How To Avoid Sending Spam Email in Gmail

When you’re sending multiple emails at once in Gmail, there are many reasons that Gmail may classify your emails as spam. MergeMail sends emails directly from your Gmail account, which typically has better deliverability and a lower chance of being classified as spam than high-volume email marketing tools do. However, Gmail can still potentially classify your emails as spam if you’re not using best practices.

If Gmail detects that a Gmail account is sending what it believes is a lot of spam, it may temporarily classify many of the emails sent from that account as spam. If you send emails that it does not classify as spam, then this should stop over time. MergeMail doesn’t reformat the emails you’re sending in any way, so if Gmail is classifying them as spam, then the issue is related to the nature of the emails and not related to how MergeMail is sending them.

Here are some tips to improve your email deliverability and to help you send emails that aren’t classified as spam.

Send emails to recipients who want your emails

If you send emails to recipients who don’t want your emails, they’re likely to manually mark your emails as spam or perform other actions that increase the chance of the emails being classified as spam. Instead, make sure that you’re sending to recipients who find your emails valuable and are likely to want to engage with them in a more positive way.

Don’t purchase email lists

If you purchase or rent an email list, it’s very likely that the recipients will not be expecting your emails and may likely not find them valuable or want them. As a result, they may mark them as spam or take other actions that indicate to Gmail that they are spammy.

Make it easy for recipients to unsubscribe

By including an unsubscribe link, you make it easy for recipients to unsubscribe if they don’t want to receive your emails. If you don’t include an unsubscribe link, they will be more likely to mark your emails as spam or use other methods of blocking them. If you’re using MergeMail, you can add unsubscribe links by simply clicking a checkbox.

Don’t send multiple emails to unengaged recipients

If you repeatedly send emails to recipients who don’t engage with them, those recipients may eventually mark your emails as spam, or Gmail may detect that your emails are not perceived as valuable and thus may be spam. If you’re using MergeMail, you can use Account Reports to see which recipients are not engaging with your emails (e.g., aren’t opening or clicking your emails) and start to exclude them from your lists. This also has the additional benefit of gradually increasing your open and click rates over time, as you focus more on high-value, engaged recipients.

Don’t use spammy words and phrases

Your email’s subject line tells the recipient a lot about your email, and it’s especially important to write subject lines that don’t sound like spam. In general, if a word or phrase sounds like something that could be used for high-volume spam, then you should avoid using it. Some examples include “free”, “incredible”, and “guarantee”, but there are dozens of others.

It’s better to use creative subject lines that engage the recipient without making them think that your email may be spam. You should also avoid using lots of exclamation points and avoid using all caps, both of which have high correlation with spam.

Use spell check

Poor-quality spam emails often have misspelled words or incorrect grammar. Consequently, for your emails to avoid being perceived as spam, it’s important (and often easy!) to use spell check and grammar checking, both of which Gmail provides.

Use double opt-in

Double opt-in means that when someone subscribes to your list, you also send them an email to confirm that they want to receive email from you. When someone has performed a double opt-in, it means that they really do want to receive your emails, which means that they’re far less likely to mark your emails as spam.

Don’t suddenly start sending large volumes of emails

Low-quality spammers often use large, inorganic email lists, so sending a large volume of emails from an account that didn’t previously send large volumes often correlates with spam. Instead, you should start by sending small-volume campaigns and gradually increase the volume, continuously ensuring that the emails that you are sending are high-quality and not spammy.

Avoid including attachments

If attachments are used often, they can be a sign of spam. If you want to send a PDF or another similar file, it’s often preferable to include a link to download the PDF instead of attaching the PDF to your email. This has the additional benefit of saving storage space in your email account and in your recipients’ email accounts.

Avoid including videos, JavaScript, or Flash in your emails

Many email clients don’t support viewing or running videos, JavaScript, or Flash, and they can be a signal that an email is spammy. As a result, it’s best to avoid including them and instead focus on creating engaging textual content in your emails.

Don’t use too many images or very large images

Emails that have a large number of images or have very large images often correlate with spam, so avoiding this will help prevent your emails from being perceived as spammy. It’s better to focus on crafting high-value, engaging textual content, which may not be as easy, but often has a higher ROI in the long-term.