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I am trying out some new ideas involving HTML emails that will be sent from my site. I am sending lots of test emails to my Gmail and Yahoo accounts, all of which go straight to the spam folder. Although this is OK for now, but I am afraid that Google or Yahoo will classify my domain as an email spammer.

Is there a good way to send lots of test emails and not have Google or other recipient email system filter it? This might involve an account setting, sandbox accounts, special email header, or to/from setting (I'm really not sure.)

I am using PHP to send out the email. Here is a link to another post that shows my code:

http://codereview.stackexchange.com/questions/45215/good-html-email-template

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You should mention which technology is being used to generate and send the emails. –  PatomaS Mar 27 at 1:03
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3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I'm going to break your question into two parts:

  1. Where can I send test email?

Send test email to a disposable email address service. [1] These services automatically create an inbox for any email you send to them. You can then read the messages in the inbox through their web site, without registration and without a password.

For example, I can send an email to to foo@<some-provider>, then go to http://www.<some-provider>/foo/inbox to read the message.

Note that the messages are only stored for a short time, so it's best to check shortly after you've sent them. Also note that the inboxes are completely public and anyone can read the messages you send, so don't send anything you want to keep private.

  1. How can I avoid having my messages marked as spam?

This is much trickier, because no email service wants to reveal exactly how they combat spam. Here are just a few things that you should do:

  • Use double-opt in: When someone signs up for your email, send them an email message with a verification link. Don't send them any additional emails unless they verify their account first.
  • Don't wait too long to send messages so that users don't forget that they signed up for your service and then complain that they're getting spam.
  • Include an opt-out link in every message you send.
  • Stick to the schedule your recipients agreed to. If your recipients signed up for monthly messages, don't start sending messages every week.
  • Set up a Sender Policy Framework (SPF) Record.

This isn't everything, but should give you a good start.

[1]: Google for "disposable email service".

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Is the sending email address in the contact lists of your Yahoo and Gmail receiving accounts? This might avoid the spam treatment.

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Can you post an example email showing what you have been sending? For gmail going into spam and marking a few emails as not spam might do the trick, the same thing should work for yahoo mail.

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My test emails just say "test" in various colors and sizes. I added a link to my email code in my original question –  Hoytman Mar 27 at 13:18
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