Spam filters prove detrimental to email fundraising

“One in eight emails never reaches an inbox.” So, what does this mean for email fundraising, which brought in 1/3 of online fundraising revenue in 2013?


According to the 2015 Nonprofit Email Deliverability Study, nonprofits with an email list of 100,000 people send an average of 24 emails a year. Every 1% of emails that end up in your junk mail result in $1,203.84 potential revenue a year.

That’s approximately $15,000 in lost revenue a year, all because of spam filters.

Let’s face it. I, myself have been a nonprofit culprit, deleting emails that don’t look familiar. Trying to stay on top of emails, I must also admit, I don’t take the two seconds to read it and find out which organization it’s coming from and assume if it looks unfamiliar, it’s spam.

If you’re a nonprofit organization trying to solicit to donors via email, then don’t let your emails end up in their junk mail.

Here are five steps to keep your emails out of donor’s junk mail inspired by EveryAction and my own thoughts:

  1. Ask your donor email list to confirm their address is correct.
  2. Send different messages to donors who haven’t responded or engaged in your original emails.
  3. Keep all emails consistent in structure, color and your organization logo visible, so donors don’t mistake your emails for spam.
  4. Think about sending, “welcome emails,” so donors know what to expect from your organization by giving donors a sneak peak of what your emails will look like.
  5. Check with your email service provider to find out about your email deliver-ability and other factors that can help make sure donors see your emails.

Don’t let spam filters sabotage your email fundraising efforts!

Eden Youngberg is a senior Journalism and Mass Communications major pursuing certificates in Philanthropy and Entrepreneurship. She is involved in Public Relations Student Society of America and is currently working as a fundraising intern at AMPERAGE Marketing. She hopes to be involved in nonprofits after graduation in May.


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