European consumers fail to receive more than one in six legitimate marketing e-mails according to data from Return Path, an e-mail solutions provider. These missing e-mails include those that have gone completely missing and those that are destined straight for the spam folder, and are unlikely ever to be read.
Europe wide, only 82.2% of e-mail reached the subscribers inbox, down from 85.4% in the second half of 2009. The UK fared slightly better than the European average with 86.5% being delivered. Of those classed undelivered, 6.1% went to spam folders whilst 7.4% went missing completely, which usually means being blocked by the subscribers ISP before the e-mail gets delivered.
"Around 98 per cent of all email is spam. ISPs have to weed through it to try and discover what they should deliver and what they should protect their customers from. The problem for marketers is that legitimate permission-based emails are often identified as spam by ISPs, and subsequently directed to the spam folder or blocked at ISP-level, so the messages vanish into the ether."Guy Shelton, (VP for European Sales and Service) Return Path
Demon Internet were the worst offender in Europe for missing e-mails, blocking 27% of e-mail sent to its customers. BT marked the most e-mails as spam in the UK with 19% ending up in customers' spam folders. The top 10 UK ISPs for missing e-mail are listed below.
|ISP||Missing (%)||Spam (%)||Delivered (%)|
|NTL World (Virgin)||7.9||5.27||86.83|
|Windows Live / Hotmail||4.66||9.11||86.24|
With spam e-mail such an endemic problem, we recommend that users always check their spam folder if they suspect an e-mail has not been received. If you suspect your e-mail provider is blocking e-mails, you may want to look at using an alternate e-mail provider.