How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minimum

halfaneighth

New Member
Hi,

I have been using eMail Verifier for some time now and it seems to have served me well on the whole, however, a few months ago I got a bit of a shock when a list that I had verified produced so many bounces that I got suspended by the bulk email service I was using.

I figured the problem was that I should not have used 'Looks Valid' addresses, since their validity is not completely confirmed, but after reading the FAQ section on eMail Verifier page, I've learnt that the issue may in fact be with addresses marked as 'Valid' due to the system's inability to check non-SMTP addresses such as Yahoo and Hotmail, of which there are a lot in the list.

I am currently preparing to recommence sending my newsletter as the service suspension has now been lifted on appeal, and I have decided not to use the troublesome list, but I would really appreciate any advice on steps I can take in using eMail Verifier results to reduce the chance of bounces to a minimum.

In particular, I'm interested to know:

If I was to use both 'Valid' and 'Looks Valid' results, is it likely that most bounces would be caused by non-SMTP addresses marked as 'Valid'?

How reliable the 'Valid' results will be if I remove all non-SMTP addresses such as Hotmail and so on?

How reliable the 'Looks Valid' results tend to be in general?

Anything else I can do to further clean 'Valid' and 'Looks Valid' results in order to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minimum?

I am aware that I can tell eMail Verifier to mark non-SMTP addresses as bad in the 'Rules' panel, and this may come in handy at some point, but at the moment it would be most helpful to understand any other potential causes of bounces that may be found within 'Valid' or 'Looks Valid' results.

Many thanks.
 

stanbusk

Administrator
Staff member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

eMail Verifier marks an address as 'Looks valid' when it can't fully determine if it is valid or not. Either the server responds nothing or is one of those servers that say yes to everything. Indeed you may get a bounce for those 'Looks valid'. You can get more information on this here. You will also get bounces for over quota accounts, when a mailbox is full, if your message has been flagged as spam, if you or your mail server has been blacklisted...etc... Also note that many servers will send soft bounces when they have problems relaying messages. Those bounces can be ignored. Anyway I recommend you to use eMail Bounce Handler. Using eMail Bounce Handler is explained here.
 

halfaneighth

New Member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

I wish it would mark addresses it cannot fully verify as 'Looks Valid' but my version actually marks them as 'Valid' and I can't understand why.

When I export only "Valid' results, Hotmail.com, for example, are in there.

I can't find an option for telling the software to mark these addresses as 'Looks Valid'. The only options seem to be 'Valid' or 'Bad'.
 

halfaneighth

New Member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

Thank you for your help so far, I just have one more question...

There is a list of non-cooperating servers in the 'Rules' panel, however I gather that this is by no means an exhaustive list and that the likes of gmail and many others are also non-cooperating servers.

So what I'm trying to work out is that if a non-cooperating server is not listed in the rules panel and the eMail Verifier tries to verify an email address on that server, for example, "paul@gmail.com", what can we take from the outcome of that verification?

Specifically, will eMail Verifier only mark an email address as 'Valid' if either it has fully determined it to be valid or its server is listed in the rules panel, or could it potentially mark an email address as 'Valid' even if it isn't truly valid nor listed in the rules panel? Or would it simply mark these email addresses as 'Looks Valid'?

In other words, if eMail Verifier can't fully verify such an email address, can we be confident that it will mark it as 'Looks Valid', therefore allowing us to have more confidence in the 'Valid' results as long as there are no exceptions listed in the 'Rules' panel?

I'm really hoping to work this out because my list is largely made up of hotmail, yahoo, gmail and so on, and in the verification results I see some yahoo, gmail and so on in 'Valid' and some 'Looks Valid'.

If I could confidently use only 'Valid' results where there are no exceptions listed in the 'Rules' panel it would really help

Thanks again!
 

stanbusk

Administrator
Staff member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

eMail Verifier will mark an address as valid either because it is 100% sure the address is valid or it was marked that way by a rule. Results marked by a rule are what they are, addresses you will never know if they are good or not until you use them, you will then collect a bounce and clean your list of it. If you prefer not using a rule and verify an address from a non-cooperative server, since they do not cooperate you will spend time for nothing and at the end the address will be marked as good or looks good.
 

halfaneighth

New Member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

Hi stanbusk, thanks for getting back to me so quickly.

Your patience is hugely appreciated but please can you clarify something you said.

You began by saying:

"eMail Verifier will mark an address as valid either because it is 100% sure the address is valid or it was marked that way by a rule."

When I read this I thought you had answered my question perfectly – that the software would not mark a potentially invalid email address as valid unless there was a rule for that server. However, you concluded by saying:

"If you prefer not using a rule and verify an address from a non-cooperative server, since they do not cooperate you will spend time for nothing and at the end the address will be marked as good or looks good."

This seems to suggest that the software may in fact mark a potentially invalid email address as valid even if there is no rule for that server

I'm simply trying to find out if addresses from a non-cooperative servers are sometimes marked as "Valid" even if there is no rule for that server?

Thanks
 

stanbusk

Administrator
Staff member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

Non-cooperative means that the server will never tell you if an address is good or not, as a result if no rule is present eMail Verifier will mark at good. eMail Verifier will never mark an address as bad until it is 100% sure it is bad.

We use eMail Verifier as well and we don't want to lose addresses, when there is a doubt lets wait for a bounce.
 

steveb-ci

New Member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

Non-cooperative means that the server will never tell you if an address is good or not, as a result if no rule is present eMail Verifier will mark at good
Hi Stan. You say EV will mark non-co-operative emails as good, but is that valid, or looks like valid?

In the rules setting there is the option to mark an email as valid or bad, but not looks like valid. Any reason for this?

Thanks.
 

stanbusk

Administrator
Staff member
Re: How to reduce the chance of bounces to an absolute minim

Yes, it will mark it as valid if a rule is used. 'Looks valid' is a result used on a real situation, when eMail Verifier has actually connected to a mail server and got some results.

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