When you’re crafting an email for your audience, you’ll probably spend a lot of time coming up with a compelling subject line to try and improve the open rate and avoid triggering spam filters.
You might also spend hours making sure that the content of your email is relevant to the target audience, contains appropriate imagery, and has a clear call to action.
But how much time do you spend reviewing your email footer?
The answer for many organizations is ‘not much time at all’.
Email footer design is often overlooked during the email development process, but it shouldn’t be. Email footers can be just as important as other areas of your email, and failing to include certain information in your footer can mean you don’t comply with legislation.
In this article, we’re going to look at why email footers are so important, the content you should include in your email footer, and share some best practice tips for email footer design to help you get more out of your emails.
Why is email footer design an essential part of an email?
An email footer is an essential part of your email as it provides information to ensure your organization complies with legal requirements, enhances the memorability of your email, and encourages your recipients to engage with you further.
There’s an interesting concept called the ‘serial position effect’ which suggests that people typically have a better memory of the things they see first and last, with content in the middle being less memorable.
With the footer of your email being the last thing your audience sees before they close your message, it’s important that it leaves them with a positive lasting impression of your organization and encourages them to explore your brand further through the use of a clear call to action or signposts to further content.
Your email footer is also where you should include certain information that is required by law.
In the UK, the Companies Act 2006 made it necessary for the email footer of any limited company or partnership to include:
Company registration number and country of registration
The details of your registered office address
In the US, the CAN-SPAM legislation also requires that an email footer includes reference to a physical address where people can reach you.
Legislation across the US and Europe also requires you to make it easy for your recipients to unsubscribe from your emails. So having a clear and simple unsubscribe link in your email footer is also essential.
Be mindful that legal requirements vary from country to country, so it’s important to seek the right legal advice based on the location of your business and your audience.
What should an email footer include?
Your organization is unique, and your email footer is going to reflect that.
There are certain things that you need to include in your footer to be compliant with legislation.
But outside of this, the things you choose to include in your email footer design depend on your objectives and the impression you want to leave on your audience.
Your email footer can help reinforce your brand identity to your email subscribers. So it’s often recommended to include your logo, brand fonts, and brand color scheme in your email footer design. This helps your recipients to recognize your brand and make the connection between your website and other marketing materials.
Social media links
Many email footer designs include links to an organization’s social media profiles. This can be a great way to direct your email subscribers to your other online channels, so you can build stronger relationships and promote your products or services across multiple platforms.
Links to relevant resources
You might also consider including links to relevant blog posts, white papers, or case studies in your email footer if your objective is to establish expertise and authority with your recipients.
If you want your email to be more conversion-focused, you might consider a clear call-to-action in your email footer design that encourages your audience to take a specific action such as signing up for an event, booking a consultation, or making a purchase. If you’re linking through to your website from your CTA, make sure your landing page is well-optimized.
Testimonials or reviews
If you want to build trust and credibility with your audience, another thing you might include in your email footer is a recent testimonial or review. This can help provide social proof to your audience, and demonstrate the real-world benefit of your organization, service, or product.
Awards or accreditations
Including the logos of any awards or accreditations your organization has won can also be a good way to establish trust and credibility with your audience.
Important news or upcoming releases
Another thing you might consider including in your email footer is the headline of some recent news about your organization, that links through to the full article. Alternatively, you might include a teaser for upcoming products or services to raise awareness amongst your subscribers.
A link to your referral program
If you have a referral program for your business, your email footer template can also be a good place to remind your subscribers of the benefits of referring their colleagues, friends, and family.
A link to your email preference center
The key to successful email marketing is relevancy. An email preference center allows your subscribers to tell you the type of email content they are interested in, and their preferred frequency for receiving emails. If you have an email preference center, including a link to it in your email footer is another good idea.
Branding is important in your email footer design
You have a lot of options for what you might choose to include in your email footer template.
But it’s important to remember that less is often more.
Try to keep your email footer clean, clear and concise, and resist the temptation to include too much information. Decide on what is the most important information for your organization to communicate, and focus on delivering that in the most effective way possible.
Many organizations choose to include their logo in their email footer template. This can help create a visual connection between the email and your brand and can increase brand recognition and recall.
It’s also important to make sure your email footer design aligns with the branding and color scheme of your website and other marketing materials. This can help reinforce your branding and helps create a cohesive experience for users across all your different marketing channels.
