, the average engagement period for your emails should be 100 days or less. This means your recipients should be actively interacting with your emails within this timeframe.
Why It Matters: Email service providers (ESPs) like Gmail or Outlook use engagement as a signal to determine if your emails are valuable to recipients. If your emails are frequently ignored, they might start directing them to the spam folder.
What It Means: A 'bounce' occurs when an email can't be delivered to a recipient's inbox. The new rules state that your email bounce rate – the percentage of emails that bounce back – should be no more than 5%.
Why It Matters: A high bounce rate is often a red flag for email providers, indicating that your email list might contain many invalid or outdated addresses.
What It Means: This rule refers to the rate of recipients marking your emails as spam. Keeping this rate at 0.1% or lower is crucial.
Why It Matters: High complaint rates signal to email providers that your content might be unwelcome or irrelevant, increasing the chances of your emails being marked as spam.
Set up DMARC for your domain. It's a technology protocol that confirms your domain as valid by the ESP receiving your email, and also helps keep criminals from spoofing your domain and sending messages on your behalf without your knowledge.
It's a little complex to do this, and I suggest using a DMARC management service, which you can get for about $100 per month. I personally use MXToolbox. I've had great service with them, but there are many to choose from.
Adapting to these new email deliverability rules is not just about avoiding the spam folder; it's about building a trustworthy and engaging relationship with your audience.
By focusing on these key performance indicators – engagement, bounce rates, and complaint rates – you can enhance your email marketing strategy, ensuring your messages resonate with your audience while complying with the latest standards.
Remember, successful email marketing is a blend of art and science – it's about delivering value to your customers in a way that's both engaging and respectful.
School of Hard Knocks