Best practices of using mail merge with Gmail
Emerge sends emails directly from your Gmail account and adds a sending delay between each email sent. It will maximize your chances to land in the primary inbox and prevent your emails from falling into spams compared to other email sending platforms. However, you have to abide by Google’s anti-spam policies to maximize your email deliverability.
- Warm-up your email account
If your Gmail account is new or if you have not sent a lot of emails recently, we recommend sending emails to a small list of recipients at first (50 recipients for example). Slowly increase your sending volume over time.
- Don’t send too many emails at once
For large campaigns, try sending messages to one group of recipients, wait 24 hours, and then send to another group. Stagger mass communications over several days.
- Make sure your contact list is clean
If your campaigns have a lot of bounce, Google will detect that your database is outdated or not legitimate. We strongly recommended you to keep your database as clean as possible. If we detect spamming behavior, we will have to block your account.
- Review your email content and formatting
Anti-spam filters can check email content and formatting to ensure it does not contain phishing or scam. You may check the following:
- Email formatting: we recommend you to keep formatting as simple as possible, avoid uppercases, a combination of fonts or colors, abusive use of exclamation marks.
- Email headers (or metadata): these include the Date, From, To, and Subject of your email. Spam filters will check these fields to ensure there is nothing unusual there.
- Structure of your email (HTML code): your email is made of the HTML language. Unstructured HTML code will be suspect to spam filters. We recommend you to create your email directly in the Emerge editor instead of copy-pasting text from elsewhere like Word, Google Docs or using an HTML template.
- Personalize your emails
When you are sending emails in bulk, it’s generally a good idea to personalize the emails. Personalizing subject might certainly increase your open rate.
- Provide a clear way to opt-out
Your recipients must have the ability to opt out of every email you send out. The way to opt-out can be a closing formula like “let me know if you don’t wish to receive more emails”. It needs to be clear & when people require you to opt-out, you cannot ignore them. Adding an unsubscribe link in your emails if you are running opt-in marketing campaigns is recommended.
How to avoid your emails landing into spam folders?
Spam are all unsolicited or undesired emails. To keep account safe and prevent spam, email providers have developed anti-spam filters. Applying the best practices will help you avoid landing into spam folder.
- Take care of your email and domain reputation.
If your emails have been flagged as spams in the past, spam filters will flag your email address as spam. Your domain can also be affected and end up in blacklists. We thus recommend you to keep your email campaigns clean and follow the rules described in this guide so as not to harm your reputation.
- Check your email content and formatting
Email providers may scan your email content to ensure it does not contain phishing or scam. We recommend you to avoid spam words and keep formatting as simple as possible, avoid uppercases, combination of fonts or colors, abusive use of exclamation marks.
- Your email activity is considered suspicious
Anti-spam filters would consider as unusual that you start sending large volumes of emails at once or that you are writing to a lot of people that you have never interacted with. Make sure to warm up your account
If your email still ends up in spam despite these advices, try the following:
– Remove all links from your email
– Remove any embedded images or logo
– Remove formatting, use plain-text instead
– Disable tracking before sending your emails
Spam laws vary from one country to another, you may check the applicable spam law in your country before sending campaigns.
Using Emerge for automating emailing campaign is right and legal, but spamming is definitely not. We recommend you to abide by simple guidelines, such as the one established in the CAN-SPAM act.
How to comply to CAN-SPAM?
CAN-SPAM is a law that establishes the rules for commercial email and messages, gives recipients the right to have a business stop emailing them, and outlines the penalties in case the law is violated. We cannot but recommend following these few rules:
– Tell the recipients where you are located. Include a valid physical business address in every email you send out.
– Use clear “From,” “To,” and “Reply to” language that accurately reflects who you are. You must state clearly that your message is an ad if its purpose is commercial.
– Provide a clear way to opt-out of every email you send out, and honor the unsubscribe promptly.
– Don’t sell or transfer any email addresses to another list.
– Don’t make it hard to unsubscribe from emails (avoid a paywall or several steps to unsubscribe)
– Don’t use deceptive subject lines in your emails