After I click send, how fast will emails hit the inbox?


At ActiveCampaign, we pride ourselves on offering fast delivery times with your emails. We’re able to do this by managing your campaign and email sends through our own IPs and servers, rather than relying on a 3rd party service to manage the sending for us. This allows us immediate access to detailed bounce and sending logs. However, there are some factors that can impact how quickly your emails land in an inbox after you click “Send.” For example, the quality of your subscriber list, your domain reputation, and even the time of day or year can all impact your email delivery speed.

It’s important to note that the speed in which an email lands in a contact’s inbox after you click send may be completely unrelated to deliverability. For example, if you are sending a campaign to a complex segment or a very large list, it may take a little longer to reach a contact’s inbox due to processing time. In addition, complex dynamic content or a misconfigured automation can cause delays with delivery times. We recommend checking to see if any of these factors are at play if you are experiencing a delay in email sending.

If you have experienced a sending delay, please reach out to our Customer Experience Team with a specific example of a contact who had the delay and we can help determine exactly where the slowdown occurred.

Shared IP address

Most of our customers use a shared IP pool to send their emails. A shared IP pool consists of multiple senders transmitting their messages over the same sending path, and customers with similar sending health are grouped together on these IPs. The vast majority of our customers benefit from these default shared IPs because they have excellent, long-standing reputations with all major inbox providers and are kept extremely warm. However, there still may be occasional fluctuations in delivery due to an honest mistake made by a customer who shares your IP pool. While we have a sophisticated backend system to help prevent this from happening as much as possible, there is always a small risk that you’ll be impacted.

If you meet our requirements, you might be eligible to use a dedicated IP address for a $750 fee. However, depending on your reputation and how frequently you send to your list, having a dedicated IP can either help or harm your deliverability.

Learn more about shared and dedicated IP addresses.

Your sending domain reputation

Mailbox providers are focused on your own sending domain reputation in addition to your sending IP reputation. Your domain reputation is determined by you and your sending practices. For example, if you are sending good content regularly to a list of opted-in contacts that engage with (open or click) your emails, then you’re likely to have a good domain reputation. Having a good sending domain reputation will lead to faster delivery times as you will be placed in the same shared sending IP pool with other customers who also have good sending domains.

You can use Google Postmaster Tools to find out your domain reputation. If you discover that you have a Medium, Low, or even Bad domain reputation, there are steps you can take to improve. For example, you can use our Engagement Management tool to quickly remove unengaged contacts from your list and track contacts’ engagement over time with our Engagement Tagging Automations.

Inbox Providers

Each inbox provider is capable of receiving messages at a different rate. For example, Gmail is able to receive a vast quantity of messages every minute and we will send to Gmail at a very high rate, whereas Yahoo tends to be much slower. It takes Yahoo's spam filters much longer to process messages and they cannot accept as many messages per minute as Gmail, especially during a peak sending time like a holiday weekend. Yahoo is much more susceptible to slowdowns during busy times than Gmail.

We have fine-tuned algorithms on our end that calculate the optimal rate at which to send to each inbox provider. For example, we may send x messages/minute to Gmail, y messages/minute to Yahoo, and z messages/minute to Outlook. We have thousands of these rules set up for every inbox provider so that you are never sending too fast or too slow based on the specific rules for that inbox provider. These rules are constantly in flux and we are constantly tweaking them for optimal performance.

List quality

A good quality list consists of opted-in contacts who you send to on a regular basis and who engage with (open and click) your emails. It also means having a list with low bounce rates and no to low spam complaints. Having a good, healthy list will establish great sender health for you and your domain. In addition, you’ll be placed on a shared IP pool with other great senders, which will help speed up your delivery times.

Learn how to remove unengaged contacts from your list.

Learn how to track engagement with Engagement Tagging automations

Learn how to reduce a high spam complaint rate

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