“…using the same web and email server is one of the factors that your email get blacklisted….”
Being blacklisted is a serious problem for businesses alike as there will be detrimental effects on your overall business. It is important to take steps to prevent blacklisting by following best practices for email sending and monitoring your email deliverability metrics regularly.
If you do experience blacklisting, it is important to act quickly to resolve the issue and minimize the impact on your operations. Hence, in this article, we will discuss the factors that cause blacklisting, and what you can do to remove it.
What is Email Blacklisting?
Email blacklisting is basically a list that filters out domains and IP addresses that are deemed as “spam”. Now we are aware that there are different definitions of spam, and to some, they are malicious emails that are trying to inject malware into your computer and to most, they are any promotional emails that they didn’t sign up for.
How Email Blacklisting Works
Basically, after sending your email, an Internet Service Provider (ISP) receives it and determines whether it appears to be valid or legitimate. The email IP address is then checked against the ISP’s blacklist if one is in use. It then passes via the ISP’s spam filters to look for anything that is prohibited. The email is then delivered to the inbox if it passes these checks.
Just think of it as a roadblock, where the police will ask questions and check if you have done any suspicious activities!
A blacklist is only one of the resources used to determine whether an email is authentic or not; the actual rejection of an email will depend on the ISP’s policies.
Possible Factors that Cause Email Blacklisting
All it takes for an IP address to be placed on a blacklist is just as simple as a large number of spam complaints and questionable email lists. Email blacklisting can result from the following factors:
1) Using the same web and email server
This scenario happens when your Internet Service Provider (ISP) combines your web server and email server in hopes to save costs on hardware, bandwidth and electricity.
This is bad for your business because when your website is injected with malware, the infected web will be used as a medium for spamming emails. As a result, your email IP address will be blocked and it directly affects your web domain too.
The consequences of this would be nasty if your business relies on online communications such as emails. To learn more about why you should keep your email and hosting separate, read here.
2) Sharing IP address
This is somewhat similar to the case above, but the only difference is that some email providers use shared IP addresses for all of their users (shared hosting). If another user on the same IP address as you engages in spamming or other abusive behaviour, it could lead to the entire IP address being blacklisted. In other words, you die, I die, and everybody dies together!
3) Receiving too many spam complaints
ISPs may believe your email’s content or list management practises are poor if recipients of your email click the “Spam” button. This can also happen to opt-in-only lists, but it’s still considered a spam complaint. An IP address’s likelihood of being on a blacklist increases with the number of complaints.
4) A drastic increase in outgoing emails
The volume of emails sent from a domain is taken into account by the internet and email service providers. Spam filters and other service providers may link your email behaviour with that of a spammer if you send too many emails. For instance, Gmail only allows regular accounts a limit of 500 inbound emails in 24 hours.
When an inbound message bounces, a catch-all error message known as a 550 Spam Error is sent back to the user to let them know why the message was rejected.
You receive the specific error message “550: High probability of spam” when you try to send an outbound email to another mail server and it rejects it outright because it flags your message as spam.
5) Using keywords that trigger spam
There are some keywords in email marketing that, when used in the copy, will be labelled as spam. This typically depends on the email provider’s spam policies. Generally, these keywords tend to be promotional in form or connected to misleading and unethical demands and promises. So be extra careful when creating the copy for your emails.
Consequences of a Blacklisted Email IP Address
1) Email delivery failure
Once your IP address or domain has been blacklisted, your emails may be rejected or filtered out by the email servers of the recipient, resulting in non-delivery. This can lead to missed opportunities, delayed communications, and potential loss of business.
2) Reduced email deliverability
Even after you have resolved the issue that led to blacklisting, your emails may continue to be marked as spam or filtered out by email providers. This can result in lower email deliverability rates, which can impact your ability to communicate effectively with your audience.
3) Damage to reputation
Email blacklisting can damage your reputation as a sender, as it suggests that you may engage in spamming or other abusive email practices. This can undermine the trust and credibility you have built with your customers or business partners.
How to Delist My Domain from An Email Blacklist?
Naturally, you must remove yourself from the IP blacklist if you do find yourself on it.
Asking “Why is my domain blacklisted?” and figuring out what happened to get you blacklisted are the initial steps towards de-blacklisting. For instance, it’s possible that you’re not passing DKIM or SPF authentication, which causes your emails to appear suspicious.
The next step is to request removal from the website that keeps you on a blacklist. If you haven’t already fixed your email deliverability issues, some blacklists offer a self-service removal tool, while others need you to go through a removal process.
Read on for a more detailed step-by-step guide on how to de-blacklist your email now.
How to Avoid Future Email Blacklists?
Now that you have all the resources to understand email blacklisting and how to delist your domain, here are some additional tips on how to avoid getting blacklisted AGAIN in the future. You can also learn how to do a blacklist check here.
1) Engage with enterprise-focused email hosting services
Not to toot our own horn, but TheGigabit is an enterprised-focused email hosting provider that has years of experience in providing email hosting services to businesses from various industries. So, feel free to check out our enterprise email hosting with SmarterMail here.
2) Authenticate your emails
Use email authentication protocols, such as SPF, DKIM, and DMARC, to help email providers verify the authenticity of your emails and reduce the likelihood of them being marked as spam.
3) Check that your email security measures are in place
To protect your email server from bots or viruses that could steal your IP address and email domain, check for the necessary security precautions and utilise tools to check IP addresses. Implementing and maintaining email server security protocols will help you avoid malware infestations and subsequent blacklisting of your company.
Enterprise Email Hosting Done Right
Getting your email IP address blacklisted can be really frustrating as it might affect your business deals, restrict reaching new leads and prospects and disrupt day-to-day business processes. With TheGigabit’s enterprise email hosting, you can rest assured that your business can enjoy:
- A secured email server so that your email or domain gets protection against malware injection
- Outbound spam protection to maintain the integrity of your mail server
- Protects mail servers from being blacklisted for spam
For more information on email hosting, please visit https://thegigabit.com/email/smartermail-enterprise-email/.