What should I do with hard bounces?

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What I do now is review them, and correct and reactivate any with obvious typos. Then I look to see if there are an unusually high number with the same domain name, which could indicate a server issue at a particular company.

But what then? If I delete them, and then the person tries to resubscribe, they will get a message saying sorry, this address can't be re-added. I hesitate to opt them out because it doesn't seem appropriate and I wouldn't be able to add them back. But if I just leave them as error status, and then they resubscribe, they're still in error status and won't get our emails anyway. What to do?
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Laurie T.

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Posted 3 years ago

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Emily Hollingsworth, Alum

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Official Response
Hi Laurie -- Great question, as always. :)

Typically, my approach to error addresses would be to leave them alone. Our servers and backlogs do the hard work for you of identifying and assigning the error status to bounced addresses. I do think it's good practice to review those for easy fixes, like typos, but the majority of hard bounces are there for good reason. We can't get through to that address for some reason or another.

You're correct that signing up again does not reactivate an error address. However, if someone in error status is missing your emails, they'll like reach out and you can reactivate them! Opting them out is a good idea if you do want them to be able to sign themselves back up, but this makes it tricky to track how many people are truly opting out of your mailings. 

All that to say, it really comes down to personal preference. I'd say trust the status, but you can play around here and see what works best for you in the long run!