IP warming is a practice, you gradually increase over time, the number of emails you send out via your IP address. Email Blasting out of a “cold” IP address damages deliverability and might catch the ISP radar’s attention.
When switching to a new IP address, it’s critical to start slowly with a low send volume, in order to establish a good sender reputation with the new IP address. This gradual ramp-up is known as the warm-up period. It may take a month or more to reach your normal send volume on the new IP address, but this will help to avoid having your mail blocked.
Ultimately, you want to establish a good reputation so your mail lands in the inbox. From a mailbox provider’s perspective, when they see mail coming through from an unknown IP address, they are immediately going to be suspicious and assume this is spam trying to infiltrate their customer’s inbox.
To ease the nerves of mailbox providers and reduce the risk of a new IP address having harmful effects on your reputation, as well as deliverability, consider the following:
1. Consistency: This is a basic, key element that often gets overlooked during the warm-up phase. Whether it’s consistency in volume or frequency, mailbox providers will notice trends in your mailstream.
2. Target engaged users: Even with a fully warmed IP address, e-mail client such as Yahoo and Gmail significantly filter heavily on user engagement. This is why especially during the initial phase of warming up a new IP address, you really want to remove unengaged subscribers and include active users only. It’s the quickest way to build your reputation and accelerate the warm-up process. 3. Ensure complaint suppressions: Anytime someone marks your email as spam, this gets documented as a complaint. Along with inactive users being targeted, complaints are the sure shot way to damage your reputation and ultimately get your messages sent to the spam folder.
4. Check bounce report: Checking your bounce reports is an additional step you can take to confirm that you’re targeting the right people, and also removing hard bounces from your list can help with list hygiene. If a non-existent email address exists on your list and bounces back, this should be treated similar to a complaint and suppressed right away.
IP address warm-up can be time-consuming, but with patience, awareness, and smarter sending, it can be a seamless process. While there is no single formula or standard way of warming up a new IP address, keeping these steps in mind will put you on the path to a smooth transition from a cold IP address, to a warm one ready to handle your usual distribution.