Reminder - don’t forget the legal requirements!
It’s easy to get caught up with creative ideas for what you might include in your email footer design, and how it can help you build a stronger connection with your audience.
But don’t forget about the important legal information that needs to be in there.
Failing to include the relevant information in your email footer can result in your organization being issued a fine of up to £1000.
As a quick recap, the information that any limited company or limited liability partnership needs to include in their email footer includes:
Company registration number and country of registration
The details of your registered office address
You also need to include a clear unsubscribe button that allows your recipients to easily opt-out of receiving further emails from you.
Other legal information you might want to include in your email footer is a link to your terms and conditions. This can be useful for outlining the terms of service for your products or services.
How to create an email footer
Your email footer design is a really important part of your marketing emails.
It’s important that you design and build your footer in a way that looks professional, is visually engaging for your audience, and delivers maximum impact.
If you have access to an in-house designer or have freelance design support, they will be able to help you communicate the messages you want to convey in a visually appealing way.
If it’s something you feel like you want to tackle yourself, there are a number of pre-existing email footer templates on affordable design solutions like Canva.
If you’re looking for some inspiration for your email footer design, the following articles have some good examples:
Remember, for email footer best practice it’s important to keep it simple and easy to read. Try to avoid cluttering your email footer with too much information, and stick to a clean and simple design that is consistent with your branding.
Once you have your footer designed, you’ll need someone to create it as part of your HTML email template.
The person who usually produces your emails should be able to translate your design into a working email footer that is ready to be included as part of your next email campaign.
Make sure your email footer delivers a strong ending to your email
If you’ve followed this article to the end, you’ll understand why your email footer is an important part of your email marketing strategy that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Having an effective email footer design can help you comply with legal requirements, leave a lasting impression on your audience, and encourage them to engage with your brand further.
Ready to put these tips into practice? Sign up for a one-month free trial of Simplelists.
At Simplelists, we make email marketing easy and have full support for HTML emails. Register for our free trial, and see how simple it can be to reach your audience with emails that include your brand-new email footer.
But these kinds of results don’t happen by accident.
A well-managed mailing list is essential as the foundation of an effective email marketing campaign.
In this article, we’ll discuss email list management best practices for building, segmenting, and personalising your electronic mailing list as well as strategies for keeping it clean and up to date.
What is an electronic mailing list and how does it work?
An electronic mailing list is a collection of email addresses from people that have opted-in and agreed to receive emails from your organization. A healthy email list is important if you want to see success from your email marketing activities.
In the early days of email marketing, it was typical for all the recipients of an electronic mailing list to receive the same message from a business.
But with modern email management solutions, it’s best practice to segment your mailing list using criteria like demographics, location and buying behaviour.
Working with email management solutions that support segmentation enables you to deliver more relevant emails to the recipients on your mailing list and improve the performance of your email marketing.
How to build an email list
Building an email list may feel like a daunting task to some people.
Generating thousands of subscribers is very rarely something that happens overnight. Patience and hard work are key.
We’ve put together a few methods that can help you build your electronic mailing list.
Newsletter sign-up on your website
Make it easy for people that are visiting your website and enjoying your content to sign up to your list.
Have a clear, attention-grabbing call to action that prompts people to sign up. Don’t hide your email list sign-up form at the bottom of your footer!
One email list management best practice is to include the use of modals or slide-in banners on your website that clearly state the benefits of becoming part of your email list, to help prompt engaged site users to sign up.
Social media promotions
Your social media channels can also help you build your email list.
Some channels like LinkedIn and Facebook give you the ability to run ‘lead generation’ ads. With a lead gen ad, a recipient will typically sign up for your email list in exchange for a valuable piece of content you’ve provided.
The success of Lead Gen ads really depends on the value of the content you provide as your ‘lead magnet’, but it can be an effective way to build up email subscribers.
Organic social media can also help you build your list. You might consider running a promotion that encourages your followers to sign up for your newsletter to receive an exclusive discount.
If you ever exhibit at trade shows, exhibitions or conferences, make sure to collect email addresses from the people who visit your stand.
To keep data secure, it’s often email list management best practice to use an electronic device like a tablet to collect email addresses in person.
Email list management best practices
Once the number of contacts in your list starts building, there are certain best practices to follow to ensure you get the best out of your email marketing efforts and adhere to all relevant legislation.
