Our recent Email Our Clients Report shows an email open rate of up to 30% higher than other leading email service providers in Australia.
Such excellent results stem from our constant improvements in email deliverability, where we ensure that our clients’ legitimate emails actually reach the intended recipient’s inbox in the first place, without any cyberattacks such as spoofing, phishing, or spamming. This feat is easier said than done, as more than 78% of companies reported email deliverability challenges.
So what does it take to achieve outstanding email deliverability? Crafting aesthetic and enticing content is one thing, but you’ll also need to ensure that your emails are properly authenticated and secured through technical protocols such as DKIM, SPF, and DMARC. While this topic is briefly covered in our previous blog, here we take a deeper dive into the key elements, and how they lead to better email deliverability.
Construct the right DNS record settings
Though there are built-in authentications within established email providers, in Australia people still fall victim to cyber threats such as phishing and spoofing, and even the best email service cannot completely eliminate them.
However, the risks can be drastically reduced through proper domain name system (DNS) record settings. But before that, let’s understand the basics of DNS.
In terms of email, a DNS is a protocol that translates a domain name within an email address into a computer-specific language, also known as the internet protocol (IP) address, so that the email can be delivered to the recipient’s mail server.
Within the DNS system, various DNS types (or records) can be customised to construct additional functions other than merely “translating and delivering” human language to IP addresses. Selectively implementing records like DKIM, SPF and DMARC increases the authenticity of the email, thereby boosting the chances of email deliverability while reducing the likelihood of getting blacklisted by an internet service provider (ISP).
Include the correct SPF record
A Sender Policy Framework (SPF) is a type of DNS record that prevents cyber criminals from spoofing or phishing domain names within your mail server.
Publishing the correct SPF record into your DNS can be highly technical, and may require the assistance of an email marketing agency. But if done right, the SPF will allow recipients to effectively verify whether an incoming email is indeed from its legitimate sender’s email address, by way of authenticating IP addresses via the sender’s DNS.
Through this method, cyber criminals such as spammers are unable to reach the recipient’s email by impersonating the sender’s email domain via spoofing or phishing. Not only does this provide an added security measure for emails to be delivered, it also prevents the sender’s brand reputation from being tarnished.
The main drawback of SPF, however, is that even if SPF invalidates an email, it may still be delivered, as the final decision rests upon the recipient’s ISP. This is where DMARC comes into play.
Incorporate DMARC record
Many email marketing service providers use Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC) to ensure that their clients have an added layer of email security.
DMARC is a protocol within the DNS that allows you to customise an authentication policy, free from the recipient’s ISP, based on the results of SPF and Domainkeys Identified Mail (DKIM) – another email authentication tool that uses encryption.
In brief, a properly configured DMARC policy tells the recipient’s ISP what to do with emails that fail the authentication process of SPF and DKIM in one of two ways: either quarantine (telling recipients to place the email in the junk file) or reject the email.
Thus, DMARC is considered one of the best email marketing authentication strategies, as it allows you to track whether emails sent by your domain are authenticated via SPF and DKIM, and also allows you to manage them afterwards.
Set up a suitable return-path email address
Even with a good authentication system in place, emails can still fail to reach the recipient’s mail server. This is known as email bounce.
The reasons for email bounce may vary. The recipient's mailbox could be full, or the email could be marked as spam due to the overuse of email marketing templates via standard email marketing tools. In this case, a properly customised return-path email address allows for all bounced emails to return to a specific destination address. The sender will then be informed that the email did not go through.
More importantly, the return-path email address allows DMARC to parallel check between the sender and the return-path name to validate email authenticity, alongside SPF and DKIM.
Build your email marketing campaign with high deliverability
To increase your email open rate, email deliverability through authentication is key. Still, the learning curve for optimising email deliverability is considerably steep. By using PRODOCOM’s trusted Email Services in Australia, clients can flawlessly execute their email marketing campaigns, while we make sure that these emails are not spoofed, and are delivered safely to each client’s intended recipient.