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How To Warm Up Your Dedicated IP Address
Email marketing has become an important part of business be it a new startup or an old business. However, there are several issues associated with email marketing, the topmost being, email deliverability. How does one make sure that the emails are always delivered? There are several factors that affect email deliverability, like sender reputation, content, etc.
Your IP address also plays an important role in email deliverability. Here we have discussed what an IP is and how to warm it up.
What’s an IP Address?
An Internet Protocol address (IP Address) is just a label or number that is assigned to each device connected to the internet. Different Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can identify the sender through the IP address. They use this IP address to determine the sending patterns and assign a reputation score to that IP address. The higher the reputation score, the higher the chances of getting your email delivered.
For sending emails, companies can use two types of IP addresses. Either they can use a shared IP address or a dedicated IP address.
Shared IP Address
A shared IP address is one that is shared amongst different companies, i.e., multiple companies are using the IP address at the same time. A shared IP has its merits and demerits. It is cheaper to use but the downside is as a number of companies are using it to send emails, the IP reputation will be determined by the collective behavior. Even if the sending behavior of one company is suspicious, it might ruin the IP reputation score and create a problem for the rest of the users.
Dedicated IP Address
With a dedicated IP address, a company can have an IP address entirely to themselves. This gives them control over the email traffic so that they can maintain the IP reputation score and also tackle any problem that might occur with email deliverability. This is the reason why most big companies use dedicated IP addresses for email delivery.
What is IP Warming?
Warming up an IP is the process of slowly sending out emails, firstly in small numbers, and then gradually increasing them so that the Internet Service Provider can get familiar with the sending pattern. This will allow the ISP to set up a good reputation score for the IP so that future emails can be sent out easily. If one starts sending out a huge amount of emails without warming up the IP, the ISP might detect the flow of emails as spam and set up a negative reputation score for the IP address.
Why Do I Need To Warm Up My IP?
Warming up an IP is needed so that future email delivery does not face issues. The point of IP warming is to send a small number of emails at first and then slowly increase the number up to the point that the number of emails being sent out daily is close to the number of emails you’ll be sending to your customers on a daily basis.
- This procedure will help the ISP learn your sending behavior and your emails will not be recognized as spam. Most of the spammers keep switching to new IPs and send emails without warming up the IP.
- The Internet Service Provider checks the sending pattern, engagement on emails, spam reports, etc. and then assigns an IP score accordingly.
- What Determines The IP Reputation?
- Various factors are responsible for determining the IP reputation score. Some of them are:
- Number of emails sent per day
- Number of emails that were opened by the recipients
- Number of emails reported as spam
- Number of emails moved to other folders
- Undeliverable emails
This data informs the ISP about the quality of your emails, how responsive the audience is, and the relevance of emails. Based on these factors, it assigns a reputation score.
How to Warm Up an IP Address
Follow the following steps to warm up a dedicated IP address:
The first step is to set up your goal, how many emails will you be sending out per day? Once that is identified, start by sending small chunks of emails. It is recommended to select a few recipients from your list at first for sending emails. A good practice is to send emails to your personal accounts. This will be beneficial especially if you’re building a reputation from scratch. At first, some emails might end up in the spam folder so you can move them out to the primary inbox. If you’re sending emails to personal accounts first, you can also reply to them and engage in order to create a good reputation score.
The next step is to increase the number of emails and include people from your contact list as well. Choose the contacts who are active and will engage well with the emails. You can choose to send engaging emails so that your IP reputation is improved or you can start with a dedicated welcome message. This will surely prove to be beneficial for your business.
In case of engagement data being unavailable, a good choice will be to send emails to the most recent subscribers as people who subscribed recently are more likely to engage with the emails. Slowly you can work your way up by adding old subscribers as well and increasing the number of emails gradually. Make sure to add the least engaging recipients at the last.
In case the emails are not getting the desired engagement, getting spam reports, or not being delivered at all, you should try slowing down the sending process. A good choice will be to decrease the number of recipients and only send emails to active users until the reputation builds up again.
How to maintain IP reputation?
- Once you’ve warmed up your IP, it is important to maintain the reputation score. The following factors should be kept in mind to maintain a good reputation score:
- Keep the content interesting and engaging
- Use catchy subject lines
- Make sure the content is easy to read
- Avoid fillers
- Provide useful content