The Ultimate Email Deliverability Toolset

The Ultimate Email Deliverability Toolset

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If you’re reading this, I’m guessing you already know that email is an effective way of reaching out to prospects. It’s estimated that there are over 4.2 billion email users, meaning it can be used to reach more than half of the world’s population. 

Of course, emails can only get results if they actually reach your prospect’s inbox. No matter how good your message is, it’s not going to convert if it’s not delivered. In turn, poor email deliverability can start a vicious cycle, damaging your sender reputation and resulting in even more of your emails going to spam. 

This post will cover all the different types of email deliverability tools you need and every step of the process, so you can ensure your next email campaign reaches as many people as possible.

Technical setup

The first step in improving email deliverability is correctly setting up your domain and email account. This can be a little complicated, especially if you don’t consider yourself tech savvy. If talk of DKIM and DMARC settings makes you nervous, you’ll definitely want to use one of the following tools to check your setup and uncover any issues. 

MxToolbox

MxToolbox is simple to use but also incredibly thorough, making it a popular tool for checking your email setup. The default test will look up MX records against any given domain, but this can easily be expanded to pretty much any test you can imagine with the SuperTool. 

The dedicated Email Health Check tool carries out hundreds of tests on your domain, network, and email performance, highlighting any critical issues that should be resolved. This includes everything from DNS configuration to showing up on blacklists. 

MxToolbox’s free plan comes with weekly blacklist monitoring for one domain. At the other end of the scale, the Delivery Center Plus plan can monitor five domains and over 5,000,000 messages each month with advanced tools and dedicated expert support for $399/mo. 

Mail-tester

Mail-tester is another easy way to check whether you’ve got everything set up correctly. As well as checking your domain details, the app can also analyze your email message to confirm that every part of your email campaign is optimized for deliverability.

Simply send a message from the domain you want to check to the unique email address provided by the Mail-tester. As soon as your message is received, you’ll get a spam score, rating your email deliverability on a scale of ten. 

Mail-tester will check your domain configuration, message content (including your SpamAssassin rating), blacklists, and broken links. You’ll get a detailed report letting you know about anything that hasn’t been properly configured and how to correct any errors. You can also quickly check your domain’s SPF and DKIM keys without sending an email. 

Mail-tester’s web interface is free to use and will be more than enough for most people. If you want to view your statistics and results for 30 days, you can create an account for this and other features. 

Bonus: Check out our advanced guide on using mail-tester to improve your email deliverability score.

EmailStuff

This no-frills set of online tools is designed for people working with email. Like the other tools we’ve considered, EmailStuff uses publicly available data sources to check authentication details.  

EmailStuff describes itself as a work in progress, so don’t expect a large range of features or a super slick interface. For a tool that’s completely free to use, you’re getting exactly what you need: a quick and easy way to confirm that your SPF records, DKIM keys, and DMARC policies are all in place and correct for your domain. 

Appmaildev

This free tool uses a test email address to confirm that your DKIM signature, SPF records and DomainKey signature are all correct. 

Once you’ve chosen which type of authentication you want to check, you’ll be provided with a temporary email address to email. Once your message has been received, you’ll get a reply with a report letting you know if there were any issues. 

Alternatively, if you don’t want to use the temporary email address, each test page shows you how to use your own Gmail and Yahoo accounts to test your domain settings. There are also links to various tutorials if you’d like to learn more, such as how to set up DKIM in Exchange Server.

Ensure top deliverability for your cold emails by following our step-by-step outreach setup checklist.

Sender reputation management

Even with all the technical details sorted, you still need to ensure your domain has a good reputation. For example, if your brand new account suddenly starts sending large numbers of emails, email service providers (ESPs) might start treating your messages like spam and block delivery. 

To avoid this, build and maintain a strong reputation. While this can be done manually, it’s a time-consuming process. Instead, use one of the following tools to monitor and improve your sender reputation. 

Sender Score

This free service will evaluate your domain reputation based on a variety of factors including complaints, email volume, external reputation, unknown users, and rejected messages. Enter your IP address and company details, and the algorithm will award you with a sender score that indicates how mailbox providers view your IP address. 

