When was the last time you gave your email list a top to bottom review? If you can’t remember (ah!) or it’s been a few months since you evaluated your list and your content offerings, now is a great time to do so.

The best gift you can give your subscribers is to stay relevant and stay courteous, so keep these 3 quick musts and 1 must not in mind while you assess your list and your messaging.


Unsubscribe Links

Unsubscribe links are a 100% MUST when sending marketing/promotional email. The CAN-SPAM Act requires it—no ifs, ands, or buts. But, what about transactional emails that are exempt from CAN-SPAM compliance?

In these cases, think about the content you’re sending. If you are sending notification emails like friend requests, updates, and perhaps even product enhancements, consider including an unsubscribe link.

Why? In order to establish a trusted relationship with your subscribers, give them the opportunity to decide what information they’d like to receive. We delve into our thoughts on this a little more in our blog post on the topic, found here.

Re-confirmation Emails

A good practice that will help keep your lists clean, is sending re-confirmation emails to users who have not clicked or opened an email in quite some time. These emails remind your recipients of the services you provided (that they once opted into) and politely ask for the recipient’s permission to continue sending emails. Lands’ End does a great job of showcasing an effective re-confirmation email below.


Our compliance team compiled a blog post that covers everything you need to think about when developing a re-confirmation email. Read all the details here.

Permission Reminders

Just like re-confirmation emails, permission reminders help to establish a transparent and trusted relationship with your subscribers. Your subscribers were smart to sign up for your list, right? So remind them just how smart they are with some descriptive text that re-establishes your relationship with them.

Quintin from our support team explains why “the more information you provide your customer, the more they will trust you” and shares some examples and personal insights here.


Link Shorteners

Everyone uses link shorteners because they’re hip and easy, right? Not so fast—before including link shorteners in your next email, remember that everyone includes spammers. Want to help ensure that your emails aren’t looked at as spam? Use your own private link shortener or use HTML. Brian Toresdahl from our compliance team explains.

The bottom line on these 3 musts and 1 must not is that focusing on building trust and transparency in your messaging and email address acquisition practices is always the best course of action.

For more tips to keep in mind as you clean your list and re-evaluate your content, check out our Highway to Hell guide that includes 7 email pitfalls to avoid on the way to the inbox.

Jillian Smith
As Twilio SendGrid's Sr. Director of Content, Jillian is responsible for ensuring that SendGrid provides valuable thought leadership content through the blog, whitepapers, webcasts, and more. When not writing and editing, you can find Jillian frequenting Denver restaurants in search of the best queso.