How To Check Email Validity: Best Practices
Email marketing plays a big role in digital marketing. Newsletters help businesses to stay in touch with their clients, inform them about product launches, upcoming events, important updates, etc. Keeping in touch with clients is a valuable form of marketing as it allows businesses to stay relevant on the market and build good customer relationships. Emails are also a relatively easy way to reach a wider target audience and promote your services. They can help you not only keep in touch with existing clients but reach new clients as well.
However, for the email marketing to succeed, the marketing team should not forget about the importance of email deliverability. After all, an undelivered message means a lost opportunity to reach a potential client. In order to make sure the email deliverability stays high, successful marketers need to be familiar with the best practices for checking email address validity.
Why it’s important to check email validity
Without the proper email address validity, businesses cannot make sure their emails are actually delivered. If you send an email and it gets marked as spam, your intended recipient might never bother to open and read your message or might not even notice your email at all. That’s how you fail to reach the target client and lose on a potential sale, which will directly affect your profits. If a message fails to be sent completely, it is called email bouncing. When the message bounces back to the sender it may mean that:
- the email address doesn’t exist,
- the email server is not available (due to temporary crash or maintenance work),
- your contact’s mailbox is full,
- or your email address has been blocked.
If your email bounce rate is high, it has a negative impact on your email deliverability rates and can ruin your email sender reputation.
What is email sender reputation
Email sender reputation is estimated by a score assigned by an Internet Service Provider (ISP) to a sending IP address. ISPs measure this score using a variety of criteria, such as:
- quality of contacts (email recipients),
- level of engagement from said recipients (how they react to your messages: do they read your content and/or forward it to their family and friends or do they unsubscribe from your emails, or maybe even block you?),
- content quality,
- the amount of emails being sent,
- being included on a blacklist
Poor email sender reputation means your emails will most likely be considered as spam and the open rates will decrease significantly. If you notice a change in the pattern of your emails being delivered and/or open, you should consider that your email sender reputation has declined and it’s high time to consider solutions like an email validity checker.
How to check email validity
There are a few methods that will help you test and improve email validity and they provide the best results when implemented all together:
Double opt-in method
The most popular technique used by companies to test email validity is probably double opt-in. When a user registers with their email account, a unique link is sent to said account and the user is asked to click on it to confirm the registration process. This double level process allows you not only to eliminate invalid email addresses but it also helps to prevent situations where a user can register with an email address that does exist, but does not belong to the given user. This means that only users who really wish to receive emails from you will actually get them. The double opt-in technique also prevents spam users from registering with fake accounts. However, it’s important to note that the double opt-in cannot verify the actual deliverability of emails – if a visitor has already left the website before you find out that the email address is invalid there is no chance to re-connect.
Double typing/re-typo method
It might be a little tiresome for Internet users to double type their email address every time they need to register somewhere but it is a very effective way to ensure they type their email correctly. Double typing allows users to avoid typos or syntax mistakes. Creating registration forms that require users to repeat their emails is also a simple process that doesn’t consume too much time. However, just like with a double opt-in, this technique doesn’t ensure email deliverability. Another issue concerning this solution is that spam users can still provide you with an email that they don’t own.
Email verification services
The easiest and most reliable solution for email validation is turning to email validation providers who will bulk check email address validity for you. Real time email verification services include:
- syntax verification,
- domain name validation (DNS),
- mail exchanger records (MX records) check,
- disposable email address detection (such disposable email accounts are created by spammers),
- misspelled domain detection, which prevents typosquatting, or URL hijacking (when a user accidentally misspells a website address and is directed to a domain owned by hackers who might be involved in phishing schemes, or to a domain which can install malware on the user’s computer),
- greylisting detection (greylisting is an anti-spam activity: the MTA – mail transfer agent- temporarily rejects messages from unrecognized senders),
- checking if a given mailbox exists,
- SMTP connection and availability checking,
- catch-all testing (a catch-all email account will receive all messages that are addressed to an incorrect email address for a domain)
- spam trap (email addresses used only to collect spam) detection
Why use email validity checker
Email validation services allow you to clean up your existing email lists, which may include fake or outdated emails, disposable email addresses, or emails whose owners have blocked and blacklisted your messages. Such items on your list decrease open rates, increase email bouncing and ruin your email sender reputation. This means your content will be more likely to be treated as spam and less likely to reach valuable target audience.
Nowadays successful marketing is all about improving client satisfaction, which includes maintaining good relations with clients, which are based on trust and keeping the clients informed. Poor sender reputation may keep you from reaching potential new clients and discourage your existing clients from contacting you.
Email address validators will help you create effective registration forms and make sure your message is delivered to the intended recipient.