How to stop your marketing emails going into spam


April 29, 2019

Spam filters are cracking down hard on marketing emails. To help you make sure your customers receive your communications, we’ve put together a list of things you should do to prevent your email being incorrectly marked as spam…


First, you must make sure you have explicit permission to email the people in your lists. This means specific permission to send them the type of content you want to share. In other words, your readers must be expecting the type of content you’re serving them. Getting a list of email addresses of customers who didn’t agree to receiving marketing material, and then sending them marketing emails isn’t allowed under GDPR legislation. But as marketeers we already know that the best type of people to send our content to are those who we know want to read it.

The best type of people to send our content to are those who we know want to read it.

Unsubscribe links help

Be sure to have an unsubscribe link in your emails, to let readers decide to opt-out of further communications. Not having an opt-out may put your emails on the wrong side of the filter. Review your list regularly, and make sure to remove email addresses that aren’t viewing your emails, have unsubscribed or keep bouncing.

Choose your words carefully

Make sure your content, and title, are clean from words and patterns that spam filters may misinterpret as actual spam. Your title should be relevant to the content, never misleading, and preferably be free of symbols and all-caps. Certain words in your content or title may get your email caught in filters, such as ‘FREE’ and ‘WIN’. Keep your content valuable to your readers, and never send an email with the exact same content twice.

Avoid using words such as ‘FREE’ or ‘WIN’

Consider the design

Emails built in HTML look lovely but it’s important to understand that marketing emails are more likely to pass the filters when built with best development practices in mind. The physical size of the email is important, keep it to 600 pixels wide or less, so it displays correctly. HTML code should be as clean as possible, something that most ‘email generators’ won’t do properly. The email should be text-heavy, with a high text-to-image ratio, and any images used should be optimised down to a small file size.

Consistent contact information

Other, lesser known mistakes can also lower the chances of your marketing emails being received by your readers. The ‘from’ name and email address should be correct and consistent. If possible, always keep your ‘from’ name and email address similar, and something your readers will immediately recognise. For example, if a customer receives an email from CampaignWORKS , they would expect it to be linked with an email address similar to

Make sure your name and email address is recognisable to your customer (don’t try anything clever!)

Still not getting through?

Sometimes, you can do everything right with your marketing email, but they’re still not getting into your readers’ inboxes. In this case, the problem might be with your server. If the IP address of your server has been placed on spam ‘blacklists’, then anything you send from that server could be caught in spam filters. In these situations, you may have to start sending from another IP address, or use a service, such as CampaignMonitor. An extra tip to keep yourself off the ‘blacklist’ – instruct your readers to send ‘whitelist’ signals by adding your address to their contact book, the email to their favourites, or equivalent.

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