Make sure you meet all legal requirements
The most important step in email list management is to make sure you comply with all local legislation.
One of the important things to remember is that you should only process the data for customers that have directly opted into your email list, or that meet another legal basis for processing data under the GDPR.
You should also make it easy for any subscribers to opt out of your email list at any time.
Design an onboarding strategy
When subscribers first join your mailing list, your ‘welcome series’ of emails can really help set the tone for their experience with your organization.
The first email should ideally welcome them to your list and set their expectations for what they are likely to receive from you in the future.
You might use the next two emails to help illustrate your brand story, what makes you unique and the value you offer to customers. You might also introduce your email preference centre at this point, to allow customers to let you know the types of emails they are interested in receiving.
You can then tailor future emails based on the subscribers’ preferences.
Prioritise quality over quantity
Making sure you manage expectations properly and only send emails that are relevant to subscribers is the key to building long-lasting relationships with the people on your email list.
Sending a high volume of emails to an audience that is uninterested and disengaged is likely to lead to high spam reports and high unsubscribes. These are both things that can impact your email deliverability.
Sending emails that are highly relevant to each recipient is the secret to developing a healthy email list. You can achieve this through personalization and segmentation in your mailing list manager.
Personalise your emails and campaigns
By including personalized details such as the recipient’s name, or the products they have recently shown an interest in, you can build a more personal connection with the people on your email list.
Personalisation can also improve the performance of your emails.
A study by Campaign Monitor found that people were 26% more likely to open emails with personalized subject lines. So personalization within your email list manager is important.
Segment your email list
Segmentation is one of the most important things you can do to optimise the performance of your emails and maintain a healthy email list.
By tailoring your emails to your subscribers’ details and preferences, you can deliver more targeted content that really resonates with them. This will increase the relevancy and lead to more opens, clicks and conversions, as well as reduce spam complaints.
Common segmentation methods for email list management best practices include:
Demographics (age, gender)
Stage in the customer lifecycle
Make it easy to unsubscribe
Including an easy, simple way to unsubscribe from your emails is necessary if you’re going to comply with current legislation.
Including an easy unsubscribe has the additional benefit of reducing the number of spam complaints which can have a positive impact on your overall deliverability.
Deal with inactive subscribers
Your sender reputation matters in email marketing.
If you continue to send emails to inactive subscribers on your email list, you are artificially reducing your own open rate.
If a subscriber is inactive for a period of time consider sending them a re-engagement email to try and encourage them to start interacting with your email again. This might include a personalized message such as “We miss you!...” with an incentive like an offer or promotion to get them opening and clicking through.
If the recipient doesn’t engage with this approach, you might consider moving them to an ‘inactive’ segment or removing them from your list completely.
Let users manage their preferences
Preference management is another email list management best practice that allows your subscribers to have control over the frequency and types of emails they receive.
Your subscribers should ideally be prompted to update their preferences in your email preference centre during their onboarding stage and reminded at regular intervals.
By understanding how often recipients want to be contacted and the type of email they would like to receive, you can improve your relevancy and overall email performance.
Track your results
You should keep an eye on important metrics like bounces and undeliverable messages, and take steps to remove these records from your database.
Tracking your email marketing results is also important for understanding what works and what doesn’t.
You should also ensure that any links in your emails have the correct tracking parameters for your chosen analytics platform. This can help you measure things like dwell time and the conversions that come from each of your emails
Some mailing list management platforms can also help you understand metrics such as open rates, click-through rates and the performance of different elements of your emails which can help you optimise even further and make data-driven decisions to improve your email campaigns.
What about using email list software?
Choosing the right email list software is important for helping you to effectively manage your email subscriber list.
It’s important to choose a mailing list manager that can help support you with subscriber forms, segmentation, and the analysis of important deliverability data.
At Simplelists, we pride ourselves on making email list management easy.
We’ve got everything you need to set up, build, and manage an effective electronic mailing list. And it’s simple for anyone to get started.
In the digital communication landscape, email is one of the most traditional channels.
Nonetheless, in recent years, an increasing number of people have questioned whether email is still so necessary – or could be potentially replaced with less time-consuming marketing tactics.
Indeed, several new forms of communication have emerged over the years, mostly in the social media landscape, where the automation tools appear to be more user-friendly and simple-to-use than designing a lead generation and email marketing strategy from scratch.
