If you send bulk marketing emails through Outlook, you’re taking a risk. Eventually, this could get you blacklisted – and effect your entire organization’s ability to communicate via email.
If you send bulk emails through Outlook, the Internet’s mail servers could decide that you’re spamming. And if they decide that, they can block your ability to send emails through the IP address you’re using, which can impact your whole company.
This is why email platforms like Outlook have limits to the number of emails you can send. The platforms could, technically, handle higher-volume send rates – but they don’t want to, because they want to cut down on spam.
What is a Blacklist?
The “blacklist” is a list of server addresses considered to be untrustworthy, likely because they have been caught spamming. If your email activity gets you blacklisted, that means other email servers will block your organization’s emails – even non-marketing emails.
There are a number of email blacklists out there, and they communicate with each other. If you wind up on one, chances are high you’ll wind up on others within 24 hours.
How You Get Blacklisted
Here’s how an organization (even one that’s not a shady email spammer) can land themselves on an email blacklist.
- You send out a mass email to 1,000 people using Outlook.
- Many of these people have no idea who you are and weren’t expecting your email (a great reason why you should periodically audit your mailing list). They report your email as spam, so next time you send, your emails will be filtered to their spam folder automatically.
- The email ISPs keep a record of how many times people mark your emails as spam.
- Once this has happened enough, the ISPs will report the IP address for your organization’s mail server to a blacklist – or multiple blacklists.
- When your email arrives at a server, it automatically checks your IP against the blacklists. If it finds you on a blacklist, your email will be blocked.
How to Send Email Without Getting Blacklisted
That said, there are ways to send bulk emails without landing on a blacklist. The simplest way is to use a third-party professional email service provider, or ESP. These providers can send emails without getting on a blacklist, because they’re whitelisted.
Organizations such as Constant Contact, MailChimp, and iContact keep on top of ever-changing Internet privacy standards and legislation to ensure all of your emails are compliant.
It’s not difficult to stay off blacklists – simply use an email marketing provider that’s designed to send mass emails, and keep Outlook for personal and professional emails only. In our next article, we’ll discuss how to choose the best email marketing provider for your needs.
Sources and further reading
Intrigued? Check out our previous blog to find out why you shouldn’t use Gmail or Outlook for bulk emails.
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