The score will be a number somewhere between zero and 100. If your score is less than 70, that means you need to take action to repair your reputation. On the other hand, a score of over 80 means that you have a great reputation. Domains in this category may also qualify for the Sender Score certification program, which promises preferential treatment at major mailbox providers. 

Reply’s Email Warm-Up Tool

warmup report

If you’ve got a brand new account or need to rescue your reputation, Reply’s warm-up tool is here to help. The system uses a network of trusted inboxes to send and receive emails in a 100% automated process. However, rather than simply building up the number of emails you send over time, the tool also sends positive engagement signals such as opening and replying to your messages, further boosting your reputation. 

The service offers multiple warm-up profiles, from building up a reputation for a new account to restoring a damaged reputation. In addition, it’ll also check your DNS settings, such as those all-important SPF, DKIM, DMARC, and other related records.

Reply’s warm-up service pricing is based on a flat fee of $29 per email account per month.

Effortless email warm-up to boost inbox placement

Email validation and verification

Once your account and domain are properly set up, it’s time to think about who you’re emailing. How confident are you that the email addresses you’re reaching out to are valid? 

Even if you’re using a list of inbound leads that you’ve personally built, you should still verify those email addresses. A small typo or a honeypot address can mean more bounced emails, a lower delivery rate, and damaged reputation. Here are some of the tools we recommend. 

Verifalia

This email verification service validates your emails and also identifies any risky addresses with over 28 tests checking for spam traps, catch-all servers, disposable email addresses, and more. 

Verifalia offers three levels of service quality depending on your specific requirements. The standard level offers one validation pass, sufficient for most businesses, while the extreme quality level uses nine validation passes for maximum confidence. With the professional plan, you’ll also get access to real-time processing to prevent invalid email addresses from entering your system and eliminate data that’s gone bad. 

You can start with a free plan that includes 25 daily credits. The professional plan offers 1,250 daily credits and costs $49/mo. with the ultimate plan clocking in at $499/mo. You can also top up your credits on any plan with PAYG pricing, starting at $7.90 for 1,000 credits. 

ZeroBounce

This email validation and deliverability platform guarantees 98% accurate results and is the go-to email checker for brands like Amazon, Netlifx, and LinkedIn.

ZeroBounce detects a variety of poor-quality email addresses that can sabotage your inbox rates. It helps you remove invalid contacts, spam traps, disposable and role-based emails – and segment emails associated with catch-all domains. What’s more, ZeroBounce’s email validator identifies known complainers who may report your emails as spam.

You can clean your email list in bulk or use the real-time API email checker. Every month, you can verify 100 email addresses for free. If you need to validate more, Pay-as-you-go rates start at $16 for 2,000 validations, while subscriptions start at $15.

NeverBounce 

 

NeverBounce offers a combination of email list cleaning and verification for total peace of mind. The software can clean and update your uploaded list of any size for bulk verification with a 99.9% delivery rate guaranteed. You can also connect the service directly with your email provider for automated cleaning.

Alternatively, you can use real-time verification to confirm emails as soon as they enter your system. For example, by connecting the verification service to your CRM, landing pages, and registration forms, you can immediately check that those emails are valid.

You can verify existing lists with NeverBounce’s pay-as-you-go service. The more you verify the cheaper it is, going as low as $0.003 per email. For automated cleaning, prices start at $10/mo. for up to 1,000 emails.  

Email Hippo

Email Hippo offers two key services for email verification. The CORE service is ideal for checking uploaded lists and giving clear results on which emails are valid. The MORE service takes this up a level with their API, analyzing 74 data points for every email address. 

This also comes with lots of nice additional features, such as a Trust Score to determine how confident you can be that an email is valid and the ability to segment your list based on location, mail provider, etc. 

You can try out the service with 100 free email validations. From there you can either pay by the list for the CORE service (with a minimum $10 transaction fee, which at the time of writing would get you just over 1,000 email checks), or you can subscribe for the MORE service, starting at $9.88/mo. for 1,000 emails/requests.

Email content optimization

One thing that has a great impact on your email deliverability but often gets overlooked is the contents of the email you’re sending. There are several aspects to pay attention to in your emails, including spam words, links, image-to-text ratio, HTML code, etc. Some sources also mention other criteria that spam filters are using to qualify your email as harmful. 

Luckily, there are tools that help you make sure your email contents don’t set off any alarms and safely reach their destination.

Email Subject Line Tester

 send check it

This tool is laser-focused on helping you create a subject line that gets your email opened and replied to. Just type your subject to have it checked against 16 parameters, including scannability, reading grade level, length, preview, sentiment, spammyness, punctuation, personalization, questions, etc.

As we’ve recently discovered in our research on subject lines, all of these aspects do matter when it comes to email outreach. Using this tool, you can see how your subject line compares to over 100,000 emails in the database and the insights the creators have drawn from them.

Spam Analyzer by SendForensics

One of the handy deliverability testing tools offered by SendForensics, Spam Analyzer is specifically focused on helping you pinpoint the words and phrases that might set back your email deliverability and lead to lower engagement. 

The tool analyzes your email copy based on the current spam patterns helping you maximize the odds of it being delivered to the inbox. So instead of checking your message against the (probably stale) list of spam words, you can rely for insights on live data trends.

In addition to that, you can also check the email source code and layout, learn whether you’re on any blacklists, and make your infrastructure audit (including email headers, SPF, DKIM, and DMARC records, etc.).

Using Reply for sales outreach? Get your email templates instantly checked against 6 key parameters for maximum performance.

Seed list testing 

Even when you’re confident that your account is set up correctly and that you’re using verified addresses, it’s good practice to test your emails with a seed list before reaching out to any potential customers. 

Mailtrap

mailtrap

Mailtrap positions itself as an “email sandbox service,” offering all kinds of ways to test and optimize your emails. This includes automating test flows with their API and analyzing email content for spam. Their testing service allows you to send emails to Mailtrap directly from your CRM or email provider, simulating campaigns and seeing how the major providers treat your emails. 

Setup takes just five minutes and requires zero maintenance, making it an ideal way to validate your email campaigns. Each Mailtrap account comes with an individual testing environment that can be integrated with your app in just a few clicks. 

Mailtrap features a forever-free plan that offers basic functionality for personal use with paid plans starting at $9.99/mo.

GlockApps

GlockApps lets you test your email deliverability and see where your emails end up with all major ISPs, including Gmail and Outlook. The service includes a lot of the features you’d expect to see from an email deliverability service, such as blacklist monitoring and DMARC analysis. 

However, the feature we’re particularly interested in here is their automatic inbox tests. Once you’ve created the test, Glock Apps spam checker tool will automatically send your message to their test email addresses at specified intervals, so you can monitor your inbox placement daily and spot any issues immediately. 

The free personal plan gives you three email spam tests, with actionable tips for future improvements, while paid plans start at $59/mo. 

Litmus

litmus

Litmus is a popular all-in-one email marketing platform with plenty of different features to help you create and optimize your email campaign, including email deliverability. For example, you can instantly preview your campaigns in more than 100 different email clients. 

When it comes to spam testing, Litmus can scan your email against over 25 different tests and notify you of any issues. You’ll also get practical advice on how to resolve any of those problems and improve your email deliverability rate.

To use the pre-send spam testing, you must be on the Litmus Plus plan, which currently costs $159/mo. 

Email on Acid

Email on Acid is an email pre-deployment platform, taking care of everything you need to send emails with confidence. This includes previews to check that your email displays correctly on over 90 different email clients and devices, pre-deployment checklists, and email deliverability tests. 

The service will check your email and IP address against the most popular spam filters and blocklist services, allowing you to resolve any deliverability issues before you start your next outreach campaign.

Email on Acid’s Basics plan is $74/mo. with unlimited email previews and partial content checking, while the Premium plan is $134/mo. and includes full content checking and deliverability testing for three users. 

Final thoughts

Email deliverability is a key component of any outreach campaign, but all too often it’s only an afterthought. Rather than waiting for deliverability to become a problem, create the best foundation for your campaign by preparing in advance to get as many emails delivered as possible. 

By using the tools we’ve discussed and considering every aspect of email deliverability, from initial technical setup and reputation management through to email verification and testing, you can get ahead of any issues before they hurt your delivery rate. That means you can spend more time creating epic emails, confident that they’ll reach as many of your prospects as possible.

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