Update: Improved spam complaint integration

By David Greiner on 2nd June 2006

We've just launched our completed integration into the Microsoft Junk Mail Reporting System. This means that you can now keep track of anyone who flags your campaigns as spam across all Hotmail and MSN accounts.

Whenever you receive a spam complaint, that recipient is instantly removed from your list and we provide you with a detailed report on who made the complaint and when.

Just like the existing AOL spam complaint integration, we're also using this data to monitor complaints for all our customers to make sure everyone is sticking to best practice. If one of you guys is getting complaints greater than 1 in every 5,000 emails, you'll more than likely be hearing from us.

Having said that, we certainly understand (as do most ISP's) that some of your recipients may forget opting in to your list and occasionally mark an email as spam instead of just unsubscribing. At any rate, here are a few tips to follow to reduce the chances of an unjustified spam complaint:

  • Using our double opt-in subscribe process to ensure a high quality subscriber list.
  • Inform your recipients why they are receiving each email and how you obtained their details in a clear location at the top of each email.
  • Including our single-click unsubscribe link in an obvious, prominent position.

We've got a few other features we plan on adding to our spam reporting soon that should certainly please our bigger senders. We'll announce them here as soon as they're live.

4 Comments

  • Alex C
    31st October

    Are there any plans to add a spam checking tool to evaluate whether an email is likely to be marked as spam by filters? I have seen other email systems with this feature and this would be an extremely useful addition. In fact probably more useful for our clients who use MailBuild as they are less aware of spam filters and what you need to do to avoid them, and as a result not all their emails always get through at present.

  • Dave Greiner
    31st October

    Alex, this is something we’ve considered before, and if there’s significant demand we’ll certainly integrate it into both apps. I agree this may be a good addition to MailBuild moving forward.

  • Rob Schlein
    17th April

    1 in 5000?  I read an article that says AOL suggests keeping complaints from 1-3%.  Now THAT seems reasonable.

  • Dave Greiner
    17th April

    Rob, I’ve read the same recommendations too, here’s a quick quote…

    AOL recommends keeping spam complaints below 1-3 percent of traffic, depending on volume. This figure is unique to AOL’s user base; it’s too generous when applied as a general standard. Be at or below the range of one complaint per 6,000 to 8,000 messages, or 0.013 percent.

    We certainly realize some spam complaints are false positives by lazy subscribers or those that might not trust the unsubscribe mechanism, but our internal limits are more than generous enough to cater for these. Also, the complaint rate is based on complaints from the total recipients, not just AOL or Hotmail recipients.

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