Here’s a simple list help you avoid spam complaints from your subscribers:

Do Not:

  • Do not use words that express spam-like content such as Free, Money Back Offer, Guaranteed and other similar terms (spam trigger words).
  • Do not use loud colors in the email body text, such as red or green.
  • Do not use all capital letters in the subject line or even within the body of the email.
  • Do not use exclamation signs or other punctuation marks more than once.
  • Do not use excessive symbols, use descriptive words instead. When you use dollar signs, make sure you do not overdo it ($$$).
  • Do not use overly prominent call-to-action buttons, for example, with loud colors or capitalization. Words such as ‘CLICK HERE’ are spam triggers and capitalizing them makes it worse.
  • Do not use bad HTML coding in email. Also, avoid converting Microsoft word files to HTML.
  • Do not use ‘Re’ or ‘Fwd’ in the subject line to trick recipients into thinking that the mail is a continuation of a previous conversation.
  • Do not use a lot of images that include text. If your email is HTML coded, avoid using one big image. Spam filters cannot read images so sometimes emails trick spam filters by embedding text in images. This practice is risky.
  • Do not use purchased lists. Sending emails to those who do not expect your correspondence is risky and can put your company’s reputation at stake.
  • Do not offer misleading claims in the subject line. Always deliver what you have stated in the subject line.
  • Do not use bulky attachments in emails. If you attach files in .jpg, .gif, .png and .pdf make sure the email also contains text content. Do not send emails attached with executable file types, such as .exe, .zip, .swf and so on.


  • Always include a ‘from’ address. Emails from unknown senders are immediately reported as spam. However, avoid ‘from’ addresses that look like or
  • Always include your physical mailing address and a phone number in the emails.
  • Keep your email size under 30kb. Avoid unnecessary text and images.
  • Provide an unsubscribe link within the email that it is prominently visible to the recipient. This will help you avoid spam labeling. The unsubscribe link must be active within at least 30 days of sending the email.
  • Use permission-based marketing techniques or the double opt-in method to avoid sending emails to recipients that are likely to report them as spam. Both these methods ask for the user’s permission to receive your email. While permission marketing can be done in various ways, the double opt-in method refers to a customer opting-in to email newsletters on a form on your website and then confirming the opt-in with a confirmation link sent to his/her email.
  • Ensure that the design of your email templates identify clearly with your brand or website. Include your logo on the upper left corner or center of the email template. Avoid using stock template colors. Customize your email templates with your website’s theme.

  • Author: maryka.burger

  • Maryka has worked across multiple industries ranging from hard news journalism to digital tech companies and advertising. She is an expert at building online presence, and offers a wealth of knowledge on digital marketing, social media and automation trends to agencies and digital start-ups.