As a membership business owner, you should know that email marketing is an important part of your overall marketing strategy. Yet even after you work tirelessly to gain email subscribers, craft attention-grabbing subject lines, create solid openers, develop conversion-worthy CTAs, and establish a schedule… you might find that your emails go straight to your subscribers’ spam folder.
And we all know, once those emails fall into the spam folder, they’re never coming out!
Why do your emails continue to get stuck in the spam folder? How can you get past this problem? In this post, we’re going to explain a few steps you can take to make sure that your emails land in your subscribers’ inbox, where they belong.
Did you know that you can create automated email reminders for your members in MemberPress? Click here to get started!
Why Do Emails Go To Spam?
Marketing emails can wind up getting flagged as spam for many different reasons, including:
You Didn’t Get Your Subscribers’ Permission
One way your emails can be flagged as spam is if you didn’t get your subscribers’ permission to email them in the first place. If you buy an email list (this is a bad idea and illegal in some areas), if you get emails from business pages, or even if you get emails from business cards you’ve personally gathered, you still need permission to send email messages.
You Didn’t Include Correct Information About Your Business
Legally, you’re required to include a valid address for your business in your emails. If you fail to provide this information, or if the information is deemed inaccurate or invalid, this can make your emails look like spam and cause them to be flagged.
Low Email Engagement
Engagement isn’t just important in social media marketing. Mailbox providers monitor emails that your subscribers receive and interact with. If they notice your subscribers aren’t opening or engaging with your emails, they’ll eventually be marked as spam. Some email carriers will even suggest to users that they unsubscribe from your email list.
Your Email Doesn’t Include A Way to Unsubscribe
Allowing your subscribers the option to unsubscribe from your email list may seem like a bad thing, but it can actually save you a ton of headaches in the long run.
If a subscriber wants to unsubscribe from your email list and they have no link to do so, they’re more likely to not engage with your email, which will lead the mailbox provider to mark the email as spam. If they don’t simply ignore your email, they could mark your email as spam, which puts you in the same predicament.
Your Email Isn’t Formatted Properly
If your email newsletter is not formatted correctly, meaning it isn’t mobile-friendly, is full of images, or is extremely long and drawn out, chances are that your email will be flagged as spam by the mailbox provider.
You Used Trigger Words and Phrases
There are certain words or phrases you might be using in your emails that are triggering spam filters to consider your email spam. Words such as winner, risk-free, congratulations, double your cash, free gift, earn extra cash, and more can trigger a mailbox, making it believe you’re trying to send an email with a scam or unsafe content.
How to Keep Your Emails Out of the Spam Folder
Now that we’ve gone over some of the more common reasons your emails might be getting banished to the spam folder, let’s discuss a few things you can do to ensure that the spam folder will never see your precious emails ever again!
Ask Subscribers to Confirm with a Double Opt-In, and Whitelist Your Emails
Permission is key! When a new subscriber signs up for your email list, be sure to send a follow-up email confirming that they’re okay receiving emails from you. In addition, be sure to remind your subscribers to whitelist emails coming from you. Doing so will ensure their mailbox provider won’t flag your emails as spam. This simple action will keep your delivery and engagement rates up.
Here’s an example of an effective double opt-in message you could send to your subscribers when they sign up:
SUBJECT: Please Confirm Your Subscription
Thanks for signing up. Click the link below to confirm your subscription and you'll be on your way.
To make sure you don't miss any of the action:
1. Follow the whitelisting instructions for your email provider here: (link)
2. Add my email to your contacts list.
Talk to you soon,
Use Spam Checkers
If you’d like to add an extra layer of protection to your emails before you ever send them off, consider using spam checkers. These tools will allow you to copy and paste your email content into their system or send a test email to help you determine whether your email will be likely to trigger spam filters. A few great tools you can use to get started are Litmus or Sender Score.
Use (Or Purchase) Your Own Authenticated Domain
While it’s not completely disastrous to use a Gmail, Outlook, or Yahoo email for your email campaigns, it can cause your emails to go straight to spam.
Email marketing software companies create their programs for businesses who are sending out bulk emails, so when you use a personal account or an email with no domain, it can trigger mailbox programs to assume you are spamming their customers.
So be sure to add a business email to your email marketing software, and authenticate it to prove you’re authorized to send emails from the account.
Regularly Clean Up Your Email List
As your email list grows, there may be instances where you discover that some of your subscribers’ email addresses are invalid. You might also discover you have a few spam email addresses on your list that have been missed by your spam filter or a number of hard bounces.
Cleaning out these emails and making sure that you have a tidy, engaged email list will help keep your emails out of spam, increase your email click-through rates, and improve your email lists’ reputation with your email marketing software company.
Rework Your Subject Lines
One common mistake that businesses make when sending emails is not optimizing their subject lines. Your email subject line is the first thing an email recipient will see when they interact with your content, so you need to make it count!
NEVER mislead your customers with the subject line (nobody likes clickbait), and make your subject line as engaging as possible so your subscribers will be interested in clicking. Here’s a great tool from CoSchedule to help you craft better email subjects.
Use a Custom SMTP Server When Sending Email from WordPress
In WordPress, a mail function in PHP is used to send emails. Many shared hosting providers don’t have this function configured properly, or have it disabled. This situation can negatively impact your business, because your emails are not getting sent.
Using services such as WP Mail SMTP, SendGrid, MailGun, and SendInBlue, you can send emails straight from WordPress without worrying about whether your readers are getting your emails or if the emails are being marked as spam.
Discovering that your email has been thrown in the spam folder is never fun, so we hope that the tips we’ve provided above will help you better understand how to keep your emails out of the spam folder and in front of your customers!
Are you ready to dive in and convert your email subscribers to membership site customers? Create a membership site with MemberPress!
If you’re looking for more email marketing inspiration, be sure to check out our posts on the best email marketing software to use, why and how to segment your email lists, and how to run a successful email campaign!