Adjusting soft bounce settings

Select Contacts from the navigation bar and then select Suppressed contacts from the dropdown that appears. The next screen features five tabs:

suppressed_contacts_bounce_settings_tab_el.png

Selecting the Bounce settings tab displays the following screen:

bounce_settings_tab_el.png

A soft bounce setting represents the number of times an email campaign delivery is allowed to fail due to soft bouncing, before that email address becomes suppressed.

A hard bounce is an email message that has been returned to you because the recipient's address is invalid. A hard bounce might occur because the domain name doesn't exist, the recipient is unknown, or there's some type of network problem on the recipient's end. A contact is suppressed immediately after one hard bounce, which protects your deliverability.

A soft bounce is an email message that gets as far as the recipient's mail server, but is bounced back before it reaches the recipient. One of the most common causes for a soft bounce is a full mailbox. This may happen a lot with your subscribers who use free email services like Yahoo and Hotmail because they allow for very little email storage. The default setting is 4 and this can be changed by either entering a new number or using the slider control (up to a maximum of 5). A lower number helps protect your sending reputation; a higher number helps to avoid suppressing contacts who are only bouncing temporarily.

Once you have set the number, click on the Save settings button.

Good to know

  • When a contact either resubscribes, or when they open or click on a campaign, their soft bounce count gets reset to 0.
  • Suppressions expire after a year for contacts originally suppressed due to reaching the soft bounce threshold. They won't be automatically added back into your account but they can be uploaded again.
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Comments

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    Is the supression set at a maximum of 5 soft bounces? I would like to increase this..Please could you advise how? Thanks

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    Yes, the maximum setting for the number of soft bounces allowed before suppression is 5. This can't be increased.

    Whilst we appreciate that soft bouncing can prove temporary (for example, owing to a full mailbox that could soon be freed up), it’s a fact that excessive soft bouncing, if allowed to happen, can prove harmful to your sending reputation. Thus this limit has been put in place to safeguard against this possibility and ensure you’re complying with deliverability best practice. In fact, we'd ideally recommend using a soft bounce threshold that's even lower than 5.

    Please note though that it’s possible for a suppressed contact to be automatically restored from your suppression list. This can happen when we successfully deliver email to a contact, regardless of the originating account.

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    Can you please explain your last sentence. If the email is suppressed you cant add them to a campaign as they are suppressed so interested to know how you can restore them . 

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    Hi, I was just wondering why the dotMailer support person Neal Goldsmith didn't explain his last sentence as was asked by Paul?

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    Hi Paul and Alex,

    The suppression of a contact on your account due to soft bounces can of course be caused by something temporary, as mentioned above, such as a full mailbox. The system takes this into account. So, if the contact clears out their mailbox and is successfully receiving email sent by another account on the platform, the system intelligently knows that it can deliver to that address again from any account that previously had the contact suppressed for soft bouncing. Thus, in this scenario, the suppression is automatically lifted.

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    Hi Neal

    On the day you made this system upgrade - we saw our shared suppression number jump by 14k. The total shared suppression number for May was 36k. Previously, the average was around 3k a month and had been consistent at this level for 4 years. The shared suppression number has remained abnormally high ever since and the outcome is that our emailable data set has more than halved in since your system upgrade. What on earth could be causing this? And how can we revert the situation as its severely impacting our business results.

     

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    Two questions on this...

     

    1) Is it X consecutive soft bounces, or just X soft bounces ever? I'd think the former makes more sense, as it would seem unnecessary to suppress a contact if, say, they had 5 soft bounces over a long period of time, but successfully received plenty of emails in between. But as nowhere explicitly says "consecutive, I'd imagine the latter option is what's in place.

    2) In order to resubscribe a soft bounced contact (or a hard bounced contact for that matter), they have to be sent a confirmation email. Why can't they just be re-added straight away? They haven't opted out of emails.

    Edited by Matt Hallett
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    Hi. Thanks for your questions.

    1) It is X consecutive soft bounces, not X soft bounces ever; the soft bounce count resets for a contact after they have successfully received an email from you.

    2) There is a case in which a suppression caused by soft bounces is unsuppressed automatically, without a confirmation email being sent.

    As I outline above to Paul and Alex: 'The suppression of a contact on your account due to soft bounces can of course be caused by something temporary, as mentioned above, such as a full mailbox. The system takes this into account. So, if the contact clears out their mailbox and is successfully receiving email sent by another account on the platform, the system intelligently knows that it can deliver to that address again from any account that previously had the contact suppressed for soft bouncing. Thus, in this scenario, the suppression is automatically lifted.'

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    Hi,

    So from what we've experienced the X consecutive soft bounces can be the system automatically retrying the same failed message and not based on a separate email campaign being sent (say the next day).

    This is problematic. Shouldn't the X consecutive soft bounces be based on X consecutive email campaigns that were sent and bounced?
    Basically if there is a temporary issue with the email address and the system retries every 15 minutes you'll basically hit the threshold within the hour and the address will get suppressed.

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    Hi Mike,

    We don't retry sending soft bounced emails to a contact. If a campaign send soft bounces, then it counts as a soft bounce for that contact and that's the end of it.

    The next soft bounce would have to come from another campaign you send to that contact.

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