Some Email Industry BS We Should All Be Wise to by Now
Quick! Which email service provider has the best delivery rate?
Don’t know? Neither do I. Let’s try and find an answer.
According to a list put out by ranking firm topseos, Pinpointe On-Demand—as topseos referred to it—has the best delivery rate of 10 email service providers it ranked for January.
The company name is actually just Pinpointe, but let’s not quibble.
No, let’s just cut to the real problem with Topseos’ rankings list—that it mentioned ESPs’ so-called “delivery rates” at all.
ESPs don’t have delivery rates. Or they shouldn’t anyway.
Why? Because every major lever that affects whether email gets delivered to people’s email boxes is under the list owner’s control.
Email inbox providers’ spam filters have traditionally relied on three major metrics to determine whether or not email coming from a specific sender is spam: the number of spam complaints, the number of bad addresses a mailer tries to reach and the number of spam traps they hit.
And these days, ISPs are reportedly increasingly looking at engagement metrics—clicks and opens, for example, or lack thereof—to weed out unwanted mail.
All of the above-mentioned metrics are directly attributable to the sender’s behavior, not the ESPs’.
Yet, some email service providers tout their so-called delivery rates in their sales pitches.
For example, Constant Contact claims its delivery rate is 97 percent. But when one reads why its delivery rate is so high, it becomes clear
“We hold our customers to high standards with good email marketing habits and practices,” says a headline on the page touting Constant Contact’s delivery rate.
There is nothing wrong with Constant Contact touting high standards.
And this isn’t to say an ESP has nothing at its disposal that can affect delivery rates. For example, an ESP can affect deliverability by throttling-or sending the messages at a slower rate—so ISPs are less likely to block them.