Despite this, email marketing continues to grow in popularity and is a sure bet for ROI success.
Consider this: for every dollar spent on email marketing, you can expect an average ROI of $40 (source: Omnisend)!
However, approaching an email marketing campaign – particularly a group email one – without relying on a powerful mailing list tool can force you to deal with security, GDPR, and management issues that can seriously undermine your efforts and results.
This is why today we’ll look at:
What email marketing really entails in today’s business landscape;
The key advantages of an effective email marketing strategy – such as the possibility to segment your target audience and personalize your message;
How a user-friendly and powerful email marketing tool, such as Simplelists, can make the difference.
Let’s investigate further!
What is email marketing?
Email marketing, in a nutshell, is a digital marketing strategy that entails sending emails to a specific group of people to promote a newsletter, event, offer, product, or service.
Consider that by 2025, the number of email users worldwide is expected to reach 4.6 billion (source: Statista) – accounting for more than half of the world population, – with over 375 billion emails expected to be sent and received each day.
That’s why, to make the most of it, businesses typically create a list of email addresses collected via ad hoc lead generation forms, in order to:
Efficiently track and analyze their efforts, including using the right automation tools;
Better understand their target audience;
Focus on consent, segmentation, and personalization, abandoning the outdated outbound approach.
So, let’s quickly compare a few different channels:
Social Media Marketing: Social media allows businesses to interact and build relationships with their potential customers, but the competition is fierce. Their ROI varies depending on the platforms’ algorithm, but it is typically $2.80.
Search Engine Optimization: With a ROI of $22.24, SEO is an essential tool for any business, because ranking higher on search engines means being more easily found by the potential customers.
Pay-per-click Advertising: PPC ads have an average ROI of about $17 and they help businesses leverage their search engine visibility. However, this is not a one-to-one channel, but rather an advertising tactic. Indeed, 64% of people believe that basic ads are frequently intrusive and annoying (Source: Optinmonster).
Email Marketing: With a stunning ROI of $40, email offers a better conversion rate than any social media channel, as well as a higher degree of personalization and audience segmentation. In the long run, in fact, an email strategy helps building a community of loyal customers and is the most profitable and cost-effective direct marketing channel for moving customers through the purchasing cycle.
As you can see, email is still the most effective digital marketing channel, and a combination of SEO, social, PPC, and email marketing can really help you easily build the most powerful digital marketing strategy – where email can enhance all the other channels, allowing you to retain and communicate with your customers individually.
Let’s take a closer look at the key email marketing benefits!
4 Major Email Marketing Benefits
Have you ever felt frustrated and overwhelmed while attempting to segment your target audience and personalize their message?
A non-personalized approach – whether through ads, messages, or posts – can have a negative impact on your marketing strategy and result in:
Lower engagement and conversion rates, as you won’t be able to address your potential leads’ specific needs, making it difficult to pique their interest and convert them into customers.
Higher costs, because a one-size-fits-all approach would necessitate more resources to reach a broader audience;
Inefficient customer loyalty, as personalization and segmentation are the foundations for building a relationship with customers.
So, why can a proper email marketing strategy – with the help of an efficient email marketing software – help you avoid such risks?
The answer is simple: The key is personalization, which is at the heart of mail marketing.
People, in fact, appreciate it when brands add personal touches to their messages – and email marketing, by definition, allows you to segment your target audience into specific lists that are based on different demographic or psychographic criteria, as well as easily get direct feedback.
A personalized email strategy, in fact, can drive more conversions than any other digital channel – with 66% of online consumers making a purchase as a result of an email marketing message (source: Monetate) – and it is much more efficient if it’s based on a well segmented opted-in list.
You might think it’s easier said than done at this point...
Please, hold on! If you want to segment and personalize your email lists based on various criteria, you should use an efficient email marketing platform.
We at Simplelists understand exactly how such a tool can make a difference for businesses of all sizes. That’s why our group email software includes features dedicated to email customization and segmentation, ranging from multiple lists management to styling.
As above-mentioned, email marketing clearly has enormous potential for enhancing sales and driving lead generation.
Indeed, if you rely solely on social media or search ads to increase sales, you should be aware that while these channels can help you attract new visitors – and reach a larger number of people at once, – they cannot always help you retain customers or nurture relationships with them.
