Six Ways to Keep Your Newsletter Out of the SPAM Box

It’s a newsletter publishers nightmare-being accused of sending spam and then confined from reaching their subscribers.

One of the most difficult things to deal with is being accused of spamming. It can cause all sorts of frustrations.

If you use a newsletter script hosted on your own website it can consequence in your IP being blacklisted and then you’ll have trouble getting your regular business email delivered (not just your newsletter).

If you use a third party hosting service, your domain email won’t get blacklisted, but your newsletters won’t reach your subscribers.

You don’t want either of these things to happen!

How can you avoid it? Some people will click the “Spam” reporting button instead of unsubscribing, no matter how easy you make it, and then you’ll need to deal with getting de-listed, but there are some ways to protect yourself from being accused of spamming.

1) Don’t Send Spam

This sounds obvious, I know, but many small businesses don’t realize exactly what spam is. Spam isn’t just the ads you get for stocks, medicines, or winning international lotteries. It’s any unsolicited commercial email. Unsolicited method you sent it to someone who didn’t specifically request it.

What does this average for you? Don’t take your complete contact list of emails and add them to your newsletter! Do not add anyone who has not requested specifically to receive sales related emails from you. If at all possible, you need an IP address and timestamp proving they requested it (third party newsletter hosts will track and keep this information for you).

In addition, you MUST comply with the CAN-SPAM act by providing an unsubscribe link in every newsletter you send, in addition as your complete postal mailing address. If someone requests removal you need to remove them promptly and be sure they stay removed from your list.

2) Double Opt-In Only

Always require double opt-in. This method after the person gives you their email address, a verification email is sent that they must respond to (usually by clicking a link or replying to the message) in order to be additional to your list. This ensures that the email address is correct and current. It also method you’ve got two methods to prove to a service provider who thinks you’re spamming that the email address did want to receive your newsletter.

3) Ask Your Subscribers to Whitelist You

the time of action varies depending on what email service your subscribers are using, but include a observe at the top of your newsletters asking your subscribers to please whitelist your email address or add you to their friends list. If they take this step you’re much more likely to end up in their inbox instead of their junk mail folder. You could use something like, “So we can be sure you continue receiving great tips from us to help you run your business each week, please take a few seconds to add yournewsletteraddress @ yourdomain.com to your whitelist or friends list. Thank you!”

4) Include a Permission Reminder and observe About Unsubscriptions

Sometimes people forget that they’ve subscribed to a newsletter (be sure you send out regularly so your subscribers don’t forget you!). To help jog their memory, you can include a permission reminder somewhere near the top of your newsletter. “This newsletter is only sent with permission to those who’ve requested it at our website yoursite.com but if you’d like to change your address or unsubscribe just scroll to the bottom of this email and click the link.” If it’s easy to see where/how to unsubscribe, people will be more likely to use that characterize instead of reporting you as a spammer.

5) Run Your Newsletter by a Spam Checker Before Sending

Once you’ve completed writing your newsletter, take time to run it by a reliable spam checker. Some sets (like GetResponse and Aweber) have this characterize built-in. If your sending service doesn’t, here are two good free ones:

spamcheck.sitesell.com – This site will give you a “Spam Score” and recommendations on how to reduce it.

programmersheaven.com/webtools/Spam-Checker/spamchecker.aspx – This tool checks based on SpamAssassin and SpamBayes rules.

6) Keep Tabs on Your IP and it’s Blacklist position

There are lots of different blacklists out there that your IP address may get additional to if you are accused of spamming. Your IP address is sort of the numerical version of your domain name, except it’s not always rare to you and is probably shared with other sites hosted by your website great number, unless you have an SSL certificate or other reason for your own rare IP. You don’t need to worry about this with a third-party hosted newsletter service because they monitor their IPs, but if you’re hosting your own newsletter, then check your IP position at the following websites:

mxtoolbox.com/blacklists.aspx

mail-abuse.com/lookup.html

rbls.org/index.html

What can you do if you’re confined for spamming and stuck on a black list? If you get placed on a blacklist you’ll need to request removal. It sounds a little intimidating, but it’s really not a scary course of action. When you receive a bounce notice that assumes your newsletter was spam, look closely to find the service provider who bounced you. Start at their website and do a search to see what you can find about their spam list and removal course of action. If you can’t find how to remove yourself from their blacklist, a phone call to their customer service department should help. Your website great number may also be able to guide you by getting your IP de-listed.

These six tips will help you keep your newsletter successfully able to reach the inboxes of the people who’ve subscribed.

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