How to Ensure Email Delivery in Primary Inbox7 minutes read

Spam filtering is getting more rigorous each day. Every receiving ISP is using different spam filtering techniques, and some ISP’s utilizes some unpredictable and creative ways of combating spam that affects your email delivery. It is difficult to know why your emails end up in spam folder but there are a few things that can be taken care of to ensure that it doesn’t happen. Here is a list of reasons why it happens:

1. Links in Your Email

Using links in email that redirect to non-reputable landing pages will increase the probability of your email getting caught by spam filters. It’s also essential that hyperlink text is not an URL in itself which differs from the redirected page. Any outward facing link that links to a different page can be penalized.

Your links should be full links to the real URL. Link shortening services like are used heavily by spammers, using which can hurt your email deliverability. Instead, you can use a branded URL shortener which helps you with multiple domain names that improve your Email deliverability.

Make sure the link works before sending and use the best practice of adding a link to your website in signature.

2. Image to Text Ratio

Having an image in your email is okay, but the ratio of image to text should be low. Never send image only emails with no text. You should take the time to design an email with text and graphics – not just a single image. It is also advisable to compress your images and ensure that there are no large-sized media files.

3. Personalisation in your Emails

The more your recipient engage with your emails by opening, clicking and reading the more are your chances to reach their inbox. Hence personalization is important. A report by Campaign Monitor claims that personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened.

Care should be taken when sending emails to a list that the message is customised for the receiver. Missing a receiver’s first name is a sign that the email was not intended for them and can trigger spam filters. If you want to do the same then there are email marketing services and tools like SalesHandy helps. It has Mail Merge feature that has an option to fill in custom fields of email list from a .CSV document which allows personalization of email.

4. Stay Away from Attaching Files

Don’t attach a file unless it is essential. Having large files in the attachment is a red flag for spam filters. Instead, if you want to attach a document, host it on Google Docs and share its link, instead of attaching it with the email.

Spam filters are likely to avoid emails with heavy attachments, since they might prove risky for recipients and give way to viruses and malware.

5. Sending Too Many Emails at One Go

Sending many emails in a short span of time will alert anti-spam bots. Sending multiple emails at non-human frequency will make your emails land in the spam box. If you are using a new email address, it is important to warm it up. Prepare your email address before sending a large number of emails, start by sending a low number of emails and increase the number gradually. If you are sending mass emails then it’s important that you use a feature like Mail Merge with SalesHandy.

Their Mail Merge feature with auto-follow-up uses drip method to ensure that even when you are mass emailing your emails are sent at a predetermined frequency ensuring they reach prospect’s inbox. With it, you can send up to 5000 emails in 24 hours at one go.

6. Email Containing Spam-Trigger Words

spam trigger words

Using a personalized tone and staying away from salesy words is key and ensures best email deliverability. One of the easiest ways to land in recipients spam box is to fill your email up with words, symbols, or phrases that trigger spam filters. There are a lot of free tools to check the spam score of your copy. Being informative, interesting, creative and providing value is important.

Using a click-bait unrelated to your email will trigger anti-spam bots or the receiver may mark it as spam alerting spam filters. Here is a list of 45 words to avoid in your email marketing subject lines. Care should also be taken that the body doesn’t sound salesy. Some basic rules are:

  • Frequent use of word “free” in email
  • Not using all caps
  • Avoid using multiple colored fonts
  • Avoid or use only one exclamation point at a time
  • Stay away from words like a guaranteed winner, hot offer etc.

7. High Bounce Rate

Using a low-quality email list with emails that don’t exist or are not in use will result in high bounce rate.

A high number of hard bounce will affect email deliverability as your domain may get blacklisted. Maintaining a low bounce rate is important.

8. HTML Email that Does Not Follow Best Practices

Using HTML email can help you incorporate branding elements that makes your email more memorable and help increase engagements.

However, spam filters check for bad HTML code. One needs to follow some best practices to ensure they don’t get marked as spam:

  • Use a maximum width of 600-800 pixels.
  • Keep your image-to-text ratio low.
  • Keep your HTML code as simple and clean as possible.
  • Optimize your images for email
  • Stick with fonts that work across platforms
  • Optimise for mobile

9. Dependable ESP

The reputation of IP address and Domain of your Email service provider will affect your email deliverability. There are a number of freemium online tools that helps check your spam score. Testing in advance makes sure that your straight away don’t land up in recipients spam box. There are many email spam checker tools like Mail-Tester and Glock apps that help you check your spam score. Using these tools, you can conduct an email address test as well.

10. Clear Trustworthy Name in From Field

It is important that you use clean emails like and avoid using spammy looking email addresses to send emails from.

11. Short and Spell Checked Email

Your emails should not contain lengthy text in the body. If you are writing a large email, then proper paragraphing is a must. It is also essential to spell check your emails before sending as it is an instant spam signal especially if you are sending mass emails.

12. Using an Old Online Email Template

Using online templates opens up an opportunity that your recipient might have seen it before and might mark it as spam.

Final Words:

In summary, if you have a well written, short and precise email with a low image to text ratio, no attachment and you are sending it through a dependable ESP then your email will most probably land in recipient’s primary inbox. We hope the tips mentioned above help you achieve your goals. These were the best email deliverability practices that can come handy in everybody’s day to day life.

By Dhruv Patel

A marketer, people person, SaaS enthusiast, hustler & growth hacker. Always smiling & ready for help. Co-founder at @SalesHandy

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