Emails are a necessary part of life. They are how we communicate with our family, friends, and co-workers. They are also how we conduct business. We use them to send invoices, set up meetings, and close deals. Because email is such an important part of our lives, it is essential that we keep our email addresses clean and up-to-date. This is where data hygiene comes in.
What Is Data Hygiene?
Data hygiene is the practice of keeping your data clean, complete, and accurate. When it comes to email validation, data hygiene, according to experts like Site Impact, is ensuring that your email list is filled with accurate, current, and working email addresses. This may seem like a simple task, but it is actually quite difficult. Email addresses change all the time. People switch jobs, they switch ISPs, and they forget their passwords. As a result, it is estimated that 30% of all email addresses change every year. That means that if you have a list of 1,000 email addresses, 300 of those addresses will be invalid within 12 months.
That might not seem like a big deal, but consider the consequences of sending an email to an invalid address. First, you run the risk of having your email marked as spam. Second, you run the risk of having your IP address blacklisted. And third, you run the risk of damaging your sender reputation—which can impact your deliverability for years to come.
Why Data Hygiene is Important
Data hygiene is important for all businesses, but it is especially important for businesses that rely on email marketing to reach their customers. After all, email marketing is only effective if your emails are actually reaching people’s inboxes. If you send emails to invalid addresses, your campaigns will suffer.
There are a few ways that data hygiene can impact your email marketing campaigns:
1. Low deliverability rates:
If you send emails to invalid addresses, your emails will bounce. And when your emails bounce, your deliverability rates suffer. In fact, a high bounce rate is one of the surefire ways to get your IP address blacklisted.
2. High spam complaint rates:
People will mark your emails as spam if you send emails to invalid addresses. And when people mark your emails as spam, your complaint rate increases. A high spam complaint rate is another surefire way to get your IP address blacklisted.
3. Low open rates:
Even if your emails are reaching people’s inboxes, they are not going to do you any good if people are not opening them. If your open rates are low, it could be a sign that your email list is full of invalid addresses.
4. Low click-through rates:
If people are not opening your emails, they will certainly not click through to your website. And if they are not clicking through to your website, you are not going to generate any leads or sales.
5. High unsubscribe rates:
If people are tired of getting emails that they never open, they are going to unsubscribe from your list. And when people unsubscribe from your list, your unsubscribe rate goes up. A high unsubscribe rate is yet another surefire way to get your IP address blacklisted.
So, as you can see, data hygiene is essential to the success of your email marketing campaigns. If you want your campaigns to be successful, you need to make sure that your email list is clean.
How to Keep Your Email List Clean
Now that you know why data hygiene is so important, you are probably wondering how you can keep your email list clean. There are a few things that you can do to ensure that your email list is as clean as possible:
1. Use an email verification service:
An email verification or validation service provided by experts like Site Impact will help scan your email list and remove invalid addresses.
2. Use a double opt-in:
A double opt-in requires people to confirm their email address before they are added to your list. This helps to ensure that people only sign up with valid addresses.
3. Remove inactive subscribers:
If someone has not opened one of your emails in six months, they will probably not open any of your future emails. So, it is a good idea to remove them from your list.
4. Send regular “re-engagement” emails:
If someone has not opened one of your emails in a while, you can try to re-engage them with a special offer or coupon.
Data hygiene may not be the most exciting topic in the world but it is a vitally important one—especially when it comes to email validation. By keeping your data clean and up-to-date, you can avoid a lot of headaches down the road. So take the time to clean up your data today—you’ll be glad you did tomorrow!