Your emails may be properly optimized with appealing graphics and compelling content but if they don't make it to your customers' inboxes then all your efforts will be for nothing. This is why you must become a safe sender in the eyes of your customer and one way you can achieve this is through email whitelisting.
In this article, we'll explain what email whitelisting is and how to whitelist an email for better email deliverability.
We'll also share some best practices you can apply for email whitelisting.
Table of contents
- What is an email whitelist?
- Why email whitelisting is essential for your business
- How to get on your customers' whitelist
- Best practices for email whitelisting
- Wrapping up
What is an email whitelist?
An email whitelist is a database of the email addresses that have been approved by your customers. When your customers add your email address to their Whitelist, they are giving the signal that they trust your brand and are willing to receive more messages from you.
As a result, your emails are sent to your customers' inboxes without landing in the spam folder. If you want to ensure that your customers constantly receive your emails then you need to add email whitelisting as part of your email marketing strategy.
Why email whitelisting is important for your business
If you want your emails to get more engagement, you must urge your customers to whitelist you. Here are some reasons why this is necessary for your brand:
- Sometimes customers miss emails from their favorite brands simply because they didn't add them to their whitelist. Email whitelisting will help to prevent this from happening.
- Getting whitelisted reduces the chances of your emails getting wrongly flagged as spam or junk mail.
The idea is that you should never miss the chance to ask your customers to whitelist you - whether in your welcome emails, upgrade emails, or promotional emails.
How to get on your customers' whitelist
When it comes to asking customers to whitelist you, consider using clear and simple language that passes the idea of your message.
For example: "To ensure that our emails always make it to your inbox, please add us to your email whitelist."
It's important to include this message in the first email that you send to new subscribers. This will help kickstart your relationship on a solid basis. You can also include this message in the emails that you send to customers that have stopped engaging with your emails.
For instance, Yokel Local does this well in their re-engagement campaign aimed at reconnecting with customers who may not be opening their emails:
While sending a request for email whitelisting, ensure that you consider the email clients your recipients use, which could be Gmail, Yahoo, Outlook, Apple Mail, or more.
It's important to note that some customers may not know what email whitelisting is. So, you need to include actionable content that will throw light on how to blacklist an email.
Here are the instructions for email whitelisting:
Whitelisting an Email in Outlook
To whitelist an email address in Microsoft Outlook, the customer has to add the address to the safe senders' lists.
This will ensure that messages from the sender are not affected by spam filters and are delivered without fail to their inboxes. Here are the steps to whitelist an email in Outlook.
- Sign in to Outlook’s web version and click the settings (gear icon) button in the top-right corner.
- When you click, a drop-down menu will appear on your screen. Click the last option on the menu, it will lead you to the expanded settings page.
- On the page, you'll see different options like "general," "mail," "people, " and more. Click "mail" and it will open up a sub-menu where you can click the "junk menu" option.
- When you click, the junk menu will display two options—“Safe senders and domains” and “Safe mailing lists .” These options will further display an "add" button
- Click the button and enter the email addresses you wish to whitelist. Then click on the save button at the top.
Whitelisting an Email in Yahoo desktop Mail
Here are the steps to whitelist an email in Yahoo mail:
- In the Yahoo Mail window, navigate to the settings option and click it. Then select “More Settings” from the options that appear.
- On the page, you'll find more options like notifications and mailboxes, and filters. Click on the filters button
- In the filters window, you will spot the “Add filters” option. Click it and enter the sender address or the domain name you want to whitelist
Email whitelisting In Yahoo Mail Mobile App:
- Launch the app and tap on the sidebar.
- Navigate to the spam folder and open the message you want to whitelist.
- Tap on “Move” and then on “Inbox.”
Email whitelisting in Gmail mobile app
Here are the steps below:
- Go to the junk or spam folder
- Tap to open the email which you think has accidentally landed in there.
- When you click on it, you'll see a “Why is this message in spam?” dialog box at the top of the email. At the bottom of the dialog box, there will be a “Report not spam” button.
- Tap on that button; once you do so, all future emails from this sender will be delivered directly to your inbox.
Whitelisting an email on Gmail desktop
The following steps illustrate how to whitelist an email in Gmail.
- When you open your Gmail inbox, click on the gear icon on the top right corner of your screen. A drop-down menu will appear, click on it and it will lead you to the expanded settings page.
- On this page, you need to navigate to the “Filters and Blocked Addresses” tab. Click on it once you locate it
- It will take you to a new page where you can create filters for whitelisting an email
- Upon doing this, a dialog box will appear on your screen. In the “From” field, you can whitelist a specific sender by entering their email address
- Once you have entered the email address, you’ll notice the “Create filter” button at the bottom of the dialog box coming to life.
- When you click it, another window will appear on your screen. Here you’ll see multiple checkboxes such as “Mark as read,” “Star it,” “Forward it,” “Never send it to spam,” “Always mark it as important,” and many others. Tick the “Never send it to spam” box. This will make sure that none of the emails coming from the address or domain you specified in the previous step end up in your spam folder
Best practices for email whitelisting
Now that we've covered the basics of email whitelisting. Let us go through the best practices for email whitelisting.
1. Improve your value proposition
Your subscribers may never whitelist you if you don't give them enough reason to do so. One way you can entice them is by sharing valuable content that will benefit your customers.
By doing this, you'll not only increase the chances of getting whitelisted but also boost your email engagement and conversions.
2. Segment your email list
Sending a personalized email is key to gaining your customers' attention. An email that is relevant and targeted will most likely compel a customer to whitelist you than a random untargeted email.
To get your personalization accurate, you need to segment your email list. Email segmentation involves dividing your customer base into different sections based on various parameters such as age, gender, occupation, location, likes and preferences, past purchases, browsing history, and stage in the sales funnel.
By doing this, you'll understand your customers better including their goals, needs, and struggles. This will also arm you with sufficient information to craft personalized emails that will gain your customer's attention and make them look forward to receiving more of your emails.
3. Don't take too long to ask customers to whitelist you
It may seem like a big deal to ask customers to whitelist you. Well, it actually is but it doesn't mean that you have to think twice about it.
Think about this—your customers receive a lot of emails from several brands on a daily basis and it's a tough task to keep track of all the brands that a customer subscribes to.
Scott's cheap flights show an example of asking customers to be whitelisted:
So, you'd be doing your customer a favor when you remind them to add you to their address book or approved senders list.
Email whitelisting is an important step in your email marketing efforts that improves your email deliverability. It also ensures that you create a long-term relationship with your customers.
Use the instructions and best practices above to guide you as you take critical steps to whitelist your email address.
At Engage, you can send pre-built email sequences to your customers.