On the other hand, email would give your company a direct channel to reach out to potential customers and nurture the relationship throughout every stage of the buyer’s journey.
To name a few, email marketing can help you leverage sales in the following ways:
Generating new leads through the creation of a well-structured landing page and opt-in form, allowing you to collect email addresses from both website, social, or ads, to then build a targeted email list that can really make a difference during new product launches;
Lead nurturing and helping leads move through the sales funnel by sending them highly targeted and personalized messages based on their interests and purchase habits, such as special birthday offers, welcome discounts, or abandoned cart emails, in order to create a one-to-one relationship and stimulate the brand loyalty;
Promoting new products, services, or business events through the right email campaign, including powerful calls to action and multimedia content.
As you can see, there are numerous approaches to driving sales through email marketing.
However, all of them would benefit greatly from using an email list management tool like Simplelists.
As a matter of fact, there are several technical details that can make you waste time and effort when segmenting and personalizing your email strategy, going from the design of landing pages to email footers, and email moderation.
What our clients appreciate most about our simple tool is that it allows them to quickly address all of these issues in no time by allowing them to easily customize their emails, subscription forms, footers, and even posting restrictions.
Whatever the size of your company, this can save you a lot of time and resources to devote to your sales or business strategy!
Another significant advantage of email marketing is that it allows businesses to retain and engage existing customers, encouraging repeat business and driving visitors back to websites.
This is because the use of targeted and personalized offers allows for a one-to-one relationship, which gives birth to a proper customer retention and remarketing strategy that can engage customers who have previously:
Purchased your products or services;
Visited your website, blog, or landing pages;
Abandoned their online cart.
Indeed, did you know that sending three abandoned cart emails generates 69% more orders? (source: Omnisend).
However, fidelizing a customer means being present and providing a timely newsletter in order to be perceived as also an expert in your industry. In fact, retaining a customer entails more than selling products or notifying abandoned carts, but also sharing educational content.
With the right strategy, email drives customer loyalty and becomes a necessary channel to use in conjunction with:
A sales CRM system to streamline communication;
An email list management tool to speed up the email delivery process.
Have you ever struggled to find the right channels and times to effectively reach your target audience?
This happens to almost every business.
Selecting the most appropriate channels for a specific campaign in a constantly evolving tech market can be extremely difficult and may depend on a variety of factors.
In fact, while a B2B company may find their target on LinkedIn, a B2C retailer may prefer Instagram or TikTok. However, there is one thing that all business types have in common: email marketing.
Email is unquestionably one of the digital channels that allows anyone to create a truly timely campaign to support the:
Promotion of events, including workshops and webinars;
Seasonal campaigns and product launches;
Time-limited offers, such as discounts or free shipping, which create a sense of urgency and encourages impulsive buying;
Trend-based campaigns which are based on popular topics.
Having said that, it’s clear that email campaigns can help you reach the right people at the right time, providing far more value to the target audience.
Why use Simplelists for your Email Marketing Strategy?
Last but not least, we’d like to show you how Simplelists, our user-friendly email list tool, can truly help you reap the benefits of email marketing by allowing you to:
To emphasize the significance of selecting the right tool, we can tell you that segmented and effective email marketing campaigns can result in a 760% increase in overall revenue (source: DMA).
So, to ensure that you get the best results possible, our tool includes a dedicated email delivery feature that gives you access to:
Email delivery reports, which include full receipt information on successful and unsuccessful email deliveries;
Email delivery failures, which help you track all bounces and drawbacks.
Would you like to get rid of advertising?
This is one of the major disadvantages of using free email marketing tools or providers that typically place advertisements in your emails.
It is not only annoying, but it may cause your emails to:
Go directly to your subscribers’ spam folders;
Be perceived as spammy;
Shift the focus from your content to the ads.
That is why Simplelists emails are free of advertisements and allow you to send the most professional and effective messages!
Lets you send HTML emails
Finally, another way you could use Simplelists to improve your email marketing campaigns is by designing and sending eye-catching HTML emails.
Our tool, in fact, will not limit you to the use of preset templates, but will allow you to easily customize and create your emails the way you want, so that you can:
Reflect your branding;
Gain more design control;
Send more engaging, safe, and trackable emails.
As we’ve seen today, developing a valuable marketing strategy can be difficult and time-consuming.
