If you send a significant volume of emails, you've likely heard of email blacklists. Maybe you're wondering how you can avoid your domain or IP getting blacklisted? Well here's some quick tips to help you avoid these nasty lists.


What is a blacklist?

Obviously just by the name alone, these can't be a good thing. It's a list of domain names or IP addresses that have been reported as sending spam emails. These lists are often available to the public for free, and typically used by email providers to filter out incoming email that's sent by these "bad" domains or IPs.

It's been reported that being blacklisted can affect your email deliverability by upwards of 60%. That's a scary number.

Now let's look at some ways you can avoid being blacklisted...

Maintain Email Volume

If all of a sudden you start sending 20 emails per day to your list, it's very likely that you'll end up on one or more blacklists. It's best to maintain a consistent rate of emails.

Avoid Spammy Links

If you do affiliate marketing, make sure you're only promoting legit products or services. Typically spam-magnet emails include Viagra, lotteries, and prescription drugs / pharmacies. If you include links in your emails to these sites, you'll end up blacklisted.

Get Proper Consent

Make sure, when people subscribe to your list, that they know what they're signing up for, what type of emails they're likely to receive, etc. Don't send your "dog training" list an email promoting a new credit card offer ;)

Monitor Your Blacklist Status

The free Winning Email Checkup can check some of the popular blacklist sites to see if your domain or IP is listed.

Keep Your List Clean

The cleaner your list is, the less likely you are to end up blacklisted. What do I mean by "clean"? Basically...containing only legit, human subscribers that actually want to receive your emails.

Here's some things you can do:

  • Use CAPTCHA on your subscription form to prevent bots from signing up
  • Handle bounces appropriately
  • Remove inactive subscribers (that may include spam traps)
  • By setting up feedback loops and unsubscribing any complainants

Hope this helps! Now get out there and start sending some emails!


Kane Miller from Winning.Email

Kane has a background in computer engineering, but now focuses on creating new and interesting web services. His passion for improving his own email deliverability rates was the driving force behind the creation of Winning.Email.