We all hate spam but some guys and gals are making a living out of sending emails of the legitimate variety. Even if you don’t belong to this group because you send newsletters only occasionally, the tips in this article will be of great use to you.

1. Never Send Unsolicited Emails!

The most obvious approach to getting past the spam folder is not to send emails the recipient hasn’t requested. Unsolicited email goes beyond sending emails to people whose addresses you have obtained from somewhere without their explicit consent. For instance, if there is no way to unsubscribe from your newsletter, the recipient might be getting unsolicited emails because you are not giving them a way to opt-out in case they don’t want your emails anymore. Therefore, you need to always include an Unsubscribe option and streamline the Unsubscribe process. Also, when collecting emails, always use double opt-in (i.e. send a verification email to confirm subscription before adding a user to the list) because everybody can enter some person’s email address against his or her will, which also makes the email unsolicited.

2. Don’t Buy Email Lists, Build Them Yourself

It is true that building a list of subscribers takes time and it might look much easier to buy such lists but this has some downsides as well – the list might not be current and/or the subscribers there might not want to receive your newsletter. Because of this, it is much better to build the list yourself. With the simple and efficient WordPress opt-in plugins, building a subscribers’ list is relatively fast and easy and won’t lead you into unsolicited emails trouble.

3. Don’t Send the Newsletter from a Blacklisted Email Address and/or Domain Name

Even if your subscribers are legitimate, if the email address and/or the domain you are sending your newsletter from is blacklisted, this will also put your email in the spam folder. While you can ask your subscribers in the verification email to whitelist you, this won’t help much if the email address/domain name itself are blacklisted because your recipient’s mailserver will block the message way before it gets to the user’s inbox. Unfortunately, there are way too many blacklists on the Net and it takes a lot of time to check if you haven’t made into one but you do need to perform these checks because even if you are the totally legal and ethical, some competitors might have blacklisted you on purpose.

4. Avoid Spam-like Styling and Wording

Another common reason why legitimate newsletters get caught in spam filters is because of spam-like styling and wording. Words, such as ‘Free’, multiple exclamation marks, chunks of text in all caps, etc. are typical for spam emails and this is why when an email contains them, spam filters spring into action. Just limit the use of these techniques and this is the safest you get do.

5. Set a Spam Filter and Test

Finally, if you want one more proof that your newsletter bypasses spam filters, you can set a spam filter and test. If you don’t have the time (or skills) for that, there are various free tools that you can use, such as Programmer’s Heaven Spam Check.

With all the spam filters that are on the watch out on servers and inboxes, you can never be sure that your newsletters arrive where they are intended to but if you use these simple strategies, this drastically increases the chances to keep your newsletter away from spam folders.