Emails provide numerous benefits, ranging from lead generation to remarketing and branding, but only through the use of a valuable email list tool you can make a difference for your company and achieve the desired results.
Two of the most popular reasons that our customers use Simplelists are as a listserve and for email marketing. However, these are not the only things you can use it for. We have designed Simplelists to be flexible so that you can complete a range of tasks. Here are some of the key ones.
Managing your email list
You can upload your email list members to Simplelists in bulk, directly from a file. If you have a lot of list members, this saves you time as you can export the list details to a file and upload it in seconds.
You can also download your list. We recognise that your email list is your property and we make it really easy for you to generate a copy of your email list. You can download your whole list of members into a file that can be opened in a spreadsheet.
It is very easy to set posting permissions in Simplelists. This means that you can select who can send emails to your list. You might choose to enable this for all members, select some members, or make yourself the sole person with the permission to post to the list.
You can also moderate messages that are due to be sent to your list. You have several options: no moderation required (messages are sent straight to the members of your list), hold all messages for approval, or allow specific members to post without needing your approval first.
You might want to manage replies as well - you can select whether email replies are sent to everyone on the list or only to the person who sent the original email.
Setting posting restrictions can be useful if you permit other members to send emails to your list. This would ensure they don’t send very large emails, for example. You can set a maximum email size (in kB), remove attachments, strip HTML formatting and/or truncate messages to a specified maximum number of characters.
Finally, you may or may not want to allow your list members to see who else is on the list. Again, you have options - you can allow members to view all names and emails, allow them to see names only, or remove the ability to see names or emails.
Customise your emails
With Simplelists, it is very easy to customise your emails by including a personalised footer and a subject prefix. You can include HTML in the footer so your members can see graphics or logos. Or, you can use HTML throughout the email for complete customisation. You can also personalise your emails by inserting each recipient’s name at the start.
You can archive all your emails. When you activate this feature, all emails will be stored on a custom website so that you can access them in the future. You can set a password for the archive, if you wish.
Simplelists offers the function to search your email archives. This can be useful for people who join your list, helping them to familiarise themselves with the list topic. It is also very useful to have a back up of all of your communications, in case you need to refer to something or check a point of reference. We have written in a previous post about how to set up your archive and personalise it.
How to find the message you are looking for
It would not be entirely unlikely for a busy email list to accumulate hundreds or thousands of emails over a period of years. When you add a new member to a list, they can be given the option to read emails that were sent prior to the date they joined, and/or read emails about a specific topic. For the latter, the keyword search function can be used. Alternatively, it is possible to browse all messages, sorted by date or by thread.
How to access the archive
Log in to your Simplelists account. From the Members home page, under 'What would you like to do?’, select 'View list archives’. At this stage, you may be required to enter a password, if one has been set up by the list manager. If you do not know the password, you can request an access code at this point by entering your email address.
When in the email archive, emails are ordered by month and year. In the search box at the top, you can enter a keyword and any relevant emails will be shown. It is also possible to view list statistics on this page, as well as read more detailed information about the list.
These search tips will help you to find what you are looking for:
Search by specific month
This option is useful if you want to browse to a specific month and then search within it.
If you type a '?’, it will be replaced with any single character. This can help when you are not sure how to spell a word. So, if you were perhaps looking for an email related to the 'Worthbury Derby’ but you couldn’t remember whether 'Worthbury’ was spelt with an 'i’ or an 'o’, you can type 'W?rthbury’ and the generated results will include both spellings.
If you type a *, it will be replaced with any number of characters. So, for the Worthbury Derby, if you weren’t sure at all how to spell Worthbury, you could type 'W*ry’ and the results would show all emails starting with a 'W’ and ending in 'ry’.
For those of you with a multiple list account, you have the option to use your own domain rather than simplelists.com. You can add more than one domain and you have the freedom to brand the email system as your own. If you combine this with branding your landing pages (as we showed you in a previous blog), your emails will be very professional and aligned to your brand/image.
Setting up your own domain
Log in to your multiple list account, click on ‘General Settings’ and then select the ‘Domains’ tab. Type in your domain name and click ‘Add’. In the list that appears next, set your domain name as ‘primary’. You should then be able to view your new email addresses on the ‘List members’ page.
