How can I increase my open rate and avoid the Spam folder?

If you have a low open rate (below 10%) then you need to stop sending emails to contacts that never open to avoid any risk that your emails will be put in the spam folder. In some cases (open rates below 5% for instance) you may already notice your emails going to Spam, to stop this. you need to stop sending emails to contacts that never open.

It's crucial to maintain high engagement rates for your email deliverability. Email providers (like Gmail, Outlook, and Yahoo) all use open rates and click-through rates as metrics to decide which emails end up in the Spam folder and which emails end up in the inbox. The best way to avoid ending up in the Spam folder is to suppress inactive subscribers on a regular basis.

Are your open rates below 10%, or click rates below 2%? If so, your emails may be going to the Spam folder.

If you have noticed your emails going to spam, or if you just want to prevent this from happening in the future, then it is a best practice to suppress the subscribers that have not opened or clicked recently. To do this, there are a few steps. First, you must define which subscribers are inactive and tag them as such.


Tag inactive subscribers

You can use whichever criteria you like based on your subscribers habits, but as a general rule any subscribers that have not opened or clicked in the past 90 days can be considered inactive. AWeber automatically creates a segment of these subscribers for each list which can be found here:

  1. Start by selecting the appropriate list.

  2. Then, click the Subscribers drop down.

  3. Then, select the "Dormant Subscribers" segment. This will show everyone who is been in the system for 90 days, and has not registered a single open during that time. This also excludes those who have clicked because an open is assumed if the subscriber has clicked. Any subscribers which have already unsubscribed are also excluded.

    Select Dormant Subscribers segment

  4. Select all of the subscribers in the segment. If there are multiple pages, make sure to "Select all" like the screenshot below:

    Select all subscribers

  5. From the Actions menu, select Tag.

  6. Tag your subscribers as, "dormant".

  7. Click Apply.

    Click Apply button

  8. Now you are going to create a new Segment to send to, excluding those that are dormant. Enter the following search parameters into the Subscriber search.

    Enter tag parameters

  9. Save the search as a new segment. You can save it with the name, "Excluding Dormant" to reflect the screenshot below, or whatever name you like.

    Name and save segment

  10. The next time you Schedule a Broadcast to this list, Select the Segment you just saved to send to your highly engaged subscribers.

    Select your saved segment

  11. If you like the results and you wish to boost your deliverability moving forward, then you should suppress or delete the Dormant Subscribers permanently. This will increase your chances of reaching your target audience and delivering to the inbox rather than the Spam folder.

How to suppress low engaged subscribers permanently

If you want to part ways with your unengaged subscribers permanently, then you have a few options.

Suppress them

If you would like to keep the subscribers information for tracking purposes, you can suppress them by following the steps below.

  1. Export the segment as a CSV.

    Export segment as CSV

  2. Upload that same CSV as a Suppression list.

    Upload CSV as Suppression list

Remove them

If you would like to remove your dormant subscribers from your list, they can simply be deleted from the Manage Subscribers page. If you have more than a handful of these subscribers, you can contact AWeber's Customer Solutions team directly and we can remove them in bulk on our end. Please let our Customer Solutions team know the name of the segment you saved containing the inactive subscribers you wish to be deleted, and we will take care of the rest for you.


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