There are two opt-in methods in email marketing and publishing: single opt-in and double opt-in. Both can be incorporated easily into your site, so you can collect contact information and engage your audience. But which is the right one for you?
We are all familiar with junk, spam, and promo folders. This is where email often goes to die when you send to it users who have not explicitly opted in. The reasons for hitting these folders mostly concern mailing domain reputation and email provider filtering, both of which can be positively influenced by getting users to opt-in.
However, most of us in the email business agree that double-opted in subscribers have taken the extra step to confirm their connection to your brand and so are more likely to receive, open and engage with your messages… Which in turn will create a virtuous cycle of increasing opens and engagement. More about that below.
What Is Single Opt-In?
In a single opt-in, subscribers sign up to receive your emails and are added to your email database immediately.
What Is Double Opt-In?
In double opt-in, your subscribers opt-in then they get a confirmation email and link that says, “do you really want our emails (paraphrased).” Once they confirm by clicking, they are added to your email database.
When to Choose Single Opt-In?
Single opt-in is acceptable if you have assurances that the user is safe to mail and that they truly want your emails. This could mean that you are using one or more email validation services and other spam-filtering processes. Getting a user from a source where they are already verified or logged in is also useful — for instance, users on Facebook are already logged on to Facebook and are more likely to be real people rather than bots (not that Facebook is bot free 😊).
- It is user-friendly since users don’t have to perform additional steps.
- You will build your database faster because you are not limiting subscribers by requiring the additional action
The user’s email provider may reject your mail or put you in the spam folders because there is no history of mailing the address. This is particularly impactful if you are sending emails heavy on HTML, images, and links. Damaging your mailing domain is a death sentence in the email world. Users may be only passively interested because they only had to opt-in one time and their intention was unclear.
The user may have low intent.
When to Choose Double Opt-Ins?
Double opt-in improves the quality of lists. Since your leads verify the confirmation email, you know that they are serious about receiving your emails. This is ideal for businesses that email large volumes and need mailing domain protection. It’s also useful in building a higher-intent list which means you’d get a better open, click and purchase rate per email sent. If you are selling advertising based on your list, you want the most engaged audience that you can create so your advertisers will get more results.
- Higher intent per mailed user.
- Safer for your mailing domain
- If you are not diligent with your email practices your confirmation email may end up in the spam folder. But simple text confirmation emails typically have a better chance of reaching an inbox than a link and image-heavy HTML email.
- If you are paying to acquire email opt-ins, you’ll need to factor in a percentage of fallout when confirming to determine your acquisition price targets. Opt-ins that do not confirm seem like wasted leads. They are to an extent. But what you are left with is safer to mail.
ArcaMax knows a thing or two because we have mailed a thing or two 😊. We mail 6 billion emails per year to 3.5 million double-opted-in subscribers. If you are looking to generate or sell email-opt ins, or if you need someone to handle your newsletters — give us a shout.