Avoiding the spam folder is more of an art than a science. And it is constantly changing as email providers change their rules on how to classify messages.
Below are a few tips that can help:
Use your own organization's from address.
Never send email from a Gmail, Yahoo, etc. address. The recipient server will often look at your from account and determine that the message came from PowerBase and not from a Gmail or Yahoo server and punish your email as a result
Add an SPF record for your domain.
SPF stands for Sender Policy Framework. It's a way to tell the Internet which servers are allowed to send email from your domain. Due to the way email sent, adding an SPF record won't make a difference when sending CiviMail - but it will help if you avoid the spam box when send email as activities. We have a specific page on setting up SPF to work with PowerBase.
Sign your email using DKIM
DKIM stands for Domain Keys Identified Mail. By digitally signing all out-going email, you declare that a message the claims to be from you really is, thus reducing the likelihood that your email will end up in the spam folder. We have a specific page on setting up DKIM to work with PowerBase.
Check your domain
Ensure your domain name is not listed as a spammer using blacklistalert.
Write your messages carefully
Careful with links
If you include a link in your email, use words to describe the link, not the link itself. In other words, your email should not say:
Please visit our web site at https://progressivetech.org/
In the above example, the web site address is the link you click on.
It should say:
Please visit our web site.
The words "web site" is the link you click on.
If you track click throughs, then PowerBase will replace all links in your email with a link to PowerBase itself which will then transparently redirect the user to the intended web site, so we can keep track of who clicked on the link.
Therfore, your actual link will be to the PowerBase site, but the link people see in the email will be to a different site (the ultimate destination). Some email spam bots notice this and will consider your message a scam.
Avoid spam sounding language
Don't include words such as "free, promo, buy, act now, 100% guaranteed, $$$" etc, especially in the subject line. Avoid all caps and excessive exclamation points.
Don't just send an image.
Have a well-balanced text to image ratio. In other words, don't just send a big picture in your message. That is often a flag for spammers
No external images
Don't include images from other sites - always add images using the PowerBase upload image function.
No URL shortners
Don't use URL shortners like bit.ly or tinyurl - they are seen as potential spam. It's preferable to use buttons where you can add a link, or create a link from text as discussed in "Careful with Links" above.
Don't pollute your database with purchased email lists. If you send to a purchased list with lots of dead email account, you could harm the reputation of your domain for future email messages
Check your bounce rates after every message you send. If you notice any spikes or unusually large number of bounces, please report to support as soon as possible. Sometimes, our servers get blocked and need to know about it right away to fix the problem.
Educate your recipients
Ask your members to add your sending address to their address books. That often is enough to ensure you wont end up in the spam folder and most people know how to do that.