Configure your MX records
After you have added your domain name, you need to configure the mail exchange records associated with it. You do this via your web hosting control panel. In your panel, set the Primary MX record to ‘mx1.simplelists.com’ and the Secondary MX record to ‘mx2.simplelists.com’. You will find a step by step guide for doing this in cPanel in this short video. Please be aware that it can take up to 72 hours for the changes to come into effect. How long it takes depends on your web hosting settings.
There are also some things you can do to improve the deliverability of your messages. SPF records prevent spammers from sending messages with false/forged email addresses from your domain. DKIM records help to verify the sender and show that a message has not been altered on its way to the recipient.
If you choose to use your own domain with Simplelists, we recommend that you add both of these DNS records to your domain. When logged into your Simplelists multiple lists account, navigate to ‘General Settings’ and the ‘Domains’ tab. Scroll down to find the details you’ll need to add the DNS records. Then, open your web hosting control panel and complete the required fields for the SPF and DKIM records. You can see instructions for how to do this using cPanel in this short video.
All of these instructions can be viewed in two short videos on a previous post on our blog.
It has been estimated that just under 80% of emails sent by email marketers to people who signed up to your list reach the inbox. This is a pretty staggering number when your recipients have subscribed legitimately. This is because spam filters are becoming increasingly sensitive to make sure that non-legitimate emails do not get delivered. To avoid your email ending up in the spam folder, there are some simple things you can do.
Have a good email list
It is important that you make sure that the people you are emailing want to hear from you. We do not recommend that you buy or rent email lists that you can’t trust the source of, and it’s crucial that your list members have opted in to receiving your correspondence.
The easiest and most common way to do this is to get them to subscribe to a mailing list, either via a website or links on social media. You can assume that, if people visit your site, they are likely to be interested in the information/product you provide. You could add a sign-up box on all of your pages to allow users to join the list.
Ask your recipients to put you on their contact list
It is pretty much guaranteed that emails are delivered to the inbox if your list members have added you to their address book/contact list. In your welcome/first email you could ask them to add you to their contact list. You could also ask them to do this in the body of other emails that you send.
Mind the subject line
It is important to take care with the subject line of your email as it can affect the likelihood of your email avoiding the spam folder. We have written another short post on how to write a good subject line – the key message is that it should not be too much longer than 35 to 50 characters. The longer the subject line, the more likely it is that the email will go to the spam folder.
Make it easy to unsubscribe
While this might sound counter-intuitive, making the unsubscribe link visible on your emails can actually help overall deliverability to your list. It is preferable that your recipients choose to unsubscribe themselves, rather than marking your email as spam.
Email providers such as Gmail, Hotmail and others keep track of spam complaints and may penalise you, affecting how many of your other emails are delivered. If you make it easy for your list members to unsubscribe, the risk of the email service provider blocking all the emails you send is minimised.
Don’t forget that it is important to understand that there are laws governing the sending of emails to a list – you can read more about email spam and the law in one of our earlier posts.
We have written on this blog before about the importance of email deliverability and what we do to ensure your emails reach their recipients. Spam filters implemented by different email clients (Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc.) are becoming increasingly sensitive, to make sure that non-legitimate, spam emails aren’t delivered. Ensuring emails are delivered to the inbox is pretty much guaranteed if your list members have 'whitelisted’ you. This means, simply, that you (as the sender) have been added to their list of 'approved’ or 'safe senders’. Different email clients carry out the whitelisting process in different ways and use different terminology. In this short post, we explain how to whitelist email addresses in Gmail.
Gmail is pretty efficient at identifying non-important and potentially harmful emails that you probably don’t want to open. However, it isn’t 100% correct all of the time and, to make sure important emails never end up in the Gmail spam folder, you can tell Gmail that emails from a particular sender are safe, allowing those messages to pass through the filter. If important emails keep getting sent to your spam folder in Gmail, you need to add email addresses to the safe senders list to whitelist them.
Set up a filter
In Gmail, it is possible to set up 'filters’ to whitelist a sender (or senders). You can apply a filter to a specific email address, a whole domain, or a mix of both. First of all, click on the gear icon in your inbox and select 'Settings’ from the menu. Then, select the 'Filters and blocked addresses’ tab when viewing the Settings menu. Click the link called 'Create a new filter’ (if you have a lot of filters in place already you’ll see this at the bottom of the list, like in the diagram below). Select 'Never send it to spam’. This will make sure emails that match the filter description will always reach the inbox.
