Email marketing is a very popular communication channel on the Internet. Its conversion rate is the highest compared to other Internet marketing tools. According to the Marketing Insider Group, 59% of B2B marketers believe that email marketing is the most effective channel for increasing revenue.
Email marketing benefits are in direct quick communication with potential customers, relatively inexpensive implementation and delivery costs, automation, increased targeted action from subscribers, and growing loyalty to your brand. It had become especially effective since the beginning of the pandemic when the world went online, and many other marketing strategies (like vehicle advertising) began to reach fewer people.
But all these advantages will not matter if there are many non-existent or doubtful email or shipment addresses in the database. Therefore, an important step in any email marketing campaign is the verification of email addresses (another name for this process is email validation) first and shipment addresses validation right after the purchase to ensure the customers get their order.
Usually, email verification is done at the very beginning – when a new email has just been received. But in time, duplicates, incorrect addresses, broken emails, or undeliverable emails will appear in any database.
Therefore, it is important to keep your email database clean. Cleaning should be done at least once in 6 months, but it depends on the database's size. The larger the database, the more likely invalid addresses will appear in it, and the more often it is worth verifying. The same goes for address databases. Validating offline addresses every 6 months helps complete the delivery, verify customers’ identity, and make your communication efforts more accurate.
Let's look at the positive effects of email and shipment address verification below.
#1 Helps Avoid Spam Folders
Failure to prevent a domain and IP address from ending up on spam and blacklists will result in an inability to effectively use email marketing in the future.
Research by Experian (USA) found:
● over the past year, 61% of email marketing companies have experienced a threat to their mailing list sender reputation;
● 35% of these companies' newsletters ended up in spam.
There are many factors for an email being recognized as spam, including many links to various resources in the body of the email, but the fact that the mailing list database itself contains many questionable addresses is one of the main factors.
Exceeding the amount of invalid addresses and complaints leads to limiting the delivery of emails to the "Inbox" folder. If there are more than 5% errors in the mailing, the risks of getting into SPAM are very high. Letters can even be turned down by the mailbox. It is better to keep the index of getting into spam within 0,1%, but some mail services allow the value up to 0,3%.
#2 Confirms It Is a Real Address
Validation of emails in the database certifies that they really exist and are active, i.e., there is a user on the other side of the screen who will receive the email and will probably open and read it (although this guarantee is not available). In other words, it increases the deliverability rate of the email and the likelihood that it will be read.
Offline address validation has the same effect. It makes orders more likely to reach the destination and end up in the right hands. When the delivery is reliable, it cuts your shipment expenses and increases customer loyalty.
#3 Defines Your Most Active Followers
In the previous paragraph, it was mentioned that in addition to the email address's reality, during the validation process, it also checks its activity. That is, preference is given to those users who regularly send and read emails.
In turn, this has a positive impact on the effectiveness of the email campaign:
● CTR – the percentage of users who clicked on the link in the email and clicked through to the site (or took another required action);
● conversion – the percentage of users who bought the product after clicking on the website (or performed the required action).
Unfortunately, there is no direct correlation. To increase engagement to the desired level, it will not be enough to clean up the mailing list’s email address base. But if you incorporate content marketing tools and a good strategy, it will work, and a clean base will help get the information directly to the involved user.
#4 Excludes Temporary Emails and Undeliverable Addresses
Temporary mail is a box that is created for a short period. It is mostly used for testing, for example, subscription forms. Still, sometimes a regular user also starts such an email to get a discount on the site or download bonus materials, but he doesn't want to receive emails.
It turns out that it's a convenient way for the subscriber to get what he wants without sharing his real address. But from the company's point of view, temporary emails in the database are garbage, which can negatively affect mailing statistics and lead to financial losses.
For example, you use a mailing list service to send letters and pay for each letter sent. If an email reaches the address that ceases to exist 10 minutes later, you lose money.
When you send direct mail or deliver orders to inaccurate addresses, your budget also suffers. Therefore, it’s important to verify mailing addresses just like you check email data.
#5 Increases the Credibility of the Mailbox and the Domain as a Whole
The reputation of the email determines where the emails will go – to the inbox, or the mail providers will bury them in spam forever. But reputation is complex and dynamic, changing with each IP address and each mailing sent and consisting of IP reputation and domain reputation.
The domain name in newsletters is part of the email address from which you send messages to other users. And if you're not using regular Gmail, but rather the company's website-based mail (in email@example.com format), it's directly linked to it. Therefore, the mailing list's reputation begins to affect SEO as well, the main rule of which is to have as high a ranking as possible to appear at the top of search results.
Of course, in the case of both reputation and SEO, there are other significant factors. The same applies to the rest of the points discussed in this article. Nevertheless, the process of verifying (or validating) email addresses is a useful practice that can help make marketing strategies cleaner and more effective.
Email vs. Shipment Address Verification: The Differences
As it was already mentioned, along with email validation, companies that sell physical goods and provide delivery to an offline address should include verification. But while email verification is primarily for effective marketing strategy, delivery address validation often serves other purposes.
Such a process includes AVS: checking the billing address and comparing the address with the postal database. It’s needed to confirm that the parcel can be delivered to this address at all. Thus, AVS partially protects against fraud, and the second stage of validation helps not to lose money for delivery if the address is entered (intentionally or mistakenly) incorrectly. First of all, it is useful for online-shops, manufacturers, and dropshipping operators.
If you need to integrate automated address validation in your system, you can use Inkit. Inkit Verify is a unique product designed specifically to verify physical addresses and optimize order processing for merchants.
Frank Hamilton is a blogger and translator from Manchester. He is a professional writing expert in such topics as blogging, digital marketing and self-education. He also loves traveling and speaks Spanish, French, German and English.