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KNOWLEDGE BASE HOME » 09. TROUBLESHOOTING: EMAIL » Viewing Answer
Why are my emails, not being received by the person I am sending them to?
There could be many reasons why your emails aren´t getting received by the person that you are sending them to. Most of the reasons are beyond our control.

A common reason, is due to internet security software blocking the email. This means that software on the computer of the person you are sending the email to, or their ISP mailserver, has categorized your email as spam, and you email has been delivered to the users spam folder. Please ask the person that you sent the email to, to see if the email has been delivered to their spam folder.
Please also check that the email that you have sent, hasn´t been caught in your own internet security software.

Another reason, is the ISP of the person you are trying to send the email to, has blacklisted the IP range of the sending mailserver. This can happen if someone else using an IP number within the range, has been reported and blacklisted for spamming. This then can effect any other users that send emails within that blacklisted IP range. The only way to fix this is for you to contact the person or ISP blocking you, and ask them to add you to their whitelist.

Another reason is that your email to the recipient may have been delayed or queued. This occurs when there are high loads on the sending or receiving mailservers of the ISP. Also it can occur when there are spam or DOS attacks on the mailservers.

To prevent these issues, please make sure that you have got your outgoing mailserver in your email client, set to that of your ISPs outgoing SMTP mailserver. (eg. for Telecoms Xtra, it will be smtp.xtra.co.nz) Please contact your ISP if you don´t know what your ISPs mailserver settings are. If you are still having issues with sending using your ISPs outgoing mailserver (SMTP server), please contact your ISP.

Note if you are using our SMTP Server:

We provide our own SMTP server as a courtesy, as another way for our clients to send emails. However it is provided as is. With all SMTP servers, they can be open to abuse, as clients have full unfettered access to the server to send any email. So potentially clients could send spam if they choose to. One way we prevent this, is to limit the number of emails clients can send per hour. We do also have techs monitoring the servers for suspicious activity. But no matter how closely they are monitored, some client may still send out emails, (either legitimate emails or spam)that receive spam complaints from the email recipients.

With sending email, you can use any outgoing mailserver to send that email. So if you are using our SMTP email as the primary SMTP server, we suggest also having a backup server in place. You can either use your ISPs SMTP server, or use Gmails free SMTP server. There are also a number of other free SMTP servers you can use as backups. At any point in time most email providers will find that they are blacklisted with one or more blacklists, as providers don’t have any control over what emails their clients send, which may result in an IP getting blacklisted. So using two SMTP providers at the same time will mean that there is always a backup server to send though, as it is unlikely that two different SMTP providers will be both blacklisted at anyone time.

Please note that if you use Webmail, or send out email though a mailing list on the server, or through a script on your website from the server, you may also experience the same types of problems with your email being bounced back to the sender due to the server IP being blacklisted. We have found that bounced emails are more of a problem with some of the free email providers, as their mail systems are often abused, and they tend to have their own inhouse antispam systems in place, and they can have some very strict filtering software. Please note that in the case of these types of email providers, which tend not to use the main real-time blacklists (which have blacklist removal methods), there is very little we can do to do to get a blacklisting removed from their inhouse system. The email providers who are doing the blocking will need to fix any black listings from their end, and usually any blacklistings they put in place will be removed after a period of time anyway.

Why do mailservers get blacklisted?

Mailserver IPs may get listed for a range of different reasons, and there is no precise discretion on how the mail IP gets blacklisted.

If you are sending any mailing, then you must comply with the following requirements.

-Don’t use false or misleading header information
-Don’t use deceptive subject lines
-Tell recipients where you’re located
-Tell recipients how to opt-out of receiving future email from you
-Honor opt-out requests promptly
-Monitor what others are doing on your behalf

If your email contains only transaction emails or relationship content, then you are exempt from these rules; however, you must still not include false or misleading routing information.

Avoid Spam Trigger Words and Phishing Phrases. Unfortunately, there is no complete list of spam trigger words. Further, it is not always the case that your email will end up in the spam filter simply by using a so-called trigger word.The key thing to remember is that a spam filter is trying to remove commercial advertisements and promotions. So generally, words that are common in such emails should be avoided or used sparingly.

Some systems will also blacklist IPs and mailservers, simply by users tagging legitimate email as spam, or dragging emails into their junkmail / spam folder, when they should be deleting them.

Some IPs may also get blacklisted if a mail server detects a large volume of emails originating from the server, that is out of character. Usually when this happens, the IP will get blacklisted in the RBL (Realtime Blacklists), and it will usually be blacklisted in multiple blacklists.

With the sending of Mass Emails, we do recommend using a third party service like www.mailchimp.com or www.mandrill.com, which have specialised servers and systems for sending out mass emails. Although they will also have the same problem with their IPs being blacklisted from time to time, they have a wide range of other mail servers that can try resending via alternative IPs in case they encounter a problem. They however do have problems with free providers like Hotmail or Live mail from time to time, as you can see at this link http://kb.mailchimp.com/delivery/spam-filters/i-know-this-email-address-is-valid-but-it-hard-bounced . So no system can totally solve this problem.

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