Delivering through AOL isn't easy: Dot Email report

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AOL is the toughest nut to crack for e-mail deliverability for marketers, while Google's Gmail is the easiest, according to a recent survey by online community for e-mail marketers Dot Email.

The report found that e-mails that are not relevant to users are being marked as SPAM, which is affecting deliverability rates of future e-mail campaigns. According to the poll, 38.4 percent of e-mail marketers think that AOL has the lowest deliverability and 7.1 percent of respondents think that Google's Gmail had the lowest.

"The market penetration for Gmail is not the same for AOL or Hotmail," said Elie Ashery, president of Gold Lasso. "There is more volume on AOL, as some people have had AOL since its inception. Gmail also recently bought Postini, the largest filtering company, so they probably have a better handle on the technology for spam filtering."

MSN/Hotmail were a close second with 21.4 percent of the e-mail marketers saying that this ISP had the lowest deliverability rates. Seventeen percent thought Earthlink had bad delivery and 16 percent thought it was Yahoo according to the poll.

"For AOL and Hotmail, marketers have to push harder for recipients to put them on the friends or save sender list in the opt-in process," Ashery added. "This will help to use the dynamic content feature so marketers can send them instructions on how to get on the save sender list. The better the opt-in methodology, the better the deliverability you will have. Having double opt-in keeps down suppression; making sure that the list is clean is another major factor."

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