So, you went and purchased a list. Now what? It's time to clean your email list! Wait, before you rush into getting your list cleaned lets take a look at the options. What new bulk email service users do not realize is some ESP's (Email Software Providers) provide this service for free. Make sure you check with the mass email service you are going with and see if they offer it. If you go to an outside source, the cost for cleaning a list is typically $250 per million. Make yourself look good in your company by going with a bulk email service that does this for you.
What exactly is list suppression, list hygiene or cleaning a list?
Performing automated list hygiene helps keep the IP's you are sending off of clean and avoiding becoming blacklisted. It is the backbone of continuously hitting the inbox and getting through to ISP's. Scrubbing a list takes out duplicates, spam traps, complainers, honey pots, hard bounces, and non-deliverables.
Where does a suppression list come into play then?
First, lets explain a suppression list. A suppression list contains all the known addresses of spam traps, complainers, honey pots, hard bounces, and non-deliverables. This is what your list is run against when it is cleaned. There are two forms of a suppression list. The first is the suppression file generated by someone else that contains all addresses mentioned before. The second is a self generated suppression list. This is where all your unsubscribers and newly discovered spam traps, honey pots, complainers, hard bounces, and non-deliverables will go. This type of suppression file should automatically be updating your list after the original cleaning. It is the difference between just starting clean and staying clean. New spam traps and honey pots are created everyday. It is important to get them off your list once they are found.
All in all, being successful with any bulk email service means keeping your list clean to avoid becoming blacklisted and unable to send.