Sometimes when you send an email, it never gets through to the recipient. Perhaps the email address has a typo or the receiving email server had some kind of problem. This is known as an email bounce.
Email service providers are required to suspend accounts that have too many bounces while they investigate the cause. Two kinds of bounces can cause trouble: hard bounces and soft bounces.
A hard bounce means that the email is completely undeliverable. The email address may not exist or there could be a mistake in how it was entered. A soft bounce is when the email address is correct, but there’s a problem with the server. Perhaps the mailbox is full or the server is not available at that moment.
Too many of either type can lead to a bounce suspension.
What is a Bounce Suspension?
A bounce suspension is when your email service provider suspends your ability to send emails to your list because you have too many email bounces.
Your provider will let you know what services are available during the suspension, and will work with you to resolve the issue quickly.
Some service providers only block specific email addresses, rather than your entire account. Undeliverable email addresses will be blocked for everyone in the system, even if you’ve never sent to it before.
What Causes a Bounce Suspension?
Email service providers (ESPs) watch for accounts that have bounces beyond standard thresholds. ESPs are required to suspend accounts that go beyond those thresholds and investigate what is going on.
What limits you face during an account suspension will vary depending on your ESP, but in general, you will no longer be able to send messages to your email list. You will probably be able to access other information in your account, including customer data.
Your ESP will send you questions about your account and email practices. If the answers and investigation show that you are not doing anything wrong, your access should be restored.
What Should I Do About a Bounce Suspension?
If your account has been suspended, it’s essential to cooperate with your email service provider’s investigation. Answer all questions fully and honestly.
Once your access is restored, take steps to improve deliverability and avoid bounces going forward. Reconfirm your audience and remove any inactive addresses. Use confirmation emails when someone signs up to avoid sending to bots or fake email addresses.
These steps will help keep your list clean, and as a bonus, your list will be more engaged and active. That means better leads and more sales!