Why Is List Cleaning Important To Improve Your Email Marketing?

Why is email list cleaning important?

If you’re running an online business, eCommerce store, or any other type of business where you are contacting leads and potential customers through email marketing, chances are you already have an email marketing list. 

Perhaps you’re using email marketing for your Shopify store to run sales campaigns or retrieve customers who have abandoned their carts. While building an email marketing list is important for growth, maintaining and cleaning your email list is just as important. In this article, we’ll tell you why.

Clean as you go and save money

Growing your marketing lists might seem like a key objective. However, as you grow your email lists, you should also keep them clean by filtering out invalid or inactive email recipients. 

Since many of the popular email marketing software charge by the number of contacts, you can save money on keeping your marketing list accurate, trimmed and up to date. 

By cleaning your email lists on a frequent basis, you will also be able to keep better track of your campaign performance. With more accurate data on how your recipients respond to or interact with your emails, you can allocate resources to create engaging content for your customers.

Focus on quality over quantity

Make effective use of your email marketing by focusing on reaching out to leads and customers who are actually engaging with your content. This will eventually lead to more conversions, such as clicks or sales, rather than a large audience who receive yet do not engage with your content.

If you’re already using email marketing as one of your marketing strategies, you probably already have an email list of people who have given you permission to contact them. If the people on your list aren’t receiving, opening, or engaging with your emails, you might want to consider deleting or archiving those email addresses. 

By doing so, you can instead focus on “real” and engaged subscribers that are more likely to open your email and act, thus, increasing your conversion rate. 

Get accurate data of email marketing performance

By focusing on a smaller list of active and valid subscribers rather than “vanity subscribers,” you will get more insightful data on how your email marketing campaigns are performing. 

With better metrics on your email marketing strategy’s overall performance, you can focus your time and resources on targeting more engaged customers with an interest in your content and services.

Increase your email deliverability

Email deliverability is a metric to measure how successful an email campaign is with regard to being received in the recipient’s inbox. Emails that end up in spam or where the email address you use is incorrect will not be delivered to the recipient and, therefore, not opened. 

Cleaning your email lists can help reduce the bounce rate of your email campaigns, which increases your email deliverability. In other words, it can be beneficial for your eCommerce business to implement email list cleaning measures to prevent your Shopify marketing emails ending up in spam.

Avoid bad sender reputation

Another factor that impacts email deliverability is your sender reputation. So, how do email providers calculate a sender’s reputation? 

Email providers such as Google, Outlook, and iCloud among others, want to keep user experience satisfactory, which is why their servers have spam filters that detect and flag IP addresses and domain names. 

If your domain name or IP address is flagged as a sender of unsolicited messages, you will increase your bad sender reputation with these email service providers. This means that your domain name or emails sent from your IP address will automatically end up in the spam folder of the recipient.

Clean as you go to avoid these 6 sender issues

By implementing a frequent email list cleaning routine, you can get more out of your email campaigns while at the same time avoiding some common sender issues.

Here are some issues a sender can incur by not keeping the email list cleaned.

Hard bounces

Hard bounces are permanent errors where the email has failed to be delivered to the recipient’s email address. This is caused by either sending the email to an incorrect or invalid email address. 

With hard bounces, your recipients do not receive your email campaigns and, therefore, never get the chance to open them. This means that you have no chance of getting either clicks or conversions from these recipients.

Spam folder placement

If your emails end up in the spam folder, it means that your recipient's email provider platform has flagged your email as spam, even though it might not necessarily be spam. This can happen if you have a bad sender reputation which automatically directs your domain or IP address to the receiver's spam folder rather than their inbox. 

Emails that end up in the spam folder are less likely to be opened, read, or even found since spam folders tend to overflow with other emails.


An unsubscription occurs each time a contact chooses to actively unsubscribe from your newsletter. This can be due to several reasons, such as your emails being irrelevant to the recipient, or the recipient thinking you’re sending too many emails.

Unsubscriptions also because of loss of interest, so you should be aware that some unsubscriptions are bound to happen. However, if you notice a pattern of frequent or high-volume unsubscriptions related to frequency and content, you might want to take a closer look at the specific cause.

Weak brand reputation

As a brand, your reputation plays a key role in whether customers are willing to keep buying goods or services from your business or not. A weak brand reputation means that customers and potential customers aren’t sure of what you’re selling and why it would be of interest to them. 

Weak brand reputation can be caused by many things, such as unclear communication or lack of information. 

Wrong KPI (key performance indicators) metrics

Key performance indicators are a type of value that helps you measure progress. When creating and running email marketing campaigns, having accurate KPI metrics is essential for measurable success. Having the wrong KPI metrics means that resources such as time, money and competence are wasted rather than allocated accurately to boost conversions and achieve results. 

Some examples of marketing KPIs can be total sales, revenue and profit, social media following, appointment bookings, phone calls, and other contact enquiries. 

Increased costs

As mentioned earlier, many email marketing software systems charge based on number of contacts and sometimes also email volume. Klaviyo is a popular option for email marketing campaigns, and they charge based on your email volume. 

Having many email addresses that are incorrect, not in use, or where the users are not interested in your products will lead to unnecessary increased costs. The same is true if you send out hundreds or thousands of marketing emails where most of the emails fail to be delivered or remain unopened. 


Cleaning your email marketing list for your Shopify or eCommerce email campaigns is essential for growth, ensuring deliverability, and avoiding weak brand reputation among other reasons. 

As a sender, make sure to focus on quality over quantity by having a small yet engaged list of recipients in your email marketing campaign. With this strategy, you will save time, resources, and money that would otherwise be spent on vanity subscribers, hard bounces, and other uninterested customers.

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