Email Validation: Why Accuracy Matters
You already know you should implement an email validation service to keep your customer contact database up to date. You've heard verification services can improve client reach and reduce the danger of damaging your sender reputation. But with so many different services and product options, where do you get started?
First, it's worth getting to know how email addresses go bad and what to do about it.
Problem: A client or customer service representative has mistyped an email address.
Solution: The error could be in the email username, the domain name or littered throughout the email address. If you try to send an email to “joh.nao.lcom,” the email will be undeliverable. One solution is a service that will scan through your database and simply eliminate these email addresses. Such a system is better than nothing — sending marketing messages to invalid addresses is a waste of time and money. But there is an even better solution. Some systems incorporate email correction capabilities to find these invalid email addresses and actually fix them. Smart verification software can repair the email address rendering it deliverable to your client. That means you don't lose an opportunity to reach the client because of a typographical error.
Problem: A client has changed email addresses.
Solution: Your customer or potential customer can change jobs, switch email providers or just decide to open a new email account. It happens all the time – and each time you run the risk of losing touch with a contact. A client email address change typically means one of two things: Your carefully crafted offers and messages could arrive in an inbox that's inactive, or they could bounce as undeliverable. Like with other undeliverable addresses, some services will simply purge old addresses flagged as bounced or inactive. But the better solution is a service that finds your customer's new contact information and attempts to reconnect with them. An Email Change of Address (ECOA) service will match your list against an opt-in email database to find your client's new address.
Problem: You have bogus email addresses in your database.
Solution: It looks like a duck. It sounds like a duck. But this email address is most definitely a goose. Bogus emails can appear in a variety of ways: An address with a fake domain name, a fake username with a legitimate domain name, a suspicious use of a well-known address like firstname.lastname@example.org. Some email validation services will simply be fooled by these addresses and allow website visitors to bypass your forms and insert bogus emails in your database. Smart systems, however, will zero in on these addresses for verification. A quality service will be able to tell if a username is invalid, even if it's attached to a legitimate domain name like yahoo or hotmail. A good verification service will also be able to identify active but problematic usernames, domains or email addresses you want to eliminate from your database.
Contact AtData to find out how quality email validation services can help you hang on to customer contact information and clean up your email marketing database.