As marketers, one of the most valuable assets we have is our email list. However, it’s really easy to neglect the list. Failing to ensure that the email addresses on it are accurate and up to date can create more issues than we might think.
Email list cleaning involves identifying and removing any email addresses that are invalid, inactive, or no longer in use. This can be done using software services that check each email address against a range of criteria, such as whether the domain is valid, whether the address is properly formatted, and whether it is associated with a known spam trap or blacklisted domain. However, the exercise may be as simple as just going through the emails that are persistently ‘bouncing back’ but which we continue to keep on our mailing list.
The benefits of cleaning an email list are numerous. First and foremost, it helps to improve our email deliverability rates. When we send emails to too many invalid or inactive email addresses, our email service provider may start to flag our messages as spam, which can damage our sender reputation and make it more difficult to reach real customers’ inboxes.
Email list cleaning can save money too. Many email service providers charge based on the number of subscribers on the list, so by removing inactive or invalid addresses, we reduce costs.
In addition to cleaning an email list, it’s also important to validate the list on a regular basis. This involves checking each email address to ensure that it is still active and being used by the intended recipient. This will probably have to be done manually, although that can be time-consuming and resource-intensive. Remember, we can’t sell to people who’ve left their company, or who, as the bard put it, have shuffled off this mortal coil. A great free offer of something that can be sent at little to no cost (such as an emailed document) can often get a large part of an email database to respond.
By improving deliverability rates and ensuring that that messages are reaching the right people, we can reduce costs, increase engagement and drive more sales. What’s not to like?