Emails Bouncing or Being Sent to Spam

Deliverability Report

Users can see the following for emails they've sent out through Breeze:

  • Email addresses that their message was successfully delivered to
  • Email addresses that opened their message (and an overall open rate percentage)
  • Email addresses that clicked a link in their message (and an overall click rate percentage)
  • Email addresses that failed to receive the email
This information can be helpful in making sure the email addresses you have within Breeze are accurate and getting a sense on how engaged your readers are as well as being able to improve your email content for greater engagement. To access this information:
  1. Navigate to "User Setting" > "History" > "Emails."
  2. Select a previous email to view its details.
  3. Click either "Delivered" or "Failed" on the left to view additional information.

Deliverability Issues-Reasons

If you're having trouble with an email going through, view your deliverability report to look into the status of a specific email. While status messages can vary based on email provider, you should find a status below similar to that listed in the report.

Delivered
Your message was successfully delivered to the recipient.

Previously Reported as Spam
This recipient previously reported a message from Breeze as spam. We honor that request by no longer attempting to send them emails. To remove this restriction and to email them again:

  1. Navigate to "User Settings" > "History" > "Email"
  2. Find the email that did not send and select "Failed" from the lefthand side. 
  3. Find the email marked as "Previously Reported as Spam"
  4. Select "unblock."

Invalid Email Address
The recipient's email account does not exist. Check the spelling of the address and try again. Breeze will not attempt to send to this address in the future.1

Bounced Address
This message can mean one of two things:

This most often means the recipient's email account does not exist. We recommend double checking that the address is correct. Breeze will not attempt to send to this address in the future.

This error can also mean that the recipient's email provider rejected the email as being potential spam. To resolve this, see "Improving Deliverability" (below).

If you have updated the email address on file there is no additional action required. If you have not edited the email address on file and have verified that it is indeed correct, and you would like to remove this restriction and email them again, please email us with the email address that is not receiving the messages.

Emails With No Text/Only Graphics
If an email only has images without any text included, it will automatically send as failed.  Be sure to include at least some text in an email in addition to a graphic before sending it out for improved deliverability. 

Receive an email regarding email suspension because of spam? Click here for details.
When a user sends an email out of Breeze, our backend can see how the receiver interacted with it (open, sent, etc.). It also tells if the recipient marked the email as spam.  When a person marks an email that has been sent from Breeze as Spam, that generates a quick scan of the church's account. In the last 30 days, it will determine what percentage of their messages were marked as spam. If it meets a specific percentage, Breeze will block the church's account from sending emails. What are the ranges?The industry standard for Spam is 0.15% — if it’s more than that the church will be blocked. Alternatively, The church will be marked as spam if the church has more than 50 static spam emails in the last 30 days. Breeze will begin monitoring the spam count at 0.05% to see if they can find the root of the issue before 0.15% is reached. What happens when emails are blocked? Primary users will receive an email indicating that their church account has been blocked.  Breeze will run an investigation as to the nature of the block and remove the block or take further action as necessary. 
Best practices for email deliverability and not being marked as spam:
  • Unsubscribe option in the email
  • Email only people you know
  • Have an opt-in policy to receive emails from the church/organization.
Pending
There are few reasons why an email would say pending:
  1. There's no email under the Profile.
  2. There's an attachment that's too large in it that's causing it to "break".
  3. It's a Contribution Statement that is legitimately stuck and we'll need to send that out for them.
  4. The email address under the profile is incorrect. (Space in the email address, wrong domain, etc.

Improving Deliverability

Users can take steps to improve email deliverability, depending on what provider they are using:

I'm sending from a publicly-available account (e.g. Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, Comcast, Charter, etc).

When Breeze sends email messages as if those messages were coming from a Gmail, Comcast, or another publicly-available email account, the messages are more likely to be flagged as spam. This is because the recipient's mail server can see that even though the message says it's coming from john.doe@gmail.com, the message didn't actually come from Gmail's servers (because it really came from ours). This is true for any third party emailing on behalf of an address like this.

If you find deliverability begins to suffer because of this, there are two options available:
  1. Move your email account to a private domain name (e.g. change from john.doe@gmail.com to john.doe@firstbaptistchurch.com). By having a private domain name, you can tell the domain name that Breeze is allowed to send on its behalf.
  2. Alternatively, you can tell our support team that you would like to enable "Alternate Sending" on your account.1 This will force messages to be sent from a Breeze-owned domain name. Replies will still go to your correct email address. This option can easily be turned on, and off by our support team. If you decide that you do no longer wish to use alternative sending. It’s already enabled for personal use Gmail but not necessarily G Suite. 

I'm sending from a private account (e.g. john.doe@firstbaptistchurch.com, jane.doe@firstlutheran.com, etc.)

If you are sending your messages from a private domain name (e.g. john.doe@firstbaptistchurch.com), you'll need to adjust the domain's settings to essentially tell it that Breeze is allowed to email on its behalf. To do this, contact your technical administrator and ask them to add the following SPF record to the domain name:
 
v=spf1 include:email.breezechms.com ~all
 
Note that if you already have an SPF record, you'll want to add this address to the existing record.  Do not create a separate record. Adding a record to an existing record might look something like this (the below example assumes the Google record already existed):
 
v=spf1 include:_spf.google.com include:email.breezechms.com ~all
 

That will inform recipients that our mail server is allowed to email on behalf of your domain name (e.g. firstbaptistchurch.com). Please note that if Advanced Authentication (DMARC/DKIM) is enabled in your email settings, those settings will override the SPF record.

"Alternate Sending" causes mail that you send from Breeze to actually come from a Breeze address. For instance, if your email account is john.doe@gmail.com, with alternate sending enabled, the address your message actually comes from might be john.doe_rt+gmail@breezechms.com. We set the reply-to address to be your actual address (john.doe@gmail.com) so when recipients reply, those replies go to your inbox as expected. If Advanced Authentication is enabled on your personal domain, please contact Breeze support so that we can add you to the alternate sending list. If you have any additional questions on Advanced Authentication, please contact Breeze support.
Click Here for More Detailed Information on SPF Records

An SPF record kind of acts like a way to advertise your domain's mail servers. In some ways, it acts like a DNS record that can notify the recipient's mail host which mail servers are authorized to send mail from your domain name, which makes it a bit more difficult for someone to "spoof" your email address and send mail impersonating with you.

So Breeze's SPF inclusion needs to look something like:

v=spf1 ip4:167.89.70.164 include:spf.protection.outlook.com -all

The record is composed of three parts:

  1. v=spf1 identifies the TXT record as an SPF record.
  2. ip4:167.89.70.164 specifies an approved list of outgoing servers.
    • This is the ip4 address for Breeze.
  3. -all specifies how hosts should regard servers that are not on the list. There are a few modifiers you can use here:
    • -all "Hard Fail" means reject all mail that isn't on the allowed list.
    • ~all "Soft fail" means accept mail not on the allowed list, but treat it with more scrutiny.
    • ?all "Neutral" means accept all mail; there isn't a policy for servers not on the list. This is the default setting.

So our code is designed to allow Breeze (and Office) to send email from your domain while all other outgoing mail servers are unauthorized.

With this said, every host server has their own set of rules for mail servers and some rules for some servers can make it more difficult to send and/or deliver mail. So with this in mind, unