Whether you’re a spy, a backwoods hunter, or a company sending out marketing communications, it’s important not to fall into a trap: It could damage your reputation and blow the entire mission. If you happen to belong to that last category, it’s particularly essential to watch out for the metaphorical hole in the ground covered with leaves and sticks known as the spam trap.
Like any good trap, a spam trap is built to capture things—in this case, that thing is evidence that that a given email sender isn’t being thoughtful about the people they’re sending messages to. Spam traps are essentially dummy email addresses, ones that no sensible sender should be targeting, and they’re used by internet service providers (ISPs)/inbox providers to identify and blacklist emails from potential spam senders.
There are a few different kinds of spam trap out there, but three main types are in broad use today:
Typo Spam Traps: These addresses are designed to capture emails that resemble actual accounts but which are misdirected due to common typos (think “firstname.lastname@example.org”)
On a surface level, staying out of spam traps seems pretty simple: Just don’t send email to these sorts of accounts! Of course, when your company has millions of users—with millions of email addresses—that can be easier said than done. The best way to avoid this deliverability pitfall? Follow established email best practices, such as:
Avoiding buying or renting email lists from third-parties of any kind
Want to dig deeper into sending great email and mastering deliverability? Check out “Emails on Email,” our interactive look at modern email marketing and where it’s going.
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