5 Deliverability Tips for Higher-Education Email

There isn’t a magical checklist that instantly guarantees your school’s email delivery. It’s an evolving science that we’re always adapting to, but we do know a few things for sure.

Email providers first look at your school’s sender reputation when deciding what to do with your email. The better your school’s reputation, the better your chances are of being delivered to the inbox. Colleges and universities with poor reputations risk being delivered to the spam folder—or, worse, not at all.

Find out how to gain the trust you deserve with these 5 deliverability tips for higher education email. What do email providers look at?

1. Email quality

Send emails that people want to look at, aesthetically. Emails that are poorly coded and don’t render properly in certain mailboxes are viewed as low quality and can be flagged instantly.

2. Send volume

Keep your send volume consistent. Schools that blast out emails at inconsistent times and volumes can cause deliverability problems. Sending to giant lists, especially purchased lists, also creates risk.

3. Complaints

If recipients consistently mark your school’s emails as spam, you’re experiencing a sender reputation problem. Keeping your spam complaints below 1% is a good goal. Send to people who are expecting your email, and provide an easy-to-see “Unsubscribe” link at the top of your message – not buried in the footer.

4. List health

Keep your list clean and avoid sending to people who didn’t opt-in, or recipients who haven’t opened your emails in a long time. Email providers create spam traps that try to catch senders who blast out to bad lists, subsequently marking that sender as a spammer.

5. Lower bounce rates

Be sure your school’s ESP (email service provider) removes hard bounces (emails that bounce back because the address is no longer valid) from your list. It’s crucial to maintain list hygiene by removing email addresses that haven’t engaged with your emails.

Whether you’re sending to prospective students, parents, alumni or anyone else – it’s important to build a sound sender reputation. By following the steps outlined above, you can improve the sender reputation of your college or university and increase email deliverability.


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