Email hygiene can make or break your email marketing campaigns. It might sound dramatic, but it’s true: one of the worst things that can happen to your carefully crafted emails is that they get marked as spam. Keeping your lists clean and up to date with active email addresses and engaged readers lowers the risk of entering the dreaded spam folder (and decreases your bounce rate too). Let’s take a look at what exactly email hygiene is, how to achieve it and how it can impact your business.
What is email hygiene?
First of all, let’s get to the bottom of this. Email hygiene is concerned with data quality – basically the cleanliness and correctness of your email lists. Every single email you have in your database should have opted in and, ideally, be actively reading your content.
The best way to achieve email hygiene is to clean out cold, inactive or error-filled emails from your database. Email service providers are more savvy than ever when it comes to what recipients want to see in their inbox. They will take a close look at opens, clicks, inactivity and unsubscribes, as well as the content of the email, to determine whether or not it should be delivered. So you should be monitoring customer behaviour too.
How does it impact engagement?
Engagement is interaction with your email – from the moment it’s opened to the click-throughs it encourages and whether or not it’s kept. If your email hygiene is poor, your sender reputation will come under fire and communication with your customers will take a nosedive. If emails are delivering but potential readers aren’t engaging, you’re back to square one.
How can I achieve email hygiene?
There are three major mistakes to avoid when it comes to email hygiene:
Purchasing email lists
Any email marketing campaign manager will feel the pressure of growing your business’ email list. Don’t fall into the trap, though, of purchasing reams of emails from a third party. They tend to be riddled with misspelled or false email addresses and those that haven’t opted in.
Letting your email list get out of date
You’re likely to lose 2% of live email addresses every month, so it’s important to keep your database up to date by removing legacy contacts. You can run your database through an email verification solution like emailchecker.com to identify and get rid of dead addresses so that they won’t impact on sender reputation and the performance of your email campaign.
One email fits all for your subscribers
As customers are becoming ever more switched on to the quality content they deserve as subscribers, it’s not enough to send a one-size-fits-all email to everyone. Personalise communication according to user data, sign-up date, engagement level or their interest in your product or service.
Why is it so important?
The number one reason to invest in email hygiene is deliverability, closely followed by engagement. You will only see results from your campaign if the emails actually arrive at their intended destination. Not to mention, it is so much easier to engage and drive conversions with customers who actively want to be on your mailing list. Implement email validation at your point of subscription, or take advantage of handy services such as Email Checker, which offers verification solutions to tidy up your list, along with real-time email validation API that can keep it clean from the outset – a surefire way to greater and more consistent returns.