Confirmed Opt-In Adoption Lower Than You Think

E-mail marketers often discuss confirmed, or double, opt-in as the golden standard for e-mail list management. However in a survey of 523 e-mail marketers conducted by e-mail marketing agency eROI, only 30 percent were found to use the practice.

The proportion of e-mail senders using confirmed opt-in for sign-up is below where the industry should be, according to the findings. Jeff Mills, an e-mail analyst at eROI, said some businesses are reluctant to embrace the practice because it adds an extra step for consumers, and can result in fewer new subscribers than single opt-in.

When consumers opt-out of e-mail lists, 30 percent of marketers fail to remove their names from other systems that share the same lists. Mills said, “You have the possibility of not adhering to CAN-SPAM compliance.”

Failing to share opt-out lists with other CRM departments has further implications. “It’s not just a legal standpoint, but also a brand standpoint,” said Dylan Boyd, VP of sales and strategy at eROI.

Consumers who opt-out of e-mail may be interested in being contacted through another channel, yet 90 percent of marketers don’t follow-up with opt-outs to attempt to determine a better approach.

Of the 30 percent who use confirmed opt-in, three quarters of respondents have between one and three site mechanisms for e-mail sign-ups, and 4 percent provide more than 10.

A majority of respondents said they provide value incentives to subscribers at a low cost to the business. Examples of incentives include newsletter subscriptions (88 percent), access to preferred content (29 percent), discounts/coupons (24 percent), and contests (22 percent).

The survey was conducted online. Many of the 523 respondents had marketing operations in other channels: 40 percent in direct mail, 21 percent in call centers, 9 percent in catalogs, and about 1 percent in mobile marketing. EROI conducts the survey annually.

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