In email marketing, email delivery and email deliverability are two entirely different things when it comes to running an email program. Unfortunately, they are often used interchangeably, and it causes some confusion amongst non-email people around your organization.
So how do you distinguish email delivery and deliverability?
Delivery simply means that the email you just sent was accepted by your recipient’s server and did not bounce. It doesn’t mean that the email was delivered to the inbox or a folder; it simply means that it wasn’t rejected.
Email delivery rate is NOT a metric you want to use to gauge the success of your campaign or your program. Therefore, the email delivery rate is directional and should only be used as a supporting narrative for how clean your list is.
Simply put, email deliverability rate is the rate at which the email you send arrives in the inbox of your subscriber. It is one of the most important metrics to track in your program because if your emails do not get to the inbox, the downstream metrics of opens, clicks, and conversions will be affected.
Always check email deliverability. The deliverability of email is complex, and many factors affect whether or not your email lands in the inbox. Some of these factors are authentication, content, reputation, technology, and complaints, and all play equal roles in determining inbox placement.
Let’s be clear here, in that email deliverability, especially when on dedicated IPs, falls squarely on the shoulders of you, the sender and not the vendor. You cannot blame a vendor for sending your emails if your sender reputation is poor based on sending practices or list hygiene. If your vendor set up authentication when you began sending with them, it is always good to periodically check that the authentication is in place and passing.
The Email Deliverability Score
To help you manage email deliverability, the Email Experience Council has created an Email Deliverability Score. The Email Delivery Score is a numeric value that can be found in your ESP’s reporting interface. It’s not meant to be used as a scorecard for judging email success rates or open/click performance against another vendor’s numbers. Rather, it’s meant to provide guidance on the current state of your email program and where there are opportunities that need attention.
The Email Deliverability score ranges from 0 to 100. Scores below 80 indicate significant risk areas that should be addressed immediately because they could lead to serious consequences, including being blocked or throttled by ISPs if ignored.
Inbox Placement Sender Reputation
An email delivery issue is relatively common and straightforward to mitigate, but an email deliverability issue is not. There could be dozens of factors to consider in how you approach fixing it, and in most cases, it cannot be done in real-time. Therefore, patience and understanding are a requirement and often will require some changes on your part.
Have you ever had an email deliverability issue that didn’t get resolved? How did you approach fixing it?
Email deliverability and email delivery are two entirely different things when it comes to running an email program. Delivery merely means that the email you just sent was accepted by your recipient’s server and did not bounce.
Deliverability is the rate at which the email you send arrives in the inbox of your subscriber. Email deliverability problems cannot be fixed in real-time, so patience and understanding are required if there has been an issue with these components.
Email marketing is still considered one of the top ways to acquire new customers for many businesses because it’s extremely targeted, measurable, and provides insight into how your audience interacts with your brand. Email has always had some sort of positive effect on customer acquisition, but today marketers can see if their email efforts are working with Deliverability which is the process of getting emails into subscribers’ inboxes.
Email receive rates use this metric to determine just how likely they are to land in your inbox. Low email delivery can be an indicator that something about your list or your emails themselves needs attention, but it’s not always clear what might be the issue.