Most email marketers have probably encountered temporary emails, also known as disposable emails, in their marketing funnel. But what exactly is a temporary email and what can marketers do about them? Are there solutions to automatically exclude them from your marketing funnel? If so, how efficient are they and why haven't you implemented them yet?
First of all, we should start by defining what a disposable email is. Disposable emails are email addresses that generate a temporary inbox used by an unidentified or anonymous user on a temporary period of time. Let's take a look at an example.
What is a temporary email?
Let's say you are looking to buy a car. You go to a website, complete the form and at the end of the form you are asked to give your email address to receive updates about the car. If you don’t want to actually subscribe to those email notifications but are required to input an email address, one thing you could do is to create a temporary one. Disposable email services offer that exact solution. Once you create a temp email address, you are redirected to an inbox that you will be able to access only for a few hours. This temporary inbox is usually used to keep the website owner in touch with you until you decide to buy a car or not. Once the time period has expired, the mailbox is deleted and is not accessible anymore.
Based on this example, you can easily understand why collecting temporary email addresses is a problem for email marketers. Not only are companies no longer able to connect with their contacts, but having a lot of them in an email database can negatively impact email marketing metrics, email deliverability, and the sender’s reputation.
Why are these temporary emails something that marketers need to address? The main reason is that these are contacts that aren’t usually valuable in a marketing database. They might not even be added to an email list in some marketing platform. So, once they are deleted, the email addresses are gone forever.
If you're a B2B business, you might be thinking that this issue is not important because you don't sell cars and therefore you don't need to worry about this. But you might be wrong.
Let’s say that you manage a B2B business that offers a free trial version for your product, for example. You might be interested in capturing the email addresses of your potential customers. While this is not a new strategy, a lot of companies have to deal with temporary emails that are not added to their email service provider.
How to deal with disposable emails
There are two ways that you can take care of these disposable emails. Each of them comes with benefits and you can identify the one that works best for you based on how technically savvy you are or based on how much you rely on content to capture email subscribers.
The first and most practical solution is to put in place a filtering system that will allow you to automatically block temporary email addresses from being used on your forms. Email verification solutions, like the one offered by DataValidation, have a built-in real-time email verification API that you can integrate with the email field on your forms. Because everything happens in real-time, you avoid having to manually check your email database for disposable addresses and segment them out.
Using an email verification solution is the simplest and most efficient way of blocking users from inputting disposable email addresses in your lead generation or contact forms. This solution also enables you to keep your email lists clean and stop worrying about the potential negative consequences of collecting undeliverable contacts.
Content is king
The second solution is a bit trickier and depends on your overall email marketing strategy. If you have a strong inbound marketing strategy and are allowing prospects to subscribe to a newsletter, the incentive alone might help you avoid having to deal with temporary email addresses. But that’s never a guarantee. Furthermore, you should build a powerful and efficient content strategy that delivers you results, not just protects you from unwanted email contacts. But the added benefit will come in handy.
Delivering high-value and relevant content will most likely attract engaged users and subscribers. If your value proposition is not just clear but easily understandable, people will be more inclined to want to learn more and to remain in the loop.
The obvious solution
If you have already encountered the issue of temporary emails in your marketing funnel, besides the two clear solutions that we have already discussed, we have another piece of advice. Make sure that you are only requiring an email address when the incentive warrants it. If you are in the habit of making the email field in your forms mandatory for viewing low-quality gated content, maybe reassess your strategy. If the users that land on your website is not encouraged to fill in their real email address, try to take some mitigating actions to improve their experience or the quality of the content that you are delivering.
Want to find out if your email list contains disposable addresses? With DataValidation you get that and so much more. You can learn which addresses are deliverable and which not, which ones are based in the EU, and which outside of the EU, for GDPR purposes, you can identify role-based emails and more. By signing up today you can get up to 500 email verifications for free. Learn more about email verification and the way DataValidation protects your email deliverability and improves your sender reputation.