Email Sender and Domain Reputation

How to Avoid Spam Complaints & Unsubscribes

minute read

Post Image

Do you need to know how to avoid spam complaints and unsubscribes with your email marketing campaigns? Getting spam complaints and unsubscribes can be frustrating if you are an email marketer. While some unsubscribe and spam complaints are inevitable (here are the stats for each major industry according to Mailchimp), there are ways to reduce them. Here are eight tips to help you out.

Be Compliant

Make sure that you are getting permission before emailing your list. It goes without saying that you should never buy contacts or scrape emails. However, there’s more to it than that.

Make sure that your customers know that they are subscribing to your newsletter before you add them to your list. For example, if they purchased a product, don’t automatically add them to your daily newsletter without permission. Always be GDPR compliant.

Be Familiar

It is also crucial that your subscribers know who you are.Making yourself familiar to them will reduce spam complaint rates.

This starts with a welcome email. Sending a welcome email to new subscribers gives you a chance to introduce yourself.

In addition, make sure that you are sending your emails from your domain name and not from a personal email account. If possible, add an avatar with your logo or profile picture. Make sure that your brand name appears in the sender field.

Including a small banner heading with your log in your emails can also be useful, but don’t rely on it as some users turn off images.

Set Expectations

Set expectations both before users subscribe and after. On your signup page, make it clear what they are subscribing to. In your welcome email, make sure they know what kind of content you are going to be sending them, as well as how often you will be emailing them. This way, you are less likely to get spam complaints from surprised subscribers.

Have the Right Sending Frequency

Don’t send too many emails. Sending a lot of emails to the point of annoying your subscribers will cause some of them to either unsubscribe or mark you as spam.

The same goes for sending too few emails to the point of your subscribers forgetting who you are. Then, when they suddenly get an email from you again, they may not remember you and can mark you as spam.

Make It Easy to Unsubscribe

What is this tip doing in an article that focuses on reducing unsubscribe rates? The reality is that people who really want to unsubscribe will end up marking you as spam if they find it too difficult to unsubscribe. Have an unsubscribe link at the bottom of your emails, and don’t require users to sign into their account in order to be removed from your list.

Clean Out Your List

Clean your list regularly. Delete people who have not engaged with you (opened your emails, clicked on your links, etc). These people just skew your reporting analytics and may end up marking you as spam when they finally open one of your emails.

Send the Right Content

Always provide valuable content. Don’t be too pushy or promotional. Consider segmenting your list so that you send targeted content to all of your subscribers. Monitor your engagement rates and test out different types of content.

Verify Your Emails

It is also important to verify emails that are added to your list – or better yet, verify them before they’re even imported. There are all kinds of problematic emails that can end up on your list. For example, people typing in fake email addresses, people misspelling their email address, or outdated email addresses that are no longer in use by the owner and which you never deleted from your list. In the best case scenario, this can cause your bounce rates to go up, which can hurt your deliver ability. In the worst case scenario,one of those emails can end up being a spam trap email (emails owned by ISPs to monitor spam) which can cause the ISPs to mistakenly blacklist you.

Learn more about email verification at