ATTN: If you're visiting this article as a result of an alert in your account, your SPAM/ABUSE complaints exceed 0.1% and you are in violation of the BombBomb.com Anti-Spam Policy. As a result, you may be temporarily unable to send email. Please carefully review the information in this article, and then email firstname.lastname@example.org. When we receive this notification, we will reset the alert in your account and send any email job that is "in review." Any email job that remains in review for 24hrs or more will automatically be cancelled - requiring you to re-send.
We're working hard to maintain a strong reputation and get your email delivered into the inbox. We know it can be confusing and frustrating when someone indicates your message as SPAM, so that's why we notify you and provide you with some helpful information and tips to avoid it in the future. If your lists are clean, you have nothing to worry about. It's important to note, however, that repeat offenders run the risk of having their account closed.
What Is An Abuse Report?
Abuse is reported when someone clicks "abuse" or "spam" in their email client. What he or she is saying is that the email received should not have been sent. He or she feels like you don't have permission to send them email.
Sometimes, a person will use the "spam" or "abuse" button instead of "unsubscribe." In either case, though, he or she does not want to hear from you in the email channel.
Gmail users can add contacts to their "safe sender" or contact list, as well as report your email as "spam" or "phishing." These types of controls exist in one form or another in all email clients.
In addition to email client controls, most email service providers (ESPs)- including BombBomb - provide unsubscribe and spam controls inside the email, as well. Here's what the footer of a BombBomb email includes.
When one of your recipients clicks any of the spam- or abuse-related buttons, we tally that. Our limit for acceptable abuse complaints is 1 per 1,000 emails sent (0.1%). This is an industry standard that holds across all reputable ESPs.
Invalid or "Bounced" Email Addresses
If there are a large amount of invalid or "bounced" emails from a send, this will also trigger an abuse report. This is 5% invalid emails with sends of over 1000 emails.
What Are The Consequences?
Spam and abuse complaints hurt both your reputation and ours.
They can damage the reputation of your website address (URL); you may get blacklisted by the email clients you need to reach your recipients (Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, Verizon, Comcast, etc).
Your spam complaints also inhibit our ability to serve the rest of our customers; this is something we can't tolerate, so we've written these limits into our terms of service to which you've agreed.
If you remain in excess of the 0.1% abuse complaint threshold, we may close your account with no refund with no notice at any time.
Again: we may close your account.
What Can You Do?
Your strategy has to be forward-looking because, unfortunately, there's not much that can be done with those that have already reported abuse.
Start by looking into your account. If you have a pop-up warning, this number represents the total number of reported abuses in the last 30 days (keep in mind that one contact could report abuse multiple times if many emails were sent to them and they reported abuse on each one). From the "Lists" tab, click on "All contacts" and then "Abused." When you look at this list, take a moment to look for trends that might give you insight. For example:
Did these contacts originate from the same source?
Did these complaints come from the same email?
Are any of these contacts from the same group, company, family, or list?
Stop sending to people to whom you do not have explicit permission to send.
Do not send to purchased or leased email lists. It's against our terms of service and often results in excessive spam complaints because the people on these lists have no reasonable expectation of hearing from you.
Clean up your lists. Remove old addresses to which you've not recently sent. Remove people who have not explicitly given you permission to send.
Start fresh. Some of our customers who found themselves in your position decided to start building a permission-based email marketing list with custom forms and other tools.
BombBomb includes an "unsubscribe" link in the pre-header of every email you send. You may also want to add a line near the top of the body of your email along the lines of: "You're receiving this email because (reason). If you'd no longer like to receive emails like these, hit reply and let us know."
Try the "If I Picked Up the Phone" exercise: if you picked up the phone and called each person on your email list and gave them your name, your business or organization name, your position or title, and the person's relationship with your business or organization, would it "ring a bell?" Would it connect? Would they know who you are and why you're calling? If not, they should not be on your email list.
Links To Learn More
href="http://fightspam.gc.ca/eic/site/030.nsf/eng/home">Canada's Anti-Spam Laws
"http://www.marketingprofs.com/charts/2012/7944/us-companies-unprepared-for-canadas-new-anti-spam-act">Most US Companies Unprepared for Canada's New Anti-Spam Act