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Now that Gmail’s new inbox is placing everyone’s email on any old tab except the Primary one, we thought it was high time to revisit the classic practice of encouraging subscribers to whitelist your campaigns. By actively asking to have your sender details added to the address book, contacts, or “Safe Senders List”, you can up your chances of landing straight in the inbox, being seen and in some cases, have images display by default.

Adding a short whitelisting message to your email content is far from a new idea, however it hasn’t lost its lustre – there is merit to actively having your email marked as important, especially in webmail clients. With Gmail in particular assessing the actions of your subscribers as part of their email filtering process, having your emails repeatedly moved to the Primary tab, or having images downloaded by default sends a strong message that your campaigns are indeed valuable.

A step-by-step guide for your subscribers

The most common approach to nudging subscribers into adding your “From” name and email address to their address book (or similar) is to have a friendly prompt, similar to the following:

To keep receiving emails from us, please add us to your address book.

Linking to a short whitelisting walkthrough featuring a variety of email clients is especially beneficial for less email-savvy subscribers – there may even be some that don’t know it’s possible to shift messages between tabs in Gmail! So, for both the benefit of senders and recipients alike, we’ve created visual instructions for the most popular email clients, which you are more than welcome to link to from your email campaigns. They’re as up-to-date as they get and we’ll be aiming to keep them refreshed as email clients change.

Get wise by skimming our other guides

Our whitelisting instructions are the latest addition to our extensive library of guides and resources on our site, covering topics from responsive email, to reporting. If you’re particularly interested in other tactics you can use to stay out of the spam folder, we can highly recommend reading our Guide to Landing in the Inbox, for starters.

Finally, I hope you find these whitelisting instructions to be useful – we’ve had a few requests for a step-by-step docs like this, so hopefully they fit the bill. Of course, if you have any suggestions for any other resources that you, or your subscribers would find to be useful, be sure to let us know in the comments below.

  • Simon

    Will a white label version be available that we can include in our customers templates?

  • Matt

    Yes it would be much better if there was less content around this, there is to much distraction, people want to know this information quickly.

    It would also be useful if we could include links in the footer so we could have this in the footer of every email.

  • Ros Hodgekiss

    Simon – Good call, we considered this, but wanted to see what kind of demand there was first before focusing on a white-label version. One of the catches is that we’d have to host it on a separate domain to maintain the white-labelness of it – not a huge deal, but something for us to think about. Any which way, we’ll keep you posted if this is something we do :)

    Matt – Thanks for your feedback here – we might consider redesigning this guide to make it easier to find instructions for specific clients. The good news is that we are looking at making significant changes to our templates in the months ahead, so we’ll keep you posted if we provide a more flexible template for you to use :)

This blog provides general information and discussion about email marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.
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