Disposable email addresses (DEAs) are nothing new, but for business owners, project managers and IT specialists, it can spell disaster for email marketing campaigns. Understanding what they are, why they are used and how they affect businesses can help leaders adjust their strategy when collecting addresses.
What disposable email addresses are all about
Nowadays, most people have personal and business email addresses they use regularly. As the Internet gained popularity, it brought with it a rise of issues. Websites that made use of discussion forums, newsletters and e-commerce started requiring sign-ups for access to content or special offers. This resulted in email owners being inundated with large numbers of emails on a daily basis; many of which were spam.
To combat this annoyance, and as an added measure of security against identity theft, email service providers began offering disposable email addresses free of charge. Disposable, one-time, instant, temporary or fake email addresses are just that; they are impermanent and only usable for a very short time.
How disposable email addresses affect businesses
Although disposable email addresses work wonders for consumers wanting to keep their personal accounts safe and clean, their use can wreak havoc on a business’s email marketing campaigns. Some users have their emails forwarded to real email addresses where they can control what they receive and read. Others never read their emails or let their service provider expire them within 15 minutes to an hour after receiving them.
Disposable email addresses can drastically thwart efforts to reach potential customers—and it can also skew email list analytics. In other words, a business owner may have thousands of subscribers on his or her list with only a small percentage of them actually reading their emails. In this case, quantity over quality loses. Real emails rather than fake emails can be the difference between quality leads and worthless lists.
Ways to combat disposable email addresses
Fighting disposable email addresses isn’t always easy, but there are several ways to increase the likelihood of generating real email addresses from potential customers. For existing lists, email validation determines email address authenticity, accuracy, and deliverability, returning detailed information and error codes. The email validation API performs over 50 email address verification tests, calculates a quality score (accept or reject), auto-corrects common domain misspellings and syntax errors, and removes extraneous characters.
To prevent the continued collection of useless email addresses, encourage users to submit real ones. Providing valuable content is the proven way to keep the attention of those who sign up, whether they use a real or disposable address. Marketing managers can also inhibit the use of temporary emails by using online sign-up forms that make use of email validation in real time to determine if an email address is disposable and block it from being submitted.