Subscriber management

How to maintain your email lists to make sure your emails get delivered.
Updated on:
February 1, 2018

Why is subscriber management important?

Successfully managing your email contacts is imperative to maintain a great email sending reputation and increase ROI. A poorly maintained subscriber list could lead to bounced emails and complaints, poor open rate, which negatively affects your email sending reputation and could potentially have you suspended from your email sender. There are several precautions every email marketer should take to ensure that their emails reach the intended audience, rendering your email campaign successful. In this blog post, I’ll be taking you through the key things you need to know regarding subscriber management and how to maintain a hygienic mailing list.


First and foremost, it is important to note that email marketing relies heavily on the consent of your customers. All contacts must explicitly articulate that they wish to be contacted by you. If you fail to take this into consideration and email people who have not expressed their consent, you may receive a lot of complaints. Complaints basically mean that the recipient marks your emails as spam. Complaints are sure to damage your email sending reputation.

Single Opt-In vs. Double Opt-In

All users that have registered or made a purchase on your site have implicitly consented to be on your mailing list. Whether they made a purchase, registered on your site / event, or actually subscribed to your newsletter, they are opt in subscribers.

Single opt-in subscribers benefit from not having to go through the process of confirming their email address, instead, they are automatically added to a mailing list without the hassle.

Despite this being a quicker option for users, single-opt in systems may damage an email sender’s reputation due to typos and if the subscriber deliberately provided a fake or temporary email address. I recommend you use HuBuCo’s real time API to verify email addresses on the spot. Alternatively upload these contacts periodically into our bulk email verifier tool. But most importantly, never email them, not even a confirmation email, unless you have made sure the email address isn’t invalid or disposable.

Double opt in is when a subscriber is added to your mailing list, you send them a confirmation email asking them to confirm they wish to receive newsletters from you. As they click on the link confirming they would like to receive your communication they become double opt in subscribers.

How To Maintain A Hygienic List

  1. You must include an ‘unsubscribe’ option in all your emails. If you don’t include an unsubscribe link in a bulk email, you will be considered as a spammer.
  2. Remove subscribers who have unsubscribed: if you email these people you are likely to get your email marked as spam. ISP’s also monitor if you email unsubscribed users. If you do, that will damage your IP and domain reputation.
  3. Remove subscribers who complained about your email. Take this seriously. Never attempt to send an email to a subscriber who previously marked your email as a spam.
  4. Usually, your email sender will automatically remove unsubscribes and complaints from your list, for you. Make sure you use an email ender application that suppresses these emails, blocking you from contacting them again.
  5. Remove all inactive subscribers from your list: individuals who haven’t open your emails in a while. If your subscribers didn’t open your emails for 3 months, they are probably not interested in your content. This is a major indicator for ISP’s if you are sending SPAM.
  6. If you haven’t emailed your list for 3 months or more, you must verify those email addresses. You can easily upload your contacts into HuBuCo email list cleaning application to find out which email addresses don’t exist anymore. If you send out an email campaign and you have high email bounce rate, your email account can be suspended.

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