Reasons Why Your Emails Go to Spam

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By Vinay Khatri

According to the research done by Demand Metric, it has found that email marketing is one of the best ways to promote your products and/or services and connect with your customers. Email marketing has a median ROI of 122 percent, which is basically four times more than any other marketing format (source). Even a direct ad on google’s search engine result page doesn’t produce as many sales as a good email campaign. So, we have to say that email marketing is quite essential for any marketer to generate leads and drive more sales.

But now, let’s take a moment and flip the coin to talk about the other side of email marketing. There’s a black hole in the world of email marketing, and that black hole is called a “spam folder.” A spam folder is a place where all the not so likable emails go.

An email that has been flagged by the mailing system directly goes into the spam, and the receiver of the mail doesn’t even see it in their inbox. Return’s Path 2017 deliverability benchmark showed us a shocking result about the emails. According to the results shown, more than 20% of all commercial emails directly go into the spam folder, and the user never actually opens it.

Today we are going to discuss the various reasons for emails to go into the spam folder along with different ways that email marketers can follow to ensure that their emails are delivered to the receiver’s inbox.

The Problem of Spam Emails

Let’s be honest and ask yourself, what was the last time you checked the spam folder in your email inbox? Well, the answer might not have come to your mind because it’s been a while. The same situation is with most of us. It’s quite uncommon for users to check their spam folder to see if there’s any important mail dumped there.

A spam folder was created to make sure that users only get important emails in their inboxes. Usually, spam folders are created both by the mail server and the user’s email program.

There are two defining characteristics of a spam email:

  • Recipients have not agreed to get these emails
  • The emails are sent in bulk or to the masses

For a lot of marketers sending bulk emails to customers is an easy job and costs less than sending customized emails. However, bulk emails come with a greater risk of being marked as spam, and for recipients, spam is just a junk email.

Most of the unsolicited commercial emails fall under the category of spam, but the term encompasses other types of mailing masses like chain letters, personal campaign mailings, and messages with virus-laden attachments.

How Does a Spam Email Change a Recipient Behavior?

Just think of yourself what you do when you receive a spam email yourself? People usually don’t take any action on such emails and don’t even bother to open them in the first place. Usually, a particular email or all the emails of a specific sender are marked spam by the email service provider. However, in some cases, users also mark certain emails as spam because they are irrelevant to the user and are thus annoying. Also, some people will go to that extent to make sure that the email server knows this is spam and mark the Email for further investigation.

As a whole, a spam email will not make a recipient happy, and a spam email can be considered to be any email that doesn’t have the required information that the recipient is looking for. On the other hand, a lot of people have now maintained a throwaway email account specifically to keep the online sign-ups separated from the personal email.

Importance of Sending Emails as a Marketer

Any business wants to grow its reach and expand its customer base. Email is the best way to attain these two goals. However, in addition to these benefits, email marketing could be of more importance to a marketer. Given below, we have described how email marketing is helpful for marketers and what they can achieve using this marketing technique:

1. More Effective than Social Media

Social media is a place where you will get tons of audiences who may be looking for your product. But in order to find that audience, you need to work hard and at the same time need to invest significantly. Also, on social media, the chances of hit and miss are pretty high as compared to the emails. This is because, in email marketing, you know the target audience and their interest. You can customize the email in such a way that it makes them feel special and persuades them to view your products.

2. Keep in Touch with Your Audience 

You want to make sure that your new product launch is successful? Then, you need to send an email notifying your customers about the latest product that you are offering. Also, some marketers promote the new model of a product that is already owned by customers and make it easy for them to decide whether they should upgrade or not.

Additionally, email is the easiest way for a marketer to stay in touch with customers. For example, if a festival is just around the corner, marketers can send customers an email describing the offers and the sale benefits offered during the festive period. For news, sports, and other websites, a weekly mail will help users know about the top stories. If they do want to learn a bit more about the stories, they can click on the link given in the mail and it will redirect them to the blog page.

3. Target Mobile Users Effectively 

According to the research done by Litmus, 54% of all emails are opened on mobile phones (source). This is quite important and should be kept in mind when creating an email marketing strategy. More users are connecting to the internet via mobile phones than laptops or desktops. A well-designed email that is optimized for mobile viewing will have a higher conversion rate than any other medium.

4. High Customer Engagement with Emails 

For almost 40 years, emails have been the communication of the internet. As we are stepping in 2022, emails have now become the first choice of communication to convey a message formally. We all have studied how to reply to a professional email in some fashion. Moreover, even students now have the knowledge of what to do with the emails. No matter what the mail is about, if the email is interesting, users will engage with it. This is a significant advantage for marketers who are looking to grab customers’ attention. In 2020, more than 25% of online sales were done through email marketing.

5. Email Marketing Stats are Easy to Measure

Most of the email marketing tools come with the ability to track down what happened to the mail that you have sent to customers. You can track email delivery rates, bounce rates, unsubscribe rates, open rates, and click-through rates. This will make it easy to assess how good an email marketing campaign is and also provides all the necessary information required to modify the campaign strategy to get the best of the click-through rate.

