Does SEM Affect Deliverability? Tim Falls February 20, 2012 Best Practices, Technical // SUMMARIES ?> With all the emphasis being placed on search engine marketing, one question remains unanswered. Does search engine marketing (SEM) affect email deliverability? While there may not be a direct correlation between email and SEM, there are cross channel implications that you need to consider since the goal of most online marketing efforts is to engage in an email exchange that will lead to customer relationship. Your SEM efforts typically will drive visitors to a landing page or your website. From there your goal is to convert these visitors into subscribers and ultimately, customers. In each case, you are attempting to develop a relationship with that visitor to engage with your brand for an extended period of time. Whether you are asking the visitor to subscribe to your email list or complete a sale, you will be collecting data that can be used to for your promotional email efforts or subsequent transactional email messages. In either case, you need to follow sound email practices to ensure the people who end up on your list want to receive your email messages. Here are few tips to help bridge the gap between email and SEM. 1. Advertise a clear message. Since you only want potential buyers to end up on your list, make sure your advertising and online marketing materials not only have a clear call to action, but also clearly communicate what you are delivering. 2. Employ strong permission tactics. When visitors convert via your landing page or website, send a welcome message and if possible, use double opt-in. This will ensure that a subscriber really wants to be on your list, and gives you another chance to communicate your value proposition. 3. Validate emails. Sometimes people give fake email addresses on landing pages so they can gain access to your offer without joining your list. Others simply make mistakes by filling out their email incorrectly. To avoid this, make sure you validate email addresses to ensure “real people” join your list. This in turn will help keep your list clean. 4. Maintain your brand identity throughout the customer lifecycle. Avoid costumer confusion. Make sure your landing pages, website, banner ads and emails have a consistent look and feel. This will solidify the connection between you and your subscribers. 5. Analyze leads from search channel. Monitor your email deliverability for leads that you derived from your search efforts. If you are getting high spam complaints or bounce rates, you may need to adjust your messaging or reevaluate search as acquisition source for your organization.