Filtering a specific email address or a whole domain
In the 'From’ field, enter the email address in full that you would like the filter to apply to. If you want to filter a specific email address, write the whole address, like 'email@example.com’. If you want to whitelist all emails from a specific domain, you can just type '@emailbusiness.com’ to put all emails from this domain on the list of safe senders. There are other options but the 'From’ field must be filled out.
Filtering more than one email or domain
You do not need to repeat these steps for multiple emails and/or domains. A handy tip is to put a vertical bar (Shift and then the backslash '\’ key, with a space before and after it) between the separate emails you wish to filter. For example: firstname.lastname@example.org | email@example.com | firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also filter messages directly from an email as you receive it. So, if you find an important email in your Spam folder, which should have come to the Inbox, you can open it and then apply the filter so it ends up in the right place next time. When you have the email open, click on the vertical dots in the right hand corner and then select 'Filter messages like these’ (see below).
The email address of the sender will then be auto-filled in the next form in the 'From’ field and you can create a filter from there, as before.
It is worth knowing that when you whitelist an email or domain in Gmail, the filter does not work retrospectively. That is, it does not apply to emails that are already in the Spam/Trash folders.
When you send emails to your list using Simplelists it is possible to insert members’ names into the emails. This personalises the message and allows recipients to see their name in the short email preview they may see in their inbox. This short post explains how to use this feature.
Activate the feature
First of all, activate this feature for your Simplelists account by sending an email to email@example.com to request the 'activate the insert names feature’.
Enter the correct text when composing your message
When you write your message to your list, insert $FIRSTNAME in your email in the exact place(s) you would like the member’s first name to appear. If you want their surname to appear as well, write $SURNAME where you want this to be.
If you do this, each member of your list will received a personalised email which includes their name.
Thank you for joining our group. You will received monthly updates and...etc.
If you don’t know their name
If a member’s first and/or last name is not included in your address book, you can request your preferred default name to be used instead. When you contact us to activate the 'insert name’ feature, let us know your preference for a default option. For example, you could choose 'Member’, 'Customer’ or 'Group Member’.
If you do this, in a case where you didn’t know the first name, the above example would read:
Thank you for joining our group. You will received monthly updates and...etc.
When should you use this feature?
Personalising emails is recognised as increasingly important for email marketing. For example, many mail clients show the first 10-20 words of a message in the inbox before the email is opened. At a glance, readers can therefore see immediately whether an email addresses them by name or not. If their name isn’t there, they may be more tempted to delete the message as they would deem it unimportant or irrelevant.
For this reason, we recommend that you use the 'insert name’ feature in all your email marketing messages. Even if you are not using your emails for marketing purposes, inserting members’ names will help people to engage more with your list and feel a sense of involvement in the group.
If you’re using Simplelists for email marketing, you should be aware that segmenting your email list is one of the best ways to boost the effectiveness of any email marketing campaigns that you run. This is because you can ensure that the email suits your client’s specific interest(s) and increase the likelihood that they open your email and respond to your call to action.
If you are using Simplelists for private groups discussions, you may already be pretty familiar with the segments of your list. If it’s something you want to think about some more, or run a specific marketing campaign, here are four tips for email segmentation to help you get the results you want.
1. Split your list into groups that are alike
Your email recipients aren’t all alike and there are very likely to be groups (or segments) that exist in your list. Are there age groups that might respond differently to your call to action, or are there particular interests that you could focus on? Each group will need its own email stream with content that suits the reader. Common groups tend to fall under four headings:
geography (location, language, climate, etc.);
demography (age, gender, income, etc.);
psychology (lifestyle, opinions, values, etc.); and
behaviour (purchase usage, buyer stage, user status, etc.).
2. Recognise that there are stages at which people interact with you
Your list members will require different information, depending on how long they have interacted with your business/activity. For example, someone who has visited your website once and subscribed to your email list will need different information to a long-term customer who is very familiar with your products and/or activities.
3. Build credibility
Segmenting and personalising your emails shows the recipient that you are interested in more than just selling to them. Instead, you take the time to get to know them as well as looking into their needs and interests.
4. Go beyond the obvious
You don’t need to think only about people’s interests now and what other groups they fit into at this time. You could have a think about what they might aspire to them in the future with regards and goods or services that might appeal to them. You could also think about using 'negative data’ i.e. if they prefer one brand, they might be likely to be disinterested in another.