Marketing Automation Buyer's Guide

How Email Deliverability Can Improve Your Company’s Credibility in the Eyes of Its Consumers

Email Deliverability Can Improve Your Company's Credibility


As part of Solutions Review’s Contributed Content Seriesa collection of contributed articles written by our enterprise tech thought leader community—Guy Hanson, Vice President of Partners at Validity, explains why email deliverability is essential in earning and keeping customer trust in your company.

With the digital landscape evolving, data privacy is becoming more critical than ever. For example, over 500 million phishing attacks were reported in 2022, more than double the number of attacks reported the previous year. This is causing many consumers to become wary of cyber-crimes and ultimately making it harder for companies to gain consumer trust. Additionally, in 2024, both Google and Yahoo are cracking down on their sender requirements to adopt more stringent performance standards.

Email marketing can be a powerful way to communicate with consumers. Still, with billions of emails sent daily and scams and security risks rising, it’s critical to strengthen your email deliverability and show consumers your company can be trusted.

What is Email Deliverability? 

Email deliverability is a sender’s ability to deliver their emails to inboxes versus spam folders. Many senders rely on the “delivered” rate shown in dashboards provided by email service providers (ESPs)  to assess their deliverability. But it’s important to note that emails can be delivered to a few places besides the inbox. 

In fact, according to a 2023 Email Deliverability Benchmark Report, 1 in 6 emails doesn’t reach the inbox. The delivery rate that many senders rely on only shows the number of emails the mailbox provider accepted, not whether the emails landed in inboxes (rather than spam folders). This metric also doesn’t provide insights into how the email was processed after acceptance. This is why email marketers should challenge themselves to instead view deliverability through the metrics of inbox placement rate, spam placement rate, and missing rate. 

So, why should you and your company care about email deliverability? No matter how catchy your subject line is or how beautiful your designed campaign assets may be, if your messages land in spam folders, chances are, subscribers won’t see them at all. This ultimately costs your company revenue, so prioritizing good deliverability seriously impacts your bottom line.

The Key to Keeping Your Email Deliverability Strong

There are many factors that play into strengthening email deliverability. Here are some tips to consider that hold true across industries:

1) Track your inbox placement

Monitoring your inbox placement rate grants you visibility into whether your messages are getting blocked or diverted to spam/junk folders by mailbox providers and provides insights into the overall health of your program.

2) Authenticate your email program

Not only is authentication a critical piece of protecting your email program from phishers and spammers, but it’s now a mandatory requirement with Google and Yahoo’s new policies. It helps legitimize your email program to mailbox providers and boosts the security of your domains (and your deliverability). Ensure the three primary email authentication protocols are in place: SPF, DKIM, and DMARC

3) Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC)

When talking about how to gain credibility with consumers, it’s particularly important to call out the DMARC protocol. This allows senders to specify a policy for non-authenticated messages (e.g., quarantine, reject) and provides them with a reporting mechanism. Suppose mailbox providers identify email activity claiming to be from that sender but failing DMARC’s checks. In that case, they are then authorized to quarantine or delete these emails, providing subscribers with a far more secure experience. DMARC also means senders can actively monitor and proactively deal with potential threats to their businesses.

4) Boost your brand’s trustworthiness with BIMI

Brand Indicators for Message Identification show subscribers your emails come from a verified, trustworthy sender by letting senders display their approved logos next to their emails in inboxes. When DMA research asked consumers what persuades them to open marketing emails, their biggest answer was, “I recognize/trust the sender.” This year, that effectiveness has increased further with the blue check marks that Yahoo and Gmail have introduced. When a sender has verified that they own the email contents, it is a clear sign of trustworthiness. As consumer privacy concerns reach all-time highs, this protocol could provide the validation subscribers need to engage with your campaigns. 

5) Keep your email list clean

Consistently run your lists through contact verification solutions to ensure you send your emails to real, active addresses. This will help you reach inboxes and keep your sender reputation high. 

6) Monitor your reputation

Regularly check your sender’s reputation to ensure mailbox providers will favorably evaluate your messages. This is often the primary factor mailbox providers use to determine whether your messages will be sent to the inbox, the spam folder, or blocked altogether.

7) Keep your spam complaint rates below prescribed thresholds

Spam complaints are the number one thing that will hurt your reputation. Best practice senders should aim for 1 complaint for every 1,000 messages (0.1 percent) and should absolutely exceed the 0.3 percent threshold established by Gmail and Yahoo’s new standards. To keep your spam complaints low, use active opt-in to permission new subscribers and keep your lists clean by proactively suppressing disengaged subscribers. Also, consider deploying personalized content to your emails to keep senders engaged. 

8) Make it easy to unsubscribe

All senders should include a clear, straightforward, and easy-to-use unsubscribe mechanism in their emails, and Gmail and Yahoo are now making this a mandatory requirement. Making it difficult for subscribers to unsubscribe from your email means they are more likely to mark your emails as spam, impacting reputation and deliverability.

9) Check to see if you’ve been blocklisted

If you are blocklisted, you will want to consult that specific blocklist’s delisting requirements and follow their stated procedures. This is an essential step to stay in good standing with mailbox providers. 

How Can Email Deliverability Impact a Consumer’s View of a Brand? 

Interacting with your consumers impacts their sentiment toward your brand and can encourage their loyalty. Eighty percent of customers believe experiences provided by a company are as meaningful as the products and services they offer. 

Email marketers can utilize campaigns to play a role in brand reputation; however, to successfully reach a consumer’s inbox and gain their trust and loyalty, a sender must have strong email deliverability and good standing with the major mailbox providers. Ultimately, if you aren’t consistently landing in your subscribers’ inboxes, you risk your consumers forgetting about your brand and potentially turning to your competitors instead. 

Maintaining strong email deliverability will help your business in the long run. It can create trust and loyalty with your subscribers by demonstrating that your company has a credible reputation.

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