How to send bulk email without spamming? When it comes to email marketing, this is a question every marketer have to deal with. Unfortunately, anyone can possibly be a spammer if he or she messed up the bulk email campaigns. When I say anyone, I mean anyone including the big brands. Go to your spam inbox, you can easily found some emails come from big brands, but they end up in spam. Email marking is very fair for everybody no matter how big your brand is.

Gmail marked Texas Health Resources as a spammer

Texas Health Resources Spam

Gmail marked Microsoft Movies & TV as a spammer

Microsoft Spam

Gmail: Type of Spam Emails

  • Spoofed email addresses: An email address looks confusingly similar to the email address of a known sender. For example, the email address may replace the letter “O” with the number “0.”
  • Phishing scams: The email may be trying to trick you into sharing personal information, like passwords or credit card numbers.
  • Messages from an unconfirmed sender: Gmail can’t confirm that the email was actually sent by the particular person or company that appears to be sending it.
  • Messages content is empty: Spammers often send messages with no content in the body or subject to check whether email addresses are valid. Then, they spam those addresses later.

The Checklist To Avoid Spamming

Based on the guidance from Gmail, I compelled a checklist you should follow when you start the email campaign by sending bulk emails.

1. Config mail server with correct SPF, DKIM, and DMARC.

Sender Policy Framework (SPF) verifies identity. Domain Keys Identified Mail (DKIM) ensures the message wasn’t tampered with during transmission. And Domain Based Authentication Reporting and Conformance (DMARC) requires that both SPF and DKIM pass in order to authenticate. These are all protocols that prove to ISPs that you are who you say you are.

Learn more: What Are SPF, DKIM and DMARC?

2. Meet the CAN-SPAM Act requirements.

A violation of the CAN-SPAM Act can subject to penalties of up to $41,484. Here are the CAN-SPAM main requirements from

  1. Don’t use false or misleading header information. Your “From,” “To,” “Reply-To,” and routing information – including the originating domain name and email address – must be accurate and identify the person or business who initiated the message.
  2. Don’t use deceptive subject lines. The subject line must accurately reflect the content of the message.
  3. Identify the message as an ad. The law gives you a lot of leeway in how to do this, but you must disclose clearly and conspicuously that your message is an advertisement.
  4. Tell recipients where you’re located. Your message must include your valid physical postal address. This can be your current street address, a post office box you’ve registered with the U.S. Postal Service, or a private mailbox you’ve registered with a commercial mail receiving agency established under Postal Service regulations.
  5. Tell recipients how to opt out of receiving future email from you. Your message must include a clear and conspicuous explanation of how the recipient can opt out of getting email from you in the future. Craft the notice in a way that’s easy for an ordinary person to recognize, read, and understand. Creative use of type size, color, and location can improve clarity. Give a return email address or another easy Internet-based way to allow people to communicate their choice to you. You may create a menu to allow a recipient to opt out of certain types of messages, but you must include the option to stop all commercial messages from you. Make sure your spam filter doesn’t block these opt-out requests.
  6. Honor opt-out requests promptly. Any opt-out mechanism you offer must be able to process opt-out requests for at least 30 days after you send your message. You must honor a recipient’s opt-out request within 10 business days. You can’t charge a fee, require the recipient to give you any personally identifying information beyond an email address, or make the recipient take any step other than sending a reply email or visiting a single page on an Internet website as a condition for honoring an opt-out request. Once people have told you they don’t want to receive more messages from you, you can’t sell or transfer their email addresses, even in the form of a mailing list. The only exception is that you may transfer the addresses to a company you’ve hired to help you comply with the CAN-SPAM Act.
  7. Monitor what others are doing on your behalf. The law makes clear that even if you hire another company to handle your email marketing, you can’t contract away your legal responsibility to comply with the law. Both the company whose product is promoted in the message and the company that actually sends the message may be held legally responsible.

3. Send emails to opt-in subscribers only.

Send the emails to your subscribers or opt-in contacts who completed a signup form on your website and confirmed an email validation process. In this way, you can make sure all of your emails are send to valid email addresses and not generate high bounce. High bounce is a spamming red flag from the eyes of ISP or email service providers. Never purchased, rented, or scraped lists. These people are more likely to mark your email as spam as they may be not interested in it.

Even if you trying to send bulk promotional emails to your existing customers (or people they know you in person), you still need to get their permission first.

4. Do not include attachments and suspicious links.

Attachment can be very suspicious. Because a lot of viri send via email attachments. Avoid files with suspicious titles, archives (especially password-protected ones), links for downloading a file from free file hosting services.

The same is with links. It’s OK to include links in the email. However, do not use links to s suspicious resource or shortened links. It may be a fraud.

5. Avoid using spam-like words.

Many email services like Gmail adopted large databases of spam-like words to filter out spam emails.

Email Spam Words to Avoid

(credit to hubspot)


As seen on Buy Buy direct
Buying judgments Clearance Order
Order status Orders shipped by shopper


Dig up dirt on friends Meet singles Score with babes


Additional Income Be your own boss Compete for your business
Double your Earn $ Earn extra cash
Earn per week Expect to earn Extra income
Home based Home employment Homebased business
Income from home Make $ Make money
Money making Online biz opportunity Online degree
Opportunity Potential earnings University diplomas
While you sleep Work at home Work from home

Financial – General

$$$ Affordable Bargain
Beneficiary Best price Big bucks
Cash Cash bonus Cashcashcash
Cents on the dollar Cheap Check
Claims Collect Compare rates
Cost Credit Credit bureaus
Discount Earn Easy terms
F r e e Fast cash For just $XXX
Hidden assets hidden charges Income
Incredible deal Insurance Investment
Loans Lowest price Million dollars
Money Money back Mortgage
Mortgage rates No cost No fees
One hundred percent free Only $ Pennies a day
Price Profits Pure profit
Quote Refinance Save $
Save big money Save up to Serious cash
Subject to credit They keep your money — no refund! Unsecured credit
Unsecured debt US dollars Why pay more?

Financial – Business

Accept Credit Cards Cards accepted Check or money order
Credit card offers Explode your business Full refund
Investment decision No credit check No hidden Costs
No investment Requires initial investment Sent in compliance
Stock alert Stock disclaimer statement Stock pick

Financial – Personal

Avoid bankruptcy Calling creditors Collect child support
Consolidate debt and credit Consolidate your debt Eliminate bad credit
Eliminate debt Financially independent Get out of debt
Get paid Lower interest rate Lower monthly payment
Lower your mortgage rate Lowest insurance rates Pre-approved
Refinance home Social security number Your income


Acceptance Accordingly Avoid
Chance Dormant Freedom
Here Hidden Home
Leave Lifetime Lose
Maintained Medium Miracle
Never Passwords Problem
Remove Reverses Sample
Satisfaction Solution Stop
Success Teen Wife


Dear [email/friend/somebody] Friend Hello


Ad Auto email removal Bulk email
Click Click below Click here
Click to remove Direct email Direct marketing
Email harvest Email marketing Form
Increase sales Increase traffic Increase your sales
Internet market Internet marketing Marketing
Marketing solutions Mass email Member
Month trial offer More Internet Traffic Multi level marketing
Notspam One time mailing Online marketing
Open Opt in Performance
Removal instructions Sale Sales
Search engine listings Search engines Subscribe
The following form This isn’t junk This isn’t spam
Undisclosed recipient Unsubscribe Visit our website
We hate spam Web traffic Will not believe your eyes


Cures baldness Diagnostics Fast Viagra delivery
Human growth hormone Life Insurance Lose weight
Lose weight spam Medicine No medical exams
Online pharmacy Removes wrinkles Reverses aging
Stop snoring Valium Viagra
Vicodin Weight loss Xanax


#1 100% free 100% Satisfied
4U 50% off Billion
Billion dollars Join millions Join millions of Americans
Million One hundred percent guaranteed Thousands


Being a member Billing address Call
Cannot be combined with any other offer Confidentially on all orders Deal
Financial freedom Gift certificate Giving away
Guarantee Have you been turned down? If only it were that easy
Important information regarding In accordance with laws Long distance phone offer
Mail in order form Message contains Name brand
Nigerian No age restrictions No catch
No claim forms No disappointment No experience
No gimmick No inventory No middleman
No obligation No purchase necessary No questions asked
No selling No strings attached No-obligation
Not intended Obligation Off shore
Offer Per day Per week
Priority mail Prize Prizes
Produced and sent out Reserves the right Shopping spree
Stuff on sale Terms and conditions The best rates
They’re just giving it away Trial unlimited
Unsolicited Vacation Vacation offers
Warranty We honor all Weekend getaway
What are you waiting for? Who really wins? Win
Winner Winning won
You are a winner! You have been selected You’re a Winner!


Cancel at any time Compare Copy accurately
Get Give it away Print form signature
Print out and fax See for yourself Sign up free today


Free Free access Free cell phone
Free consultation Free DVD Free gift
Free grant money Free hosting Free installation
Free Instant Free investment Free leads
Free membership Free money Free offer
Free preview Free priority mail Free quote
Free sample Free trial Free website


All natural All new Amazing
Certified Congratulations Drastically reduced
Fantastic deal For free Guaranteed
It’s effective Outstanding values Promise you
Real thing Risk free Satisfaction guaranteed

Sense of Urgency

Access Act Now! Apply now
Apply Online Call free Call now
Can’t live without Do it today Don’t delete
Don’t hesitate For instant access For Only
For you Get it now Get started now
Great offer Info you requested Information you requested
Instant limited time New customers only
Now Now only Offer expires
Once in lifetime One time Only
Order now Order today Please read
Special promotion Supplies are limited Take action now
Time limited Urgent While supplies last


Addresses on CD Beverage Bonus
Brand new pager Cable converter Casino
Celebrity Copy DVDs Laser printer
Legal Luxury car New domain extensions
Phone Rolex Stainless steel

6. Always include the unsubscribe link.

Every email must contain an unsubscribe link as it makes possible for the recipient to unsubscribe but not mark as spam.

7. Send relevant and valuable emails.

Take care of your subscribers. If a person subscribed to your bulk email, send relevant and valuable content, that is actual for every subscriber. Use segmentation for this purpose, as it is a customer-oriented method. Segment your subscribers according to gender, city, age, interests and preferences.

8. Check sender reputation regularly.

By keeping an eye on sender reputation (spam complaints, spam traps, unknown users, etc.) metrics you’ll get a good picture of how your emails are being received by subscribers.

Use these 5 Websites to Check Email Sender Reputation


Before sending a campaign, ask yourself: “Does my email meet all the CAN-SPAM Act requirements? Would I like to receive this email? What is valuable and useful in it?”

So, follow the checklist above, take care of your subscribers and you won’t send SPAM.