Email Deliverability 2024: Navigating the New Email Sender Requirements of Gmail and Yahoo in 2024

In the ever-evolving landscape of digital communication, email deliverability remains a critical tool for businesses and individuals alike. However, with the increasing concerns about spam and security, major email service providers like Gmail and Yahoo are stepping up their game. Starting February 2024, these giants are set to enforce a new set of requirements for email senders. This move, while aimed at enhancing email security and integrity, poses new challenges and necessitates adjustments for email senders worldwide.

Understanding the New Requirements

1. The Impetus for Change

The primary goal behind these new regulations is to combat spam and ensure that legitimate emails reach their intended recipients without hindrance. With spam emails not only being a nuisance but also a potential security threat, these measures are timely and crucial.

2. Who Needs to Comply?

The reach of these requirements is extensive, affecting anyone who sends emails to addresses hosted by Gmail, Googlemail, Google Workspace, or Yahoo. This includes individual senders, small businesses, and large corporations.

3. Spotlight on Bulk Senders

A significant focus of these new requirements is on ‘bulk senders.’ If you’ve sent 5,000 or more emails within a 24-hour period, these additional rules are for you. This categorization isn’t limited to a single email address but extends to the cumulative count from a primary domain.

Breaking Down the 2024 Email Deliverability Requirements

1. General Requirements for All Senders

– Domain Authentication with DKIM: DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) is an authentication method that helps receivers verify that an email was indeed sent and authorized by the domain’s owner.

– Maintaining Low Spam Rates: Keeping spam rates under 0.3% as per Postmaster Tools is critical. This tool helps monitor the health and performance of your email campaigns.

– Prohibition of Certain Email Addresses: Using or for sending bulk or business emails is a no-go.

2. Additional Rules for High-Volume Senders

– Domain Authentication with DMARC: Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC) is another layer of authentication that builds on SPF and DKIM.

– Email Address-Domain Alignment: The email address used for sending should align with the domain authenticated via SPF or DKIM. This ensures consistency and trustworthiness.

Quick Checklist with your Domain to ensure you have all of the proper Domain authentication in place:

For those utilizing Brevo, a popular email platform, some of these requirements may already be in place:

Domain Authentication Checklist for Email Sending

1. SPF Authentication

   – Verify that SPF records are published in DNS for your domain.

   – Ensure that the SPF record includes all IP addresses that are authorized to send mail on behalf of your domain.

   – For dedicated IP users, confirm that SPF records are pre-configured correctly.

2. DNS Record Validation

   – Validate that your domain has correct forward DNS records (A or AAAA records).

   – Check that your domain has proper reverse DNS records (PTR records) for all sending IP addresses.

   – Regularly monitor your DNS records for any unauthorized changes.

3. Email Format Compliance

   – Format all outgoing emails according to the Internet Message Format standard (RFC 5322).

   – Include proper email headers, such as ‘From’, ‘To’, ‘Date’, and ‘Subject’.

   – Ensure that the body of the email is properly structured and encoded.

(Wondering what an RFC is? It is Request for Comments.)

4. DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail)

   – Implement DKIM by creating a DKIM record in your DNS settings.

   – Configure your email server or service provider to sign outgoing emails with your DKIM key.

   – Regularly rotate your DKIM keys to maintain security.

5. DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance)

   – Set up a DMARC policy for your domain to specify how receiving email servers should handle non-aligned emails.

   – Publish a DMARC record in your DNS settings.

   – Monitor DMARC reports to identify and address authentication issues and unauthorized email sending.

6. Unsubscribe Features

   – Include a one-click unsubscribe link in the header of your emails as per RFC 8058.

   – Ensure the visibility and functionality of unsubscribe links in the body of marketing and bulk emails.

   – Test unsubscribe mechanisms regularly to confirm they work correctly.

Professional at a workstation managing emails with a graphic overlay of a check mark symbolizing successful email organization, indicating efficient Email Deliverability.

7. Monitoring and Reporting

   – Use tools like Postmaster Tools to monitor your domain’s email sending reputation.

   – Keep track of your spam rate and take action if it approaches or exceeds 0.3%.

