I seem to spend an inordinate amount of time wading through my email junk folder looking for legitimate emails that wind up in there, often from readers. I hate the thought of missing something good from you or something else of importance, so I do spend the time searching as carefully as I can through that folder. I’m sure I still miss some.
It stands to reason that most email addresses that are not whitelisted or added to your address book already will go directly to the junk folder, although not all of them do. I’ve long given up trying to figure out exactly what triggers the filters to kick in and mark some emails as spam and others not.
Seems like it has a nasty habit of marking the legitimate ones as junk, and the ones that seem obvious to me to be spam, as not junk. Go figure.
There are, however, a couple of scenarios that I know of that will most likely trigger the filters and there are steps you can take as an email marketer to limit your emails winding up in the junk folder of your recipients.
Even though you and I check our junk folders regularly (you do don’t you?), not everybody does. So who knows how many of your legitimate marketing emails are getting lost?
First, use double opt-in for building your list. This is your best safe-guard against the filters, but even so, other things will trip them.
Second, use the Spam Checker option that’s built right in to most every third-party email delivery service (like Aweber, iContact, and Constant Contact) to check for trigger words and phrases that might get you in the junk folder.
It is especially important to avoid using trigger words in your subject lines, but if you also put them in the body of your email, that’ll likely get you filtered, as well.
Here are some links to sites that will give you a heads-up about trigger words:
Do you ever wonder why it looks like some folks just can’t spell? What they’re doing is trying to circumvent the filters. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. Do too much of that sort of thing and the filters will get you eventually, anyway. I’m talking about using words like “muney” instead of “money” or extra punctuation like this: f.r..e.e.
In addition, what I see happening more and more these days is quite easily remedied. When people sign up for your list, you tell them what email they should whitelist or add to their address books so they don’t miss your emails. That’s the email you should always use to send from.
But what I am seeing more and more is that people are sending me emails from all different sorts of email addresses and url’s. When you signed up for this ezine you were told to whitelist the address: email@example.com.
We get into trouble when we start using variations on our email addresses such as firstname.lastname@example.org, or email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Each of these variations will likely put your email into the junk folder, let alone confuse the heck out of your subscribers. So stop doing that. Stick with one “from” email address even if you have a variety of different business interests going on. By sticking with email@example.com for everything I send you, you’re more likely to get it regardless of the topic I’m promoting at any one time.
It’s funny, the CAN-SPAM Act was put into place to help consumers cut back on the amount of spam emails they receive, but as it turns out, the only people that Act has seemed to hurt are legitimate email marketers like you and me, making it difficult to get our emails delivered to the inbox every time.
Take some precautions to check every email you send for troublesome trigger words, use double opt-in for sign-ups, and use the same “from” email address every time and your emails should get into your recipients email inbox every time.© Copyright 2010 Marty Marsh