Part of list building is keeping your email lists clean. Depending on the email list management/autoresponder you use, you should be able to track your subscriber’s actions and see who is opening your emails and who isn’t; the same with click rates, and a wealth of other information for that matter. I use and recommend AWeber ($).
Okay, why do we want to remove inactive subscribers, don’t we want the biggest email list possible? No, we want the most responsive list possible.
- First of all, the bigger our lists are, the more we pay. Why pay to send email to people that never bother to open them?
- Second, what happens when those subscribers get tired of deleting your emails or, worse yet, forgot they even subscribed in the first place?
If you are lucky they will just unsubscribe but some will click that forbidden “spam” link in their email client; this is very bad. Too many spam complaints will cause the webmail providers to start sending your emails to everyone’s spam box if it even gets delivered at all. Too many spam complaints will also force your list management and autoresponder service to remove your control over your own email lists; they’re not going to risk their business over a customer’s bad list building techniques.
Important: There are a couple of things to consider before deleting subscribers.
Are They REALLY Inactive Subscribers?
Did you know open rates only apply to HTML emails? That’s right; subscribers that receive and open their emails in text format are not counted. We don’t want to remove or unsubscribe anyone just because they read the text versions of our emails.
Did you know that subscribers that aren’t allowing images to show in their emails are not counted either? That’s right, an invisible image is embedded within the HTML email you send and that’s what is tracking those open rates. So if your email client is blocking images, no one can determine if you opened the email. Just like the text based readers, those subscribers blocking images will appear inactive unless they are clicking links.
The Solution – Send A Warning Notice
We need to send a notice to those we THINK are inactive subscribers and be sure they are actually inactive; at least that’s what I do. We cannot depend on the statistical data 100%, from any autoresponder, so sending a warning notice only to those suspected of ignoring our emails can reduce the risk of deleting subscribers that want to remain subscribed.
TIP: You can try to recover a few of those inactive subscribers by offering a free report or similar offer before going through steps to remove them.
Sample Notice Sent In TEXT Format.
Below is a copy of the last notice I sent just earlier this week. Be sure to give subscribers a week or so to see and respond to the email. In this case the notice went out to 95 subscribers and we ended up removing (not unsubscribing) 87 of them. Note: It is better to remove/delete the subscriber when using AWeber because you are still charged for unsubscribed people as long as they are still on your list.
How To Remove Inactive Subscribers
Related link: AWeber – How Can I Remove Inactive Subscribers From My List?