Let it go. 5 ways to improve your unsubscribe experience

As an email marketeer, it’s quite hard to see the number of unsubscribes after you’ve sent out a campaign. It might seem dramatic sometimes, but in reality, an unsubscribe isn’t the end of the world. It’s better to see a number of contacts unsubscribe than getting that dreadful ‘other option’: seeing that they labeled your campaign as spam…

Because being marked as spam hurts your deliverability, while unsubscribes don’t. They’re going to happen no matter what you do. So you might as well make the experience as positive as possible both for you and your subscribers. Let’s see how you can do that.

1. Let contacts unsubscribe in less than two clicks

When people click the unsubscribe button, make sure they can leave the list quickly. There’s no need to add any further obstacles. Ideally, the unsubscribe process should be swift and painless: you provide a link in your email that, when you click it, either automatically unsubscribes your contact or asks for a final confirmation. Additionally, you can redirect them to a final landing page that lets your former contact know that unsubscribe process was successful. Asking your unsubscriber for more than two clicks will annoy them and may even make them click the spam reporting link on your email. And we don’t want that to happen, do we?

2. Encourage contacts to opt-down instead of opt-out

Give your subscribers the choice to opt-down. Instead of letting them unsubscribe completely, offer them the chance to opt-down to a lesser frequency, or take a break from your emails for a period of time. Here’s a terrific example:

unsubscribe23. Implement an email preference center

Preference centers are the best alternative for an indefinite unsubscribe to all email communication. It gives your contacts the opportunity to tailor your emails based on their needs, instead of unsubscribing. A cleverly structured preference center can help focus on the kind of content your audience wants to receive. This is particularly useful for subscribers who are still interested in your email communication, but feel they are receiving too many emails. Take a cue from Booking.com.

unsub4. Promote your social channels on your unsubscribe confirmation page

Just because a user doesn’t want to receive your email communication anymore, doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t like you anymore. Or that they don’t want to hear from you through other channels. Perhaps email just isn’t right for them. That’s why it’s best to promote your social channels on your unsubscribe page and encourage users to follow you elsewhere. This is how Postmark keeps their unsubscribers in the loop.

unsubscribe_confirmation5. Don’t ask customers to log in to their account to unsubscribe

You shouldn’t ask users to login to their account to be removed from a mailing list. It’s a drag. Setting up barriers in the unsubscribe process will most likely result in users hitting the dreaded spam reporting button.

6. Ban the confirm unsubscribe email after an unsubscribe

Sending a final email to someone who has just let you know that them don’t want to receive any of your email communication is a no-go. It’s like you are just not respecting the wishes of your unsubscribers. Avoid a faux pas like this and you’re heading in the right direction!


Don’t want your unsubscribers to click the report spam button? Provide your subscribers with a smooth unsubscribe process. See if there’ a way to gently guide them through a preference center or an opt-down opportunity so they can let you know what they really need (and expect) from your email communication.


Get Access to our whitepapers

Posted on
Jul 3, 2019