When sending from a new dedicated IP address, it is important to “warm up” that IP in order to establish a good reputation as a legitimate email sender with the Internet Service Providers (ISPs) like Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo!. You might have been an established sender with your old IP address, but now that you have a new one, you must build your reputation all over again. And your sender reputation plays a big role in determining whether your emails end up in the inbox or the junk mail folder. Make sure it’s a good one.
IP warming is a gradual process that happens over time. Slow and steady is the way to go! This means that you start by sending small but frequent (daily) amounts of high performing emails and gradually increasing the numbers you send until you are sending to all your subscribers. The amount of time it takes to ramp up an IP varies based on your overall list size, list quality, frequency of email sends and subscriber engagement. To help you be successful, we’ve assembled some recommendations for how to warm up your dedicated IP.
Send to the engaged segments first
Remember, you only get one chance to make a good first impression. We recommend that you focus on sending to your most active and engaged subscribers during this dedicated IP address warmup period since it will be the initial basis for the ISP’s to determine your IP address’ sending reputation.
Slow and steady for the first week
Start out by sending no more than 20,000 emails to any one ISP per day for the first week. For AOL.com start lower, with only 5,000 sends per day for the first week. This doesn’t mean you can only send 20,000 per day. We mean you can send 20,000 to Yahoo!, 20,000 to Hotmail, another 20,000 to Gmail, and so on. You could even take it a step further and throttle your emails to send a thousand or so messages per hour and spread the emails out over the day.
Starting the second week, double your efforts
After the first week, continue to double the volumes from week to week until you’ve reached your complete audience in a single send. During this time, it is very important to monitor your deliverability and opens by domains. If you discover your email is being placed in the junk folder at any ISP, you will want to pull back on your sending volumes for that ISP.
After the warmup
IP warmup creates a good reputation but that reputation is not permanent. It is still important to follow other email best practices, such as good list hygiene, sending emails on a consistent basis, setting new subscriber expectation and delivering content that your audience wants to receive.
If you need help with any of these, call on ClickMail and our topnotch customer service team!