With the use of email marketing stats, you will be able to identify customer behaviors and create effective campaigns accordingly.

7. Emails are Affordable

You can reach a large number of potential customers for probably less than a penny per email. The cost per conversion of email marketing is the lowest of all the other marketing campaigns. One of the great examples of this affordability is Mailchimp’s free version, which allows you to send 12,000 emails at no cost at all. It is a great idea to invest time and money in email marketing.

8. Targeted Messaging 

Your customer group could be in the different stages of the buying cycle. Some are looking for comparisons, while others are ready to make the purchase. As a marketer, it is your responsibility to work according to the buyer’s persona and provide them with relevant information that will help them in making the decision.

You need to segment customers based on the buying cycle stages they are in and create appropriate email marketing strategies to target them more efficiently. Your ultimate goal would be to persuade customers to go down to the end of the buying funnel and make the purchase.

Reasons for Emails to Go into Spam

Sometimes, even if you are a legitimate sender, your email could end up in the spam folder of the recipient. This is due to the fact that many high-level email servers have developed sophisticated anti-spam technologies, which makes it harder for a spammer to reach the inbox. In their pursuit of keeping spammers out of mailboxes, these servers end up marking several marketing emails as spam too. As a result, you might find your email being dumped in the spam folder. Given below are some of the most common reasons for your emails to go into the spam folder:

1. Didn’t Have Permission 

For some marketers, this will come as a surprise, but emails should only be sent to those people who have shared their email addresses in the first place. This is the most crucial principle that needs to be followed when running an email marketing campaign. It will help you increase the deliverability of your emails. Also, it is best that you steer clear from the bulk purchase of unreliable email lists as it could easily ruin your reputation as an email sender.


We are sure you have seen a prompt that pops up when you open most websites that say, “enter your email to get notified at the earliest.” Well, this is the best way for making your website visitors sign up for your emails. Also, this will give you the emails of the recipients who are actually interested in your business. No matter how slow the task of building this emailing list will be, it is undoubtedly going to be rewarding in the end as these emails will help you to increase organic sales.

2. Receiving Negative Engagement

Some marketers will not agree with this point, but there exists a negative engagement. When a person opens up your email and goes through the content or even clicks on the link which is present in the email, that’s a positive engagement. But at the same time, if the recipient doesn’t open your emails at all and the stack of other mails pushes it down the line, it can be considered as negative engagement and may even lead your emails to be marked as spam.


To enhance the positive engagement of your emails, you need to make sure that the content within your emails is personalized for the customer. A generic mail doesn’t please anyone. However, if you add some personal touch to an email, then the chances of the recipient opening it will increase significantly.

3. Bad IP Reputation 

When you sign up on different email listing websites, you will be assigned an IP address from which you will be sending your emails. Most of these IP addresses are shared, and in some cases, these IP addresses already carry a bad reputation, which will affect your marketing campaigns. You can carefully eradicate this flaw by using a reputable emailing platform like Mailchimp, SocketLabs, etc.


A reputed emailing platform will make sure that its customers are assigned with a spammed IP. Also, these companies also take care of your mailing IP to be configured properly before you start sending emails from it. On the other hand, if you are sending more than 100,000 emails in a month, it is better to get in touch with your emailing platform and ask them to provide you with a dedicated IP address.

4. No Unsubscribe Link

It is necessary to have an unsubscribe link to your emails. This will help your customers to easily unsubscribe and stop receiving your emails. As a result, this will restrict your emails from stacking in the inbox of users who don’t want them. By not providing the unsubscribe option to users, it may trigger them to take a much more strict action such as to mark your email spam.


The only sensible solution is to provide your users with the unsubscribe button so they can easily stop getting your emails. Also, one more thing you can do is to ask users the reason for unsubscribing. The answers will give you a better picture of what went wrong and highlight the opportunities for improvement.

5. Bad Email Design

This is another key reason for your mails to land in the spam folder of recipients. If the text, pictures, and infographics added to the emails are pixelated, it will leave a negative impact on readers. A bad email template will make it difficult for recipients to perceive the information clearly. Thus, it is best to design sophisticated and straightforward email templates and check if they convey the right information in the best possible way.


You need to make sure that all your emails are mobile-friendly and highlight all the information clearly. Also, an email needs to have an excellent image-to-text ratio, so the recipient can read the text and view images easily. Don’t use spam trigger words like “dear friend,” “free,” “mega sales,” etc., and the text needs to be simple and easy to read. Avoid using jargon in your mail, even if it’s a formal business email.

Wrapping Up

We are quite sure that the tips mentioned above will help in avoiding the common reasons responsible for your emails to go to the spam folder. There are several things that you need to consider carefully while creating and managing email marketing campaigns. As email marketing strategies can do wonders for your business, it’s important to pay special attention to ensure that your emails do not land in the spam folder of users’ inboxes. Also, it’s important to keep yourself updated on the latest email marketing techniques so that you can reap maximum benefits from your campaigns.

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