Dear Gmail Team,

‘Tis the season for sharing and giving thanks, and SendGrid’s anti-spam team extends a heart-felt “thank you” for the data you share with us via Google’s Spam Feedback Loop (FBL) and the Google Postmaster Tools. The data is actionable and helps us identify unwanted mail that other spam detection systems miss. Your feedback and reputation metrics help our customers improve the quality of their email.

Gmail has become a center of gravity in the email universe, and so we appreciate the insights your machine learning systems share with us. This synergistic data sharing is especially important considering the large volume of email we deliver to Gmail and Google Apps users. SendGrid processes over 22 billion email messages a month on behalf of tens of thousands of customers. About 35% of that traffic, almost 8 billion messages a month, are addressed to Gmail or Google Apps recipients.

We have been using Google Postmaster Tools for over six months now, and since this is the holiday season, this letter would not be complete without a wish list. We would be grateful if the elves on the Google Postmaster team would use their hammers and tongs to build:

  • An API so we can systematically retrieve the Postmaster Tools metrics, which we will incorporate into our automated abuse management system.
  • A higher cap on the number of IPs you share reputation for (we send our customers’ mail from many thousands of IPs). This will help us track reputation improvements as we coach our customers and teach them better sending practices.
  • A search tool to facilitate ad-hoc lookups of IP reputation across all domains in our account.

SendGrid’s anti-spam team reviewed the behavior of thousands of customers since we began receiving your automated FBL reports in October 2013, and the more recent Postmaster Tools metrics in May 2015. Each one of your FBL alerts are worth investigating, and the Postmaster Tools’ IP and domain reputation metrics continue to help us prioritize our anti-spam and customer education efforts. It’s gratifying to see SendGrid’s Compliance and Delivery Consulting Services teams make an impact as they coach customers toward better sending practices, then see a corresponding improvement in Google’s opinion of the sender’s reputation.

Bottom line, our signal to noise ratio improves each time we take action on your feedback and metrics. SendGrid’s service quality increases when we reduce the amount of unwanted mail. Our customers get better results when they learn from your feedback and improve the quality of their email campaigns. That’s good for SendGrid’s customers and the email ecosystem at large.

Trust is the foundation of the email ecosystem, and healthy communication is necessary for trust. Thanks for providing trusted ESPs with helpful feedback data and reputation metrics. We’re using the insights to improve our customers’ email sending practices. Email’s better when it’s wanted.


Paul Kincaid-Smith
VP of Email Delivery

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