   – Set up feedback loops with major ISPs to receive reports when recipients mark your emails as spam.

8. Email Testing

   – Before launching a large campaign, send test emails to accounts across different email providers to ensure deliverability.

   – Use email verification services to clean your email list from invalid or risky email addresses.

9. List Management

   – Regularly update and clean your email list to remove inactive or unengaged subscribers.

   – Implement a double opt-in process for subscribers to ensure a high-quality email list.

10. Legal Compliance

    – Stay informed about and comply with email sending laws and regulations, such as CAN-SPAM, GDPR, or CASL, depending on your location and the location of your recipients.

By following this checklist, you can help ensure that your domain is properly authenticated, your emails are less likely to be marked as spam, and your communications comply with current standards and best practices.

CAN-SPAM Act Compliance

Be sure to be compliant with the CAN-SPAM Act as well.

Here is a summary of the main points regarding CAN-SPAM Act compliance:

Penalties: Violating the CAN-SPAM Act can result in fines up to $50,120 per email.

Business professional working on email management with a critical alert overlay on the computer screen, symbolizing urgent communication in a busy office setting with warnings of errors in her Email Deliverability.
Failing to adhere to email compliance can lead to a decline in click-through rates and may result in your domain being blacklisted, causing all of your emails to be redirected to spam folders. In the most severe cases, non-compliance could result in substantial financial penalties.

Accurate Header Information: Ensure “From,” “To,” “Reply-To,” and routing information are truthful and identify the sender.

Subject Line Honesty: The subject line must accurately represent the message’s content.

Ad Disclosure: Clearly and conspicuously disclose that the message is an advertisement.

Location Information: Include a valid physical postal address in the message.

Opt-Out Instructions: Provide a clear explanation of how recipients can opt out of future emails, ensure it’s easily recognizable and understandable, and do not block opt-out requests with spam filters.

Opt-Out Rights for Subscribers and Members: Subscription or membership does not negate the recipient’s right to opt out of marketing emails.

Prompt Opt-Out Compliance: Opt-out requests must be processed within 10 business days without requiring more than an email address or a simple web page visit, and without charging fees.

Prohibition on Data Use After Opt-Out: Do not sell or transfer email addresses after an opt-out request, except to a company assisting with CAN-SPAM compliance.

Responsibility for Outsourced Email Marketing: Legal responsibility for compliance remains with the hiring company, even if another company is executing the email marketing.

For additional details or specific queries regarding the CAN-SPAM Act, businesses should consult the official guidelines.

Important Notice about the CAN-SPAM Act!

IMPORTANT NOTICE – It’s imperative, and I stress IMPERATIVE, to remain well-informed about the CAN-SPAM Act compliance guidelines. Disregarding these regulations is no trivial matter – with penalties exceeding $50,120 for each email, you could be stepping into some severe trouble.

Speaking of Compliance, then there’s the GDPR.

GDPR Compliance

This is for email recipients who are resident’s of residents of Europe. Even if you’re sending emails from North America, if you have bulk email recipients that have a European residence, you need to comply.

“Specific Consent”, with the a double opt-in is the best method here. Check out the GDPR on Email Encryption and look specifically for the Email marketing and spam section.

Conclusion and Further Resources

As we approach February 2024, adapting to these new email sending requirements is imperative for continued success in digital communication. Whether you are a small business owner, a digital marketer, or part of a large corporation, understanding and complying with these guidelines will ensure your emails continue to reach your audience effectively.

For a more comprehensive understanding and to stay updated with any changes or additional details, it’s recommended to consult Google’s email sender guidelines and Yahoo’s sender best practices. Remember, staying ahead in the digital world means staying informed and adaptable.

Not sure where you stand? Checkout our auditing services. We can assess your situation and help point you in the right direction.

Article by Scott ChandlerSenior Director of Demand Generation, VonClaro

Scott Chandler holds the position of Vice President of Growth Marketing at VonClaro. In this capacity, he orchestrates sophisticated marketing strategies, primarily focusing on paid advertising and search engine optimization (SEO). His deep comprehension of the digital marketing sphere empowers him to produce substantial and measurable achievements for the clientele.

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