What is Email Blacklist and how to avoid it?

You hit on an email blacklist. Your email campaigns have come to a screeching halt and you are questioning ‘How did this happen?’ There are many ways that it could have happened. But let’s start with how to get your name prevented from that blacklist.



First, you want to check all of the blacklists that your sending IP address and domain are currently on. You can do that by using any free tool that will give you a list of every blacklist your IP is listed on across the internet.

Once you know, which blacklists you are listed on, then you have the difficult task of going through all of the different blacklist websites and figuring out how to separate yourself from the list. This can be as simple as filling out a removal form. Other blacklists are set up uniquely. For these lists, all you can do is wait to get your IP removed from the blacklist. This can take anywhere from several days to a few weeks.

A typical blacklisting (email blacklist) lasts between 3-7 days. But, some are known to last up to 15 days. Many blacklists allow you to request a delisting rather than waiting X number of days for the auto-delisting process. When you have computerized monitoring in place for your mailing IPs, you can get an instant email notification of which IP address is having problems. This way you can delay your email campaigns going out from that specific IP address to avoid a delivery failure.

Once you are aware of which IP address is a problem for you, you can then request for delisting. You need to remember this, if you do not change the situation which caused you to be blacklisted in the first place, you will continue to be blacklisted. If you request too many de-listings from the same IP address, you could be permanently listed. A permanent listing means they will reject your request for any more de-listings.

So now that you know how to get delisted, let us concentrate on the other question…


How did you get Blacklisted?

If you can find out why you were blacklisted, you can get yourself off the list and stop your site from getting relisted. When you start noticing why you were listed, you should make sure your network and mail server are configured accurately. Make sure all the details are in line for resolving issues, as commanded by the blacklist that you are listed on. For example, they may ask you to check your SMTP banners or edit your reverse and forward DNS records.

Reasons why you could have been blacklisted:

  • You purchased a bad list full of spam trap emails Your Domain is hosting Malware
  • Sent to too many Spam trap emails
  • Your mail system is hosting an open relay
  • You spam messaged your current list


Once you know why you were blacklisted, make the needed changes then fill out the forms to get yourself off of the blacklist. If you truly did nothing wrong and made an honest mistake, let the Blacklist managers know that you made an honest mistake. The further open and direct with them you are the better. Being upfront with a blacklist will likely speed up the delisting process.

Keep in mind that their job is to reduce spam and malicious emails from making them into innocent users’ inboxes. Spam is a big problem, and they are helping the world prevent cybercrime; so, though it may be inconvenient for you, they are only here to assist email users to have a safer inbox.


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