Best Practices Guide For Removing Spam Traps
Spam traps can be a drag on your email marketing campaigns, especially when measuring email deliverability rates with major providers like Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL, Outlook, and Live. These providers disable valid email accounts after a period of inactivity for 6-12 months. Those accounts then form a spam trap network. If your marketing and transactional email messages are hitting a certain percentage of spam traps, your sender reputation scores will be penalized. This leads to blacklisting, inboxing issues, and being quarantined to the spam folder.
Regular email hygiene with email list scrubbing is the best way to ensure your contact lists are free from traps and potential spam complainers. Real-time email validation using an API request can instantly cleanse new addresses added to your lists. Older contacts can be uploaded in CSV format to quickly remove traps, bounces, and invalid emails.
Spam Trap Email Detection with a Simple API Query
Detect spam traps, frequent complainers, and honeypots with email address validation that cleanses email address lists and CSV files with additional support for real-time validation with an API request. Easily integrate spam trap detection into your favorite email marketing services like Mailchimp, AWeber, Hubspot, GetResponse, Intercom, Salesforce, & more. Eliminate bounces and poor quality addresses that hurt email reputation.
Spam traps and invalid emails can greatly impact your deliverability rates and sender score. Be proactive about your email reputation with accurate spam trap removal and email validation by IPQS.Check Spam Traps with Email Verification
What is a Spam Trap Email Address?
Spam traps are used by Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and mail service providers to identify users that send unsolicited messages, usually through marketing campaigns. Usually, these are email addresses which were previously active and experienced over 180 days of inactivity without a valid login. Mail providers then add these email addresses into their spam trap databases. When a specific sending domain or IP address hits too many inactive accounts or spam traps, the mail provider will blacklist the IP or domain, hurting their sender score.
It's estimated that over 15 billion SPAM messages are sent each day by email. Since mail providers are in a never ending battle against spammers, they can be somewhat aggressive with labeling mail as SPAM, which is why it's so important to avoid sending email to spamtraps. It's also important to note that there many different types of known spam traps. We explained inactive honeypots above — now let's explore other types of spamtraps.
Known Spam Trap Types Explained
- Pristine Spam Traps — Pristine spam traps, also known as "pure spam traps", are created specifically for acting as a honeypot. These emails were not previously used by other owners or for legitimate email. Pristine spam traps are usually posted in the source code of a website or in similar placements that make it easy for scrapers and spambots to discover their address. Email addresses collected by scraping are greatly frowned upon by mail service providers.
- Spamhaus & SpamCop Spam Traps — Data is king, so many third party reputation providers maintain their own spam trap databases. Spamhaus and SpamCop are the most popular third party services and even allow any business to "donate a MX record" to automatically forward spam complaints. Many security providers such as TrendMicro and McAfee also maintain their own traps.
- Typo Spam Traps — It's very common for users to misspell their own email addresses when registering an account or subscribing to a newsletter. Despite typos being a common human error, some providers do monitor typo spam traps to measure the amount of typos in an email marketing campaign. Large amounts of typos show that the sender is not using best practices or proper email validation.
- Recycled Spam Traps — These kinds of traps are similar to the inactive honeypots mentioned above. When email address lists are no longer maintained, it's easy for the emails to become outdated. If an email address has been inactive with a mail service provider for over 6 months, then it typically will automatically convert into a recycled spam trap for the mail provider. Senders that have large amounts of recycled spam traps in their email list are likely to be blacklisted.
- SORBS, BrightCloud, Talos, & UCEProtect — Web security and intelligence companies such as Webroot, Cisco, and Lashback have expanded their footprint to monitoring sender SPAM and abusive emails. When an unsolicited email hits a spam trap, these cyber companies may blacklist your sending IP address for up to 30 days. This can have devastating effects on deliverability, preventing legitimate emails from delivering to the inbox. Each individual honeypot is typically part of a larger spam trap network consisting of hundreds of sites.
How Do I Check if an Email Address is a Spamtrap?
Using the IPQS email validation service, spamtraps and honeypots can be detected by comparing email address behavior to our actively maintained spam trap database. New spamtraps and honeypots are detected every minute through our layered approach, which gathers sender data from the internet's largest retail brands and other proprietary collection methods. Extensive data quality monitoring ensures that email validation results are accurate & reliable. Poor quality emails can be easily scrubbed from your email marketing lists to avoid spam traps from affecting inboxing rates & hurting deliverability. Spamtrap detection can be integrated with API lookups or by uploading a bulk email address CSV file.
How To Avoid Spam Traps?
Avoid spam traps by following industry best practices which recommend verifying email addresses as new users subscribe or register to your email marketing lists. Good email hygiene practices ensure that invalid emails and even spam traps or emails recognized as frequent spam complainers can be quickly detected before they impact your sender reputation. Maintaining low bounce rates and scrubbing poor quality domains, such as disposable or parked domains, provides the best chance of avoiding spam traps while also improving sending reputation signals. Best practices also encourage rechecking email address lists every few months to detect recycled spam traps. Email addresses often change statuses within this time period, with optimal recheck rates every 3 - 6 months to remove spam traps and invalid email addresses.Check Your First Email Address List Free
How To Remove Spamtraps?
Spamtraps can be easily removed from an email marketing list by cleansing the list with an email validation service or by preventing spamtraps from subscribing to your marketing lists with a real-time API check. It's important to remove spamtraps before starting any marketing campaigns. Spamtrap removal is a best practice that ensures your messages have the best chance of inboxing and not landing in the SPAM folder. It's also a good practice in general to keep your marketing lists up to date to prune invalid emails.
Routinely checking ip reputation for your sending mail servers is also recommended to ensure that previous spam trap detections are no longer penalizing your email inboxing rates. If your IP address is blacklisted, most sources provide a method to delist the IP address within 24 hours.
Spam Trap List Download
Looking to download spam trap lists? IPQS maintains the largest online spam trap database list available for download with daily updates. Access fresh data trusted by email experts for the largest retail brands that send millions of email marketing content per week. Best practices recommend cleansing your email lists against the spam trap list downloaded at least once per day. The list updates with new data every few minutes with the newest spam trap emails including pristine spam traps. Alternatively, bulk email validation files can be uploaded and checked against our spamtrap database.
What Happens If I Send an Email to a Spamtrap?
Have you accidentally messaged an existing email address list with poor email hygiene? This could impact your sender score and lower deliverability rates for your email messages. Most major mail service providers are very forgiving as email quality improves, so by ensuring all future email is sent to verified email addresses, your inboxing rates will naturally improve. Even if you have a existing email marketing list, spamtraps can be removed every few months.
Using a reputable service for spamtrap detection is the best solution to keep your email lists clean and maintain a healthy sender score.