Keeping your list clean isn’t just for the super-organized and Marie Kondo-ers out there.

dirty email list can actually reduce your deliverability and impact the results you get from your email marketing. 

If you want the best results – you’ve got to keep your list squeaky clean! 

Email Deliverability: How A Dirty List Affects Your Results - And What To Do About It

What Is Email Deliverability?

Email deliverability is the ability of your email to land in the inbox of the person you’re sending it to. Just because you send it, doesn’t mean they receive it. 

If your email deliverability is poor, then the people on your list might not be getting your emails – and no matter how good your copywriting is – you can’t sell if never make it into their inbox! 

There are several ways that low deliverability can play out….your email may never arrive or it may be filtered into the “promotions” folder – or worse – sent to spam! 

So What Can You Do To Boost Your Deliverability? 

Housekeeping. Keep your list clean. 

There are several things that affect deliverability: low open rates, low engagement, using certain “blacklisted” words or sending from a server that’s got a reputation for spammy emails. 

When you keep your list clean – ensuring the people on it are interested and engaged in what you have to say – then you increase your chances of getting into inboxes and avoiding the spam folder of doom. 

How do you keep your list spick and span? 

Delete people. 

Sounds harsh right? But the chances are that if they’re not opening or engaging with your emails then they’re not interested in what you have to say. 

You’ll lose nothing by removing them from your list. They’re not your customer anyway.

Email Deliverability: How A Dirty List Affects Your Results - And What To Do About It

So Who Should You Remove From Your List?

Hard Bounces – A hard bounce is an email address that doesn’t work. The server tried to send the email and it got bounced right back. 

Duplicates – Duplicate contacts don’t help you – they only harm your open rates. Seriously, who opens the same email in two different accounts? 

People Who Have Unsubscribed – There is literally nothing to be gained by keeping people on your list that have unsubscribed. They don’t want to hear from you. And – it’s also illegal – so let them go on their merry way…

People Who Haven’t Opened For A Long Time – If a contact hasn’t even opened your email in 6-12 months then they’re not much use to you. They’re just pushing down your open rates and reducing your deliverability. Cut the dead weight.

But Before You Let Them Go…

Hard bounces, duplicates and unsubscribes should be removed from your list immediately. But those who haven’t engaged are worth one last chance…

Segment them from your main list and send them one last email asking them if they want to stay or go. Just stick a couple of links in there for them to click saying “Yes! Keep sending me useful emails…” or “No thanks. I don’t want to hear from you again…” 

Email Deliverability: How A Dirty List Affects Your Results - And What To Do About It

You can set up an action in your email marketing software to remove those that click the unsubscribe link automatically. 

Don’t include your ACTUAL unsubscribe link in the text – this will tell your software that people are not loving what you do and possibly harm your deliverability. 

Create your own link and automation to do it yourself so it looks like YOU unsubscribed them – not the other way around. 

And if they don’t reply at all, remove them from the list. 

I’ll write more about list cleaning in future – there’s some other cool things you can do to improve your deliverability, push up your open rates and engage your readers. But this will get you started. 

 

 

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