How can I have low inbox placement but a high Sender Score?

There are several factors that influence or contribute to seeing a high Sender Score and low inbox placement.

  • Not all mailbox providers and spam filter companies contribute data to the reputation network that is used to calculate the Sender Score. A mailbox provider that doesn’t participate in Return Path’s reputation network may filter your email to the spam folder based on your sending reputation metrics and filtering rules they have established. If your sending reputation metrics are good at the mailbox providers that do contribute to the reputation network, then you may see a high sender score even if you see low inbox placement at other mailbox providers.
  • For mailbox providers that use Sender Score, it is only a part of the variables used in making filtering decisions. How it is used by the mailbox providers differs and your Sender Score may be given higher or lower priority depending on how aggressively they filter spam.
  • The volume of data you send to the mailbox providers contributing data to the reputation network varies based on the makeup of your subscriber list and the volume and frequency of the email you send to those subscribers. If the volume sent to the reputation network is small relative to your entire list file at any given time, then you may see low inbox placement at some mailbox providers and a high sender score.
  • Your inbox placement can vary from day to day depending on how each mailbox provider decides to filter your email based on numerous data points related to your sending reputation, email infrastructure, subscriber engagement and content. Data points used by a mailbox provider or spam filter company to filter your email may not be used to calculate your sender score. If Sender Score does not use these data points, then the Sender Score will not be impacted.

It’s important to know that Sender score is a trustworthiness indicator, similar to a credit score, that is calculated from over 100 email variables gathered from numerous data sources. While there is a correlation to inbox placement based on your score (a higher score generally means higher inbox placement), your Sender Score is not an inbox predictor or guarantee of inbox placement.


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