8 Important Things to Know About Email Hygiene


You might think that it’s enough to earn new subscribers for your mailing list and leave it that way as you keep sending email campaigns. Leaving your mailing list is affecting your email deliverability because some subscribers, in the long run, will eventually stop engaging with your emails.

That’s why you need to regularly identify which of the subscribed emails in your mailing list are inactive so you can remove them and keep your sender’s reputation clean. This maintenance process is called email hygiene.


Through email hygiene, you can ensure that all your future email campaigns will reach your subscribers’ inboxes. Continue reading to know more about what email hygiene is, how to do it, and its benefits for email marketing.

8 Things to Know About Email Hygiene

1. Email hygiene prevents your email from being marked as spam

Mailing lists won’t always yield 100% engagement rates. There will always be a few email addresses that won’t open your email campaigns. But if you keep on sending campaigns to addresses that don’t bother opening to your mails, your engagement rates will drop. Then, internet and email service providers (ISPs and ESPs) will mark your email address, IP address, and domain as a spam-sender; worse – you get blacklisted.

Some email addresses are spam traps – email addresses that are inactive but are used to identify and block spammers. Other emails have opted to stop receiving your campaigns. If you don’t remove these inactive spam traps and opting-out email addresses from your mailing list, your sender’s reputation will be ruined, and your emails won’t get to reach your active customer’s inbox.

2. Cleaning your list is essential before deploying a campaign

As mentioned, sending campaigns to inactive, spam trapped, and opted-out email addresses ruins your sender’s reputation. To ensure that you get high engagement rates and your emails get to your active customer’s inboxes, you must identify who these bad and cold email addresses are.

Then put these addresses into a separate distribution list and remove them from your general mailing list. However, it’s not always necessary to remove inactive addresses because they haven’t read your email on 1 to 5 occasions. If they haven’t engaged your campaigns in a span of 2 to 6 months, that’s when you should remove them.

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3. There are many ways to confirm email subscriptions

Email subscription confirmations are essential because they filter out fake emails and spam traps. There are two common subscription confirmations. One is a single opt-in. The interested subscriber only needs to enter their email address without the need for validation.

This confirmation puts you at risk of receiving the aforementioned spam traps and fake emails. The next is the double opt-in method. When the new subscriber has successfully entered their email address, they’ll automatically receive another email with a link to confirm their registration.

Double opt-in confirmations filter out bots, fake emails, and spam traps from joining your mailing list. The downside of this confirmation type is you might miss new contacts because they might fail to open and click the link on the confirmation email.

Then, you have the five types of double opt-in subscription confirmation emails: Highlighting your CTA, highlighting your social media channels, showcasing your business’s features in the confirmation email, minimalistic email confirmation email design, and the Thank-You/Welcome confirmation email.

4. Reviewing the results of your campaign is a must

To stop your sender’s reputation from being damaged, you must monitor how your campaigns perform right away after you have sent them. This way, you immediately identify who isn’t opening your emails so that you’ll put them in your list segmentation of inactive subscribers.

5. Be sure to evaluate the cause of inactivity

It’s not always your subscribers’ fault that they stop opening your emails. There are a few reasons why there are inactive addresses in your list aside from bots, spam traps, and fake email addresses. One reason is that you haven’t sent them emails in a long time, that they no longer are excited to open your campaigns.

Other reasons include you sending campaigns on times that don’t match their email-reading schedules, or your campaigns don’t spark your recipients’ interest. It’s also possible that you keep sending promotional emails or fail to send campaigns that benefit your recipients. Oftentimes, your subscribers get too many emails that they don’t have time to read yours.

By evaluating the cause of their inactivity, you’ll gain insights into making better campaigns such as sending emails at the right time with a schedule, focusing on personalization, sending newsletters, and giving out incentives.

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6. Re-engaging your inactive subscribers

When you have made some adjustments to your campaigns that you feel reflect your subscribers’ needs and interests, it’s time to send those emails. Do not give up immediately on your list’s email addresses just because they were inactive for a while.

Reach out to them and figure out what they really want. Try sending different templates and content through the use of A/B testing. You can also send them a survey or feedback form.

7. Keep your content perfect and interesting

Subject lines are the first thing that your recipients need when receiving your emails. Make them eye-catching, witty, direct, short while not sounding sales in nature. Check your content for any grammatical errors, broken links, broken images, and template errors.

These errors have a high chance of making your subscribers doubt the legitimacy of your email campaigns. If they find your emails to be sketchy, they will report your campaigns as spam resulting in you labeled as a spammer or being blacklisted. Always send yourself a sample of your campaigns and double-check everything.

8. Buying email lists is always a bad idea

It’s very tempting to buy email addresses to expand your mailing lists. But this is a bad idea. Mailing lists usually contain spam traps and are filled with inactive email addresses. If the email addresses aren’t inactive, those who get to receive your campaigns will report you for spam because they don’t know who you are, and they never gave consent to get your emails.

If you want to grow your mailing list, do it the right way. Give incentives to those who can invite other customers and the new ones they have invited. Drive more traffic to your website and make your business appear first on the search page by employing SEO strategies.


An extensive mailing list doesn’t necessarily mean success. If your mailing list has many contacts, but most of these contacts are inactive, that could ruin your sender’s reputation and make your business get blacklisted from email marketing.

Monitor the engagement rates of your campaigns at all times. Identify which email addresses in your lists are bots, fake, and spam traps. Remove them immediately. Remove the addresses that have gone inactive for more than three months.

Then, include a double opt-in confirmation for your email list subscription to keep the bad email addresses out and avoid buying email addresses for the sake of growing your mailing list.

Hi, I'm Raj Hirvate and I am a Tech Blogger from India. I like to post about technology and product reviews to the readers of my blog. Apart from blogging i'm a big Anime fan I Love Watching Naruto, One piece and Death Note.