As you know, having strong permission practices is key to building a healthy email list. So, when designing your email program, you need to decide whether you will use a single opt-in process or a double opt-in. With a single opt-in, a user does not need to confirm their subscription. They simply sign up and are automatically added to your list. With double opt-in, a user needs to proactively confirm his/her subscription. This usually requires the user to click on a link in a confirmation email that you send immediately after they ask to join your list. If the user does NOT click on this link, then they will NOT receive your email.

There are pros and cons to each method. For instance, while single opt-in enables faster list growth, it puts you at risk for lower list quality (not a good thing!). Double-opt in will help you create a healthier list by preventing bad email addresses from being added to your file, but it can take a longer time since some users will inevitably forget to click on the link resulting in lost opportunities (but it’s worth taking the risk to ensure you have quality subscribers).  Double-opt in is ultimately better for your sender reputation and email deliverability.

For an example of a double opt-in done right, take a look at how this local business tries to ensure their new subscribers confirm their subscription by using the double opt-in method.


A holistic wellness center for doggie daycare presents this “thank you” page after a new subscribers signs up for their list. Here are the three things we really like:

1)    Textual cues. Letting new subscribers know to check their email to complete their subscription is a good way to solidify the double opt-in and confirm the overall subscription. The strong headline copy “You’re Almost Done – Activate Your Subscription!” gets your attention.

2)    Visual cues: Providing an image of the Gmail inbox helps connect the dots for new subscribers. The only thing that would have made this visual even more powerful, would have been to clearly show the actual subject line they use so new subscribers would know exactly what to look for to confirm their opt-in.

3)    Audio cues: What you can’t “hear” right now is a voice telling you that you are not quite done. While not everyone loves audio on websites or in emails, adding the audio was a clever touch to capture the subscribers’ attention and encourage them to take the next step.

By using text, audio, and visual cues in their landing page, A Bark Above took an often missed opportunity to connect with their audience. People receive information differently so using these three methods was a smart way to use their landing page to encourage more subscribers to complete the process.

A Bark Above took their double opt-in to the next level. The email is well-branded, well-intentioned, and helps seamlessly (and humorously) guide their subscribers through the subscription process.

To learn more about other email best practices, download our free Deliverability Guide. And want more tips like this delivered to your inbox each day? Then subscribe to our blog. You’ll love it, we promise.

With more than 15 years of experience, Carly Brantz is an email deliverability and inbound marketing veteran. As the VP of Revenue Marketing at SendGrid, Carly empowers her team to transform marketing from a cost center to a revenue generator. With a key focus on funnel optimization, Carly leads the team responsible for content creation, lead nurturing, SEO/SEM, and website optimization. An accomplished speaker, Carly shares her email delivery and revenue marketing tactics as a headline speaker on SendGrid’s international roadshow as well as other Marketing conferences.