One of the most frustrating things to happen when sending emails is for them not to arrive in the recipients in-box but instead get incorrectly classed as SPAM and dumped in their junk folder.

And its not just an issue for marketing emails either, transactional and notification emails can suffer the same problem.

Email Delivery

Normally when someone is looking for answers to email delivery problems they send a lot of time reading about the issues from an email marketing prospective.

Whilst I agree this can help with delivering your all important digital communication, its not the only area that needs to be explored.

Do not confuse email marketing with email delivery, email marketing is more about ROI, open rates, catchy content, design, message, subject lines, A/B split testing, Geo targeting, recipient profiling etc.

Whereas Email Delivery relates more to the technical side of delivering email. Get this wrong and it can result in your email marketing efforts being thrown out the window.


If your emails are being wrongly classed as SPAM then there are three main factors to look at:

  • Email Content
  • Sender Reputation
  • Technical Aspects

In this article I am going to give an overview of Email Content, with future posts covering the other factors.

Email Content

SPAM filters use complex algorithms when deciding if an email is SPAM or not, it will look at nearly every aspect of the email in a fraction of a second.

SPAM filters are normally score based, giving positive points and negative points, with the resulting score determining the fate of the email.

Very rarely will a single factor result in an email being classed as junk. It’s normally many smaller factors that can influence a negative score.

Spam filter considerations:

  • Overall percentage of images verses text content
  • Text styling, font style, colour, size, bold and italic
  • SPAM related words
  • Hyperlinks
  • Unsubscribe links
  • HTML verses plain text
  • Embedded images
  • Tracking Code / Invisible Beacons
  • Email size
  • Attachments

All the above examples have to be explored and taken into account when running an email marketing campaign or any regular email communications like notification emails.

I hope the above gives you some initial food for thought, I wanted to keep this article fairly short as it’s my first shot at writing about this subject and I didn’t want to make the post contain too much that it becomes hard to digest,

I’m already working on my next article where I will break down the above examples with full explanations on each and working examples on how to increase positive scoring and reduce negative scoring.

If you have found the information above useful then please take a moment to add a comment below, click like or share the post on social media, thank you.