Why Should Your Small Business Worry About Email Deliverability?

Avatar for Kat Garcia Kat Garcia
Avatar for Kat Garcia Kat Garcia

November 23, 2022

7 min read

Why Should Your Small Business Worry About Email Deliverability?

No matter if you are big or small, your company should be prioritizing email deliverability when it comes to your email marketing campaigns. Email deliverability is the rate at which your emails get delivered to an actual inbox - not the spam folder.

Email delivery rate is the rate at which your emails get delivered to a recipient- it does not specify if your emails were delivered into the inbox or spam folder.

  • Email Deliverability: the rate your emails arrive in the inbox
  • Email Delivery Rate: the rate your emails are delivered to a recipient, it does not specify whether the email was delivered to an inbox or spam folder

Did you know that 20% of marketing emails never make it to the subscriber’s inbox? That is more than 1 in 5 emails.

For example, deliverability rates have a direct correlation with open rates. When you have higher open rates the better your chances are for conversion.

A recent study from Super Offices states that North America has a 79% deliverability rate. Second to Europe, the US has the largest deliverability rate, so imagine the inbox saturation when it comes to getting your emails delivered. After getting past the first obstacle of having good deliverability, then you must compete for the open rates amongst those who have also made it to the inbox.

Why should your small business pay attention to email deliverability?

You should be concerned about whether or not your emails are being delivered to an inbox. When an email is delivered to an inbox it increases the chances of having more conversions. People are only able to engage with the emails that they actually receive. I don’t know about you but I have never met anyone who has gone through their spam folder just to see if they have any emails from products or services they buy from.

For small businesses, you should not be sleeping on deliverability because you are missing a large chunk of customer conversions.

Here are some examples of how email deliverability can affect your business:

Help Overall ROI

When you are spending time, effort, and money creating an engaging email message just to land in the users spam folder, what is the point? The only way successful email campaigns can be successful is if they are actually opened. When you pay attention to deliverability to ensure that every email you send is landing in an inbox, you’re helping your marketing strategy.

Email deliverability can take a small business to a thriving operation because of its reach. It can help improve customer base, brand awareness, and helps business marketers manage their email programs so that their open rates and campaigns are well optimized.

Improves Customer Experience

Business owners, no matter the size, are in stark competition to win inbox placement. To make your email marketing strategy successful you need to be considering your customers viewpoint.

You should be creating compelling content that drives engagement by using eye catching images, graphics, and including relevant and valuable information to all your users. This helps build your reputation as a brand because customers will know they receive some sort of value from receiving your emails.

Keep in mind users preferences. Communication is a two way street. Sending emails to a non-permission based list will probably not get you what you are looking for. The chances of a user that hasn’t opted in will most likely open your email. This will also result in more unsubscribe rates and high spam complaints. But if you notice a inactive subscribers you can find creative ways to re-engage them with your emails or give them the option to opt-out from your list.

What Affects Email Deliverability

When it comes to email deliverability, there are several factors that can affect your campaigns and their likelihood of being successfully delivered. Emails must pass through a series of checkpoints in order to be deemed “ok” to be delivered. To ensure success there are obstacles that should be considered before you press “send” on that email campaign.

When crafting your email marketing strategy you should be proactive. Here are a few ways to get started and help yourself, in the long run, to remove any spam traps and have a more successful email marketing campaign.

Email Volume

Mailbox filters run on algorithms that monitor the trends of an IP address based on their volume and how they have been sent in the past. If you’re just getting started having an email warm-up strategy helps you seem like a reputable account by gradually increasing your email send limit. A quick spike in email volume could be risky for your company because it will come across as a red flag and have more emails land in the spam folder. A wrap-up time period helps avoid the spam box.

How Frequently Do You Send Emails

Your email reputation is hard to build and really easy to lose. Once you start sending regular emails, keep in mind how often you’re sending them. Overwhelming amounts of emails will lead you straight to the junk folder or result in unsubscribes for excessive messages. You want to try and email your subscribers only when it is necessary and you have value to provide.

If you do want to increase your frequency, give your subscribers a heads-up. Allow them to tailor their experience by asking how often they would like to hear from you. Have an opt-in option. Subscribers will then anticipate and welcome your email communication once they understand the frequency and value you provide.

Your Content and Format

The email itself and its contents are also a big factor when it comes to deliverability. The impact is not as severe as your sender reputation’s score, it is still considered when it comes to deliverability. ISPs have built-in filters to identify spam and move it from the inbox. When you use “spammy” words and sales-y undertones it doesn’t contribute to your deliverability, rather it hinders it.

Here’s what not to do:

  • Use words such as: Click Here! Or Buy Now!
  • Have multiple special characters in the subject line like excessive exclamation marks
  • Using all caps is a red flag for ISPs, and seems a bit aggressive
  • Sending links that are like they are phishing

How To Improve Deliverability

Let’s go over the top ways to improve your deliverability and how to take your email marketing strategy to the next level.

Establish a good sender reputation score

A sender reputation score is score given to your IP addressed based on how reputable you are. Factors such as spam complaints, blacklist listings, and email bounces are all taken into account when receiving a score from the email service providers (ESPs). Based on this score, it will then determine whether or not your emails will get delivered to an inbox.

You want to have a strong sender reputation score. In order to have the best chances at good deliverability your sender reputation score is a huge factor. Based on these numbers it will determine whether or not your hard work gets delivered.

Clean Your Lists

It is crucial to maintain a healthy email list. You may have hundreds or thousands of emails that you have collected over the years but a list can decay up to 4% annually. Meaning, you would be sending to non existent email addresses that can bounce or even worse - get marked as spam.

Email verification tools such as Emailable do the work for you. They clean up your lists and allow you to export only valid email addresses. They go through each email to check for various factors that could potentially affect your business such as syntax errors, spam traps, or non existent email addresses. When you are only sending to valid email addresses this also helps you improve your sender reputation score.

Pay Attention to Your Metrics

To help get you to a better deliverability rate, you should be tracking your metrics. This not only helps you understand your campaigns better but it also helps you create better email marketing strategies in the future based on your customers feedback.

Here are some key elements you should take into consideration:

  • Your subscribers are marking “Not Spam”, or adding your emails to a ‘safe senders’ list. This helps tell email service providers that you’re, in fact, not spam as well as ISP’s that are responsible for blacklists will note this in their system.
  • Your forward rate. This is a great metric to look out for as it tells you how your content is being distributed from subscribers to their peers. ESPs also notice this and are more likely to deliver your email communications.
  • Your reply rate is also a great metric to see how your emails are doing. Try to send from an email account that allows your recipients to reply to emails. This helps drive your engagement and it’s encouraging them to reach out to you if they have any questions.

You Should Worry About Email Deliverability

Email deliverability is not an element of your email marketing strategy that should be left on the back burner. It is a key element to having a successful marking campaign. It can help with your overall ROI, improve customer experience and engagement.

Factors such as email volume, how frequently you’re sending your emails, and what your content contains are all variables that can affect your email delivierability. You should be sending emails that will provide only relevant and valuable information to your customers, always allow an opt-out or update preferences option, and never use “spammy words”. These can all be red flags for getting listed as spam or even worse, blacklisted.

You can improve your deliverability by having a solid sender reputation score, maintaining a clean and healthy list and paying attention to your metrics. You’re able to do everything possible to help your deliverability which will ultimately help you have a successful and lucrative email marketing campaign.

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