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Furniture Row increases inbox placement rates by 10-15% after partnering with Validity.

The Highlights:


increase in average email open rate


increase in average click rate


increase in inbox placement rates

The challenge:

Improving email deliverability and maximizing outreach opportunities in an industry with a short customer engagement window.

Most customers prefer to shop for home furnishings in stores rather than purchasing online. To help scale marketing reach and drive more in-store traffic, Furniture Row needed to ramp up their email marketing efforts to promote holiday and weekend sales, and exclusive in-store deals.

Furniture Row’s segmentation, cadence, and list quality presented unique challenges due to the company’s seasonal nature and method of point-of-sale email collection. Even though Furniture Row used a top-tier email service provider (ESP) and a reputable deliverability solution, Google Postmaster Tools revealed the company’s reputation at Gmail was negatively impacting inbox placement and conversion.

Since more than 55 percent of Furniture Row’s recipients used Gmail addresses, this was a problem. Jason Ullman, Email Marketing Manager at Furniture Row, realized he needed better insights and actionable data to move beyond batch and blast targeting, improve list quality, and maximize deliverability performance.


“We have a very short engagement window with our customers. If we don’t connect with our customers with the right offer or message when they are actively looking, we are not going to convert them into a sale. Our buyers are either on or off; people don’t buy furniture or mattresses that often.”

Jason Ullmer – Email Marketing Manager, Furniture Row

The solution:

A partnership with Validity, the market-leading provider of email deliverability and data quality solutions.

While migrating to a new ESP, Furniture Row switched from their previous email marketing vendor to Validity.

Furniture Row leveraged Validity’s email deliverability platform to monitor inbox placement, keep tabs on engagement trends, and ensure compliance of sending domains through DMARC. Ullmer understood the importance of having access to deliverability and reputation metrics during the initial ESP warm-up period.

“Warming up new dedicated IPs and domains was a challenge with our new ESP. It was nice to have support from Validity to help monitor this process,” Ullmer said. “The Validity team helped us figure out what we needed to do to improve deliverability, including setting up DMARC.”

“Validity’s biggest value is the depth of email data and quality service. The applications are stronger and easier to use than competitors’, and email analytics allow us to better segment and improve our reach, translating to direct ROI.”

Jason Ullmer – Email Marketing Manager, Furniture Row

The results:

A wider marketing reach, leading to more in-store foot traffic and bottom-line revenue.

During the onboarding process, Furniture Row implemented DMARC policies on their sending domains and found their domains were spoofed by a number of IPs across the globe. With help from Validity, Furniture Row eliminated these threats and took steps to protect their sender reputation.

After implementing a DMARC reject policy with expert guidance from the Validity team, Furniture Row saw inbox placement increase 10-15 percent within days. This increase was consistent across all mailbox providers, including Gmail.

Using data from Validity, Ullmer improved segmentation of customers and can now measure campaign results faster. He can also quickly identify problematic campaigns through custom alerts, for increased visibility into inbox placement and spam trap hits.

“We are able to better identify engagement-based filtering per domain, something we would never be able to monitor without Validity,” Ullmer said.

Using Validity’s email performance data, Furniture Row achieved a 6-8 percent increase in average open rates, a 5-6 percent increase in average click rates, and improvement in their overall reach, helping to drive more foot traffic and bottom-line revenue.

Furniture Row® is a group of specialty home furnishings, mattress, and linen stores, carrying a variety of brand names. The company is one of the largest family-owned specialty home furnishings and bedding retailers in the United States. Since opening their first venture in 1974, Furniture Row has evolved into one of the country’s fastest-growing furniture retailers, currently operating more than 300 stores across 30 states.