Optimization is one of the most frequently used words in an email marketer’s lexicon. In order to get into the inbox, capture attention, triumph over the competition and drive ROI, marketers must continually search out ways to optimize their email programs.
While reading up on the latest trends, innovations and recommendations can provide direction, email optimization is most impactful when it’s rooted in data. Following are a few free resources that can provide email marketers with information and data that can help move the needle for their programs.
Blacklist Lookup Tools: There are over 300 publicly available blacklists and a number of private blacklists. Senders can find themselves blacklisted for a range of reasons, with the most common being spam trap hits and subscriber complaints. Mailbox providers can reference these lists as they make determinations on whether to put mail in the inbox, the spam folder or block that message completely.
Ending up on a widely referenced blacklist, like Spamhaus, is a surefire way to see campaign performance plummet. What can make the situation even more problematic is when senders aren’t aware that they’ve been blacklisted. This tool allows marketers to determine whether a blacklist is the root of recent ROI woes.
Gmail Postmaster Tools: Gmail has a reputation of being somewhat of a black box when it comes to how they filter and sort mail. What makes this most vexing for senders is that they have a dominating global presence.
With the launch of their postmaster tools in the summer of 2015, Gmail helped shed some light on how its filtering algorithm views commercial senders. I find it surprising how many email marketers still don’t know about or don’t use this incredibly valuable tool. Qualified high-volume senders can create an account that gives them helpful data and information including:
- Spam rates
- IP reputation
- Domain reputation
Microsoft SNDS: Microsoft is a dominant player among mailbox providers with properties that include outlook.com, hotmail.com, msn.com and more. Microsoft providers their own tool to give senders insight into their sender reputation and key factors impacting reputation including:
- IP status
- Filtering results
- Complaint reports
- Spam trap hits
Sample Size Calculator: The classic email guru mantra is “test, test, test.” A/B testing is one of the best ways to optimize various elements of the email program and drive increased performance. But testing isn’t meaningful if the sample sizes aren’t statistically relevant. Sample size calculators can help minimize risk while ensuring that results are trustworthy.