Email Onboarding FAQs

In this article, we answer the most common questions around email onboarding and setup. To get started with email onboarding on MoEngage, you can reach out to your Implementation Manager or Customer Success Manager, share a filled copy of the Email Onboarding Questionnaire, and we will take it from there.

Note: This is only required if you want to make use of MoEngage email delivery. If you want to use your own email provider, refer to Connector Configuration.

Promotional and Transactional Emails

What is the distinction between promotional and transactional emails?

Promotional emails are typically used to inform your customers about new arrivals, offers, sales, and so on. The intent behind a promotional email is to increase awareness about your products/services and engage and retain customers with the eventual goal of generating revenue. Transactional emails are typically sent when an action is performed by the user or on the user's account, such as information about purchases, subscriptions, account activity, one-time passwords, invoices, shipping or billing information, and so on.

Should I be using a sub-domain?

You can use your root domain to send transactional emails. However, it is a good practice to use a sub-domain for all other types of emails. Promotional emails have a higher potential to impact the domain reputation from which they're sent. This has a direct correlation with deliverability and inbox placement of the emails sent from that domain. If both transactional and promotional emails are sent from the same domain, poor performance of your promotional campaign can impact the performance of your transactional emails.

Basic Setup

Why do I need SPF, DKIM, and DMARC?

Sender Policy Framework (SPF) and DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) are needed to authenticate the emails so that the recipient servers (Yahoo, Microsoft, Gmail, and so on.) recognize that the emails are indeed sent by you and that message was not altered in transit.

Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC) is an email authentication and reporting policy that is built on top of SPF and DKIM. DMARC instructs the ISP on how to handle an email that fails DKIM/SPF checks. Strict DMARC policies ensure that spammers are unable to impersonate you.  

Does MoEngage configure SPF, DKIM, and DMARC?

If you are using MoEngage email delivery, we will generate and share DNS records that need to be updated for your domain. If you are using your own connector, check with your vendor. 

Do I get to configure feedback loops?

Yes, MoEngage leverages Feedback Loops (FBLs) supported by our mailing partners, Sendgrid and SES. Traditional FBLs, such as Yahoo and Microsoft, share the details of users who have reported the email as spam. MoEngage updates reachability for such users in the platform and suppresses them in future campaigns.

Google, on the other hand, does not share such details; hence only spam complaints percentage can be viewed on the Google Postmaster tool. If you are using your own connector, check with your vendor about setting up the feedback loop.

IPs and Domains

Does MoEngage allocate shared IPs or dedicated IPs?

If you are using MoEngage email delivery, we allocate dedicated IPs. If you are using your own connector, you will need to check with your vendor.

What is the difference between Dedicated and Shared IPs?

Dedicated IPs Shared IPs
Are reserved only for a particular sender. The benefit of using such IPs is that you have full control over that IP's reputation. Are common between multiple senders. Since the IPs are shared, the performance of each of the senders has an impact on the IP's reputation.
Require warm-up and ramp-up, as well as a consistent sending pattern to maintain the IP reputation. Do not require IP warm-up, but domain warm-up will be required if you want to send emails from a new domain.
Are suited for senders with high volumes and consistent sending patterns. Are suited for senders with lower volumes and infrequent sending patterns.

How many IPs would I need?

The number of IPs required largely depends on the peak volume per day, sending frequency, audience quality, and target region. Our recommendation:

Daily Email Volume Number of IPs
500K 1
500K - 1.5 M 2
> 1.5 M 1 IP/ Million emails

 

Regional Domains - If there are a lot of regional domains (.pl, .de, .es, .it, .net, .hk, etc.) in the audience list, the required number of IPs increases as regional ISPs generally accept emails at a lower rate.  Similarly, Chinese domains (@163.com, @sina.com, @qq.com, @126.com, @yeah.net, @foxmail.com, @aliyun.com, and any emails ending with .cn) have an extremely low acceptance rate for IPs originating outside of China, hence a significant number of extra IPs would be required in such cases.

Note: Your MoEngage deliverability consultant will analyze your volume, sending pattern, and audience distribution and allocate the IPs as requiredIf you are using your own connector, you will need to check with your vendor. 

Is there a way for me to get pre-warmed IPs?

No. We ramp up each sender from scratch using their own emails. The only exception to this is if you have a dedicated SendGrid IP that is already warmed up. In such cases, the same can be migrated to your MoEngage account, and you can hit the ground running!

How many domains would I need?

The number of domains required largely depends on the peak volume per day, sending frequency,  and use cases. However, we recommend a minimum of two subdomains. One for the transactional emails and one for all other mailing needs.

Sender Frequency of sending Email Volume  Domain Recommendation
A NA  < 10K/day
  • One sub-domain for General/Smart Trigger and Flow campaigns
  • One sub-domain for transactional campaigns
B 1/month or less NA
  • One sub-domain for General/Smart Trigger and Flow campaigns
  • One sub-domain for transactional campaigns
C

4/month or more

> 100K/day

 

  • One sub-domain for general one-time campaigns
  • One sub-domain for event triggered and Flow campaigns
  • One sub-domain for transactional campaigns

Warm-Up and Ramp Up

Are Warm Up and Ramp Up the same?  

No, refer to the details below to understand the differences.

  Warm Up Ramp Up
What is it?

Is the process of building a positive reputation for any new domain/IP with the ISPs.

 

Is the process gradually scaling up to the volumes you intend to send from a domain and/or IP.

When is it required? Is required whenever you want to start sending emails from a new IP and/or domain. Is required if your sending volume is going to be >50% of your average peak volume or if you have yet to send any emails in 3+ weeks.
Why is it required?

Is required for you to ensure that your emails land in the inboxes of your customers.  Know more in the section below.

Is required for you to ensure timely delivery and inbox placement of your emails to your customers. Know more in the section below.

Why do I need to do warm-up?

ISPs are skeptics at best when it comes to deciding on emails' inbox placement. And while authentication (DKIM and SPF setup) is important, it is not enough for the ISPs to trust you. It needs to be built gradually by ensuring high engagement in your emails. Emails coming from a new IP/domain that hasn't built a good reputation as yet, ISPs might choose to handle your emails as below:

      • Only accept a small number of emails
      • Receive emails at a slow pace
      • Put all the emails in the spam folder
      • Put the first few emails in the inbox, monitor the engagement from the initial recipients, and then determine where to put the rest of the emails.
      • Block emails from you, if you try to send more than a smaller number

Note: Your reputation with the ISPs can take a hit with even a single bad campaign. Recovering from such a setback can take anywhere between 4-8 weeks.

How do I do warm-up?

As part of the warm-up, you will need to send relevant emails to a small volume of users who are most likely to engage. The exact amount of time required to do this will depend on the current reputation of your domain/IP and the performance of your campaigns. Below stated are some high-level guidelines:

  •  Send lower volumes to begin with, increase them gradually, and throttle your campaigns. Don’t worry about scaling up initially; instead, focus on generating positive engagement.
  • Send to users who are most likely to engage positively.
  • Pay attention to performance metrics, viz. delivery rate, open rate, click rate, spam complaints, and unsubscribes. Course correct based on your observations.
  • Check your reputation on postmaster sites, and inbox placement data on third-party sites. Course correct based on your observations.
  • Monitor your performance metrics and reputation closely for the first ten days. Once your reputation is stable, move to ramp up.

Why do I need to ramp up?

After building a good reputation, you need to increase the sending volume until you reach your daily average. And that’s ramp-up! While warm-up is slow, ramp-up tends to be faster. The pace of ramp-up, however, should be determined based on the campaigns' performance and domain/IP reputation during warm-up.

  • If they're excellent, you can ramp up much faster and take some calculated risks.
  • If they're average, ramp up at a breathable pace, and progress cautiously.
  • If either of them is bad, fix it first.

How should I ramp up?

Increase your daily sending volume by 30%-50% each day. Ensure that your performance doesn't drop and that the domain and IP reputation stays consistent.

What volume should I ramp up to?

Your intended daily/weekly/monthly volume defines the volume you should ramp up to. For example:

User base Peak Volume Ramp up plan
100K 100K Ramp up to 100K.
100K 50K  Ramp up to 50K.
100K General sending volume is 20K. Once a month, 100K. For general sending volume, 20K ramp-up will suffice.  For the monthly 100K send, you will need to use a segmented strategy.

Note: IPs start getting cold after two weeks, and thus higher infrequent volumes will require special handling.

How to control the volume during ramp-up?

This can be done in multiple ways:

  • Create smaller segments based on the daily prescribed volume.
  • Use control groups while creating campaigns.
  • If applicable, we will also enable back-end limits.

What is a scale-up plan? Is this different from ramp-up? 

While ramp-ups are done at the time of onboarding, scale-ups address the seasonality in sales that most businesses observe. The marketing efforts, as a result, also need to follow the same cycles. In peak seasons, your sending volumes can be higher than usual. To meet the same, the email sends need to be increased to those levels. This is known as a scale-up and is done in the weeks leading to the peak. 

Typically, a larger user base at such times includes lesser engaged users, and hence an integral part of the scale-up becomes segmenting such inactive users based on their last activity/inactivity, sign-up date, sign-up source, and so on. This helps avoid any negative impact of the scale-up on your domain's/IP's reputation. 

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