Email Subscription Best Practices


The first-party data you capture in your email subscription form is the most important initial source of truth you will find about your customer, because it is coming directly from them. Whether you are setting up subscription management for the first time or you are looking to improve your current practices, there are a few key elements that can help prevent deliverability issues, including spam complaints, bounces, and poor inbox placement. Almost all of the data points we gather via email and subscription forms are self-reported, so it’s our job to protect, and respect that data. 

Your Sign-Up Form

Your subscription form is the perfect opportunity to acquire key information about new leads. If you only have an email address field, your lead/contact record will be blank and you won’t be able to personalize emails. Keep your form short and simple, but include the essential details:

  • First and Last Name
  • Company (optional, but recommended for B2B relationships)
  • Location (including country)
  • Email Address
  • Phone Number (optional, but recommended if you also send SMS notifications)
  • Link to a landing page with your company’s terms and conditions (including privacy policy). You can also require a check box to affirm agreement to these terms and conditions. Depending on the location of your subscriber, you will need to respect their regional privacy laws concerning handling their data. 
  • Concise description of the subscriber benefits and what they can expect (content and frequency). Including expectations can help reduce spam complaints and unsubscribes.
  • Recommendation to add your sending email address to their Safe Sender list. Always send from the same address. This will ensure your emails go straight to their inbox. 

Confirmation Email

To weed out fake and typo email addresses, send a confirmation email immediately after the sign-up form is submitted. Invalid addresses will hard bounce. Clean these hard bounces and unsubscribes from your marketing lists on a regular basis to maintain a more accurate membership count. If you want your lists to be squeaky clean, you can require the new subscriber to click a link to the subscription preference center to confirm their options before you add them to your marketing list, which will also allow people to fine-tune their preferences or to unsubscribe.

Record Keeping

Maintain evidence of how and when people subscribe to your marketing emails on their contact records. Get express consent from new leads before sending your marketing emails. Assumed consent can result in higher spam complaints, which can damage your sender reputation, making it harder for you to get into inboxes for all subscribers. 

Need help with your email program and messaging strategy? Let us know here.

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Email Subscription Best Practices

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