Yahoo, AOL changes affect your deliverability rates

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  • Updated 4 years ago
  • (Edited)
Hello, all! Yahoo has changed some of its authentication records for @yahoo.com and other related domains, which affects Emma customers who use a yahoo.com email address as their RSVP address. There are similar issues with Hotmail, MSN and Live.com addresses breaking SPF authentication. We advise changing your RSVP address from a yahoo.com address to one you have more control over and that’s a stronger representation of your brand, as you won’t be able to use yahoo.com email addresses as your RSVP address and enjoy what we’d consider healthy deliverability rates.

For the nitty-gritty:

Because you're sending through Emma’s servers, mail servers that check authentication for your yahoo.com RSVP will see that it’s broken and, based on Yahoo’s instructions, your message will be rejected. The short list of domains that check and that matter includes gmail.com, hotmail.com (any Microsoft domain, really), yahoo.com and aol.com, so it’s probably a majority of who you’re trying to send to.

Yahoo uses a new authentication technology called DMARC, which combines DKIM and SPF to give more comprehensive protection for your domain. It’s a technology that mainly benefits larger entities who are more at risk to be spoofed or have their domain otherwise used to trick people into trusting malicious messages. Yahoo has set one parameter of DMARC to tell all mail servers that if DMARC authentication fails for yahoo.com, the message should be rejected. At this time, any mail server checking for DMARC authentication will refuse any message Emma customers (and our competitors' customers) sent through our system using a yahoo.com email address as the RSVP.

For more about this change and DMARC details, check out Word to the Wise’s blog post.
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Posted 4 years ago

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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Hello again! AOL has made this change, too, following in Yahoo’s footsteps. This means that you can send an email from an @aol.com address only if you’re using AOL's system to do so. You can’t use an AOL address through an email service provider like Emma or any other third-party service.

You can read more about this change here, and we recommend not using a Yahoo or AOL address as your RSVP address. Here is how to change your RSVP address.

I’ve edited this conversation’s subject line to reflect this update.
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Laurelhurst School

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I'm terribly confused...it says Yahoo and AOL in this information, I've been sending successfully from a gmail account and now there's a red banner in my last step prior to sending that says "This domain has been known to cause delivery issues." 

What if I'm managing a list for a school, on a volunteer basis, using a generic gmail address. I don't have the option of using a @mycompany.com email. How much will this compromise my sending ability (or rather, the ability of the recipients who have signed up to receive the emails)??
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HIV Information for Myanmar [him]

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I have used a gmail address for my list postings for ten years. Must I change?
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Hi there! There are a handful of addresses that we recommend avoiding as your RSVP address. There’s a bit more information here, but the full list is @hotmail.com, @yahoo.com, @aol.com, @outlook.com, @msn.com and @gmail.com.

The message that pops up when you try to use one of these addresses is new as of yesterday, and it won’t prevent you from sending; we’re simply letting you know that we recommend not using that domain for the best delivery experience, due to these domains’ recent changes.

Let me know if you have any other questions!
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Mabel and Zora

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Hi.  I've only had a gmail and yahoo account, where do you suggest we get a new account from that will work?  Thank you.
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Hi! Do you have an ISP address you can use, like Comcast or Bellsouth?
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Page Ahead

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Do you know if using an RSVP address that is hosted by Google, but does not end in @gmail.com we would still be seen as a broken link? Our nonprofit's emails are hosted by Google but end in @pageahead.org. We have seen a significant drop in our open (and possibly delivery as well) rates since these changes went into effect. So we are trying to figure out what we need to change to bring it back up.
Thanks for your help!
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Hello! I haven’t heard of any problems with @pageahead.org, only with the domains listed above. You might try playing with your subject lines by split testing to figure out the type of subject line your contacts best respond to. I also suggest taking a look at your send time to see if there’s some testing you can do for the day/time you’re sending, too.

In addition, I advise asking your IT Team to whitelist Emma’s sending domain and IP range and set up an SPF record to make sure you’re set up for success when it comes to delivery. Here’s more information about that.

I hope this helps!
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Bud Werner Memorial Library

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Our IT department just informed us of this issue.  We use corporate Gmail and all of our reply-to addresses on our Emma newsletters use our alias of @steamboatlibrary.org or @literarysojourn.org.

But we have been told that if we send out a newsletter and one of our yahoo.com subscribers responds to the mailing by replying to one of the above addresses, then that email will be rejected by our corporate gmail account. Is this true?

The work-around on our Drupal website is to set a separate Reply-To address for our outgoing emails. The "from" name and address should be something like "Contact Request ", while the Reply-To is set to the form component corresponding to your client's customer's email address.

Thanks for the clarification.
Alysa
(Edited)
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Bud Werner Memorial Library

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Hey Emma,

I just sent out a newsletter and got an auto reply from a yahoo recipient so it appears that my question has been answered and that we are receiving replies from yahoo and AOL subscribers.

Thanks - Alysa
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Hi Alysa! I want to help clarify: Our above recommendation is against using a Yahoo email address as your from email address. It’s totally unrelated to the email addresses of your recipients, and you should receive any replies from them. You shouldn’t have any trouble using an @steamboatlibrary.org or @literarysojourn.org from address.
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Bud Werner Memorial Library

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Thanks Katie for the reply.  That was my experience this weekend after sending out my newsletter.  I received many replies from yahoo subscribers asking to change their email address.  Seems they are a bit frustrated too. :-)