You’re probably monitoring your dealership’s online reputation with customers on DealerRater and Google, but did you know there is another element of your dealership’s reputation that is being scored that can dramatically impact your store’s sales? This is the email reputation your dealership has with Internet Service Providers (ISPs) such as Hotmail, Yahoo, AOL, etc.
If you have a bad email reputation with the ISPs then the next time you hit the “send” button on an email campaign to your customers you’ll find a growing percentage of your emails delivered to your customers’ spam folders rather than their inbox. Customers can’t respond to messages they don’t know that they have so inbox delivery is critically important to generating the sales prospects we’re all looking for.
Here are a couple of free resources that will help you monitor your email reputation:
1. Senderscore.org – This ranking measures your email volume, complaint rates, unknown users (hard bounces) and spam trap hits. (Spam traps are email addresses that have been inactive for a long period of time that the ISPs monitor. The theory is that if John Smith’s email has been inactive for two years and you’re sending email to that address then John probably didn’t request your email and it is most likely spam.)
2. Senderbase.org – This ranking will deliver a good, neutral or poor rating as well as tell you if you are on any DNSBL listing (blacklists).
3. AOL post master reputation – This tool will let you know what AOL thinks of you with a good, bad or neutral rating.
4. SNDS – Windows Live Hotmail Smart Network Data Services is a Hotmail-based report that displays daily delivery metrics by IP. With this tool you first need to sign-up and prove you have authorization to view the stats for your IP. This report includes delivery into all Hotmail-owned domains. I wish every ISP gave this detailed feedback that includes:
- Date: The day your IP address sent at least 100 messages to the Hotmail portal
- Sent/Delivered: Volume received by Hotmail and accepted by Hotmail
- Color: Your total content delivered as likely spam, organized by color: a. Green: 0-10% likely the message(s) are spam b. Yellow: 11-90% likely the message(s ) are spam c. Red: 91-100% the message(s ) are spam
- Abuse Rate
- Spam Traps
Sign-up information is at: https://postmaster.live.com/snds/FAQ.aspx#WhatIsSNDS
According to Microsoft, in the last few years they’ve reduced the amount of spam from almost 35% to less than 3% of the messages you see in your mailbox. They accomplish this by filtering out 5.5 billion spam messages out of Hotmail every day. That was BILLION and that was every single day.
Monitoring your email sender reputation will help you gauge whether or not your dealership’s emails are getting included in this group. Next month we’ll look at some ways you can improve your email reputation.
Technical note: to use the free lookup tools above, you’ll need to know the IP address your dealership is sending your emails from. If you don’t know the IP address, you can locate it in the header of one of the emails sent by your dealership.
For help go to: http://whatismyipaddress.com/find-headers