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What is domain reputation and why should I care?

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07 Jan 2021

There is a high chance of your emails not making it in to the receiver’s inbox, draining all of your hard work and resources and you won’t even know it.

Email deliverability is directly dependent on domain reputation because the Email Service Providers (ESP) keep upgrading their system, putting more emphasis on domain reputation. Therefore, domain reputation is necessary for effective email communication. But if you do not have any idea about this important factor, then let us guide you through.

Domain Reputation:

The Email Service Providers (ESP) makes sure that the IP addresses they are providing are secured and well-reputed. These IPs analyze the overall reputation of the sender. Based on that analysis, the IPs select the emails to successfully deliver to their designated inbox. Thus, sender’s reputation is one of the reasons that the emails are not delivered.

But what are the things that build up a good sender’s reputation?

There is an existing debate among the professionals that whether the sender's reputation is affected by the IP or the domain reputation. But even if it’s IP address that is affecting the sender’s reputation then what if your Internet Service Provider (ISP) makes email selection based on your domain reputation?

That is where the significance of domain reputation lies. The domain reputation enables the sender to maintain its reputation and since it is not entirely dependent on individual IPs,it simply means that a sender can send emails using different IPs and providers. A sender also gets to add new IPs or use shared IPs without putting the brand’s reputation at stake.

So, we can simply say that domain reputation is the “health” of a sender brand’s domain in the eyes of Email Service Providers. This health of domain is dependent on the numbers of factors which include:

But what if the things are not working out for your brand and your credit score is low or even negative? This will affect your email deliverability. Your email may get directed to spam folders or even getting blocked from ESP.

How does Domain Reputation work?

You should be aiming at an overall good domain reputation. But, if you want to upgrade the level here, you must know how that level is designed. Therefore, you should first understand how the domain reputation works.

Restoring Domain Reputation

It happens a lot that the marketers or senders do not give the domain reputation much attention. This eventually shatters their brands’ domain reputation. Once it is damaged, even switching to a different service provider won’t help you. There is no short-cut here and you should not look for it either. The only thing you can do is invest your efforts and time in restoring the domain reputation.

As building up the reputation of your brand’s domain is not a one-time task, similarly, restoring its already damaged reputation will also take some time. As the restoration will require consistent improvement, you have to be patient; depending upon the current metrics, it can take about a month or two.

It also immensely rely on what improvements you are trying to implement on your email communication practices and how. Another influential aspect is how the ESP and its algorithms are responding to your changes.

Maintain Domain Reputation

The next step is to find the tricks to maintain a good domain reputation. Although it is not as challenging it takes time to show results. Here we have mentioned three of the most effective tricks to maintain your domain reputation.

1. Metrics and Inbox placement (with third-party tools)

2. Clean Data

3. Recipient’s Response

1. Metrics and inbox placement (with third-party tools)

From now onwards, closely monitor your domain reputation metrics and also the inbox placement. You should also take the third-party tools into account here. Since there are several tools to choose from, marketers often confuse between the suitable ones for their job. Thus, here we have mentioned some general tools that can come handy for you. They are all quite convenient and effective.

Seed Testing Tools:

It helps in examining campaign rendering along with inbox placement.

Google Postmaster Tool:

It helps in accessing data and diagnostics. This tool also timely exhibits the detailed metrics and reputation shifts.

2. Clean Data

Understanding what damages your brand’s domain reputation will help a lot in restoring it. One of the main reasons behind it is invalid email or high bounce rates.

At first, it seems very easy and simple to dispatch your emails to a long list of subscribers. It's only later that you realize that sending bulk emails without segmentation will only damage your domain reputation. This is why you need to have as clean and managed data as possible and try to maintain a segmented recipient list.

Also, you must have a secured sign-up process designated for your website. How does it help? This helps in guarding data that is entering your recipient’s lists. Without it, risky data can kick your reputation down the lane. You can use many tools that help you in the segmentation of your recipients.

3. Recipient’s Response

The most important step every marketer should focus on is monitoring the email engagements. It is also quite important for maintainingthe domain reputation. Your recipient’s response and interaction with your emails greatly affect the ESP algorithm. So, closely monitor what type of email content is getting good engagement and change your practices accordingly.


A good domain reputation will get your brand more consistent email deliverability, enabling you to unlock your achievements. However maintaining as good domain reputation is not as easy; it takes time and efforts. Remember that it cannot be compromised at any cost. One way to ease this process for you is to adopt CBT Mass Email Sender, which does not only adds efficiency to your campaigns but also maintain your reputation.

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