Best practice for formatting and sending business (not email marketing) emails.

Something that comes up fairly often is the issue of false positives (FP's) for business email. This is where an organisations own spam filters block email on the way out, OR, the recipients spam filter blocks the email on the way in. Best practice for business (not email marketing) emails is fairly easy to define. For example, the following will get you started.

- Use a sensible subject line and properly address the body content
- Don't write the message in the subject line, this isn't instant messaging!
- Always use plain text, or avoid lots of formatting
- Avoid linking to remote images 
- Avoid links within the body
- Use one size, colour and type of font 
- Don't use 'spammy' text like 'click here' in large red font or ALL CAPS TEXT :) 
- Avoid copy and paste from MS Word it could bring across weird formatting which is often seen in spam  
- Avoid links in signatures
- Keep email signatures simple (although it could be argued that a good comprehensive signature should get HAM points)

To avoid recipient side filters ask your IT people to:
- Setup delivery technologies like SPF records on your domain name
- Ensure your organisations public facing IP address is not blacklisted 
- Optionally setup outbound email routing via a trusted sender (Sendgrid for example)

When email marketing...
- Don't send sales and marketing email via your business email account, use an email marketing platform like Campaign Monitor or Mailchimp. That'll keep your sending servers IP address 'clean'.
- Don’t use purchased, rented, or scraped lists!

There are a tonne of good online resopurces about this and outbound email marketing, here are two to get you started.

http://mailchimp.com/resources/guides/how-to-avoid-spam-filters/html/
https://sendgrid.com/blog/10-tips-to-keep-email-out-of-the-spam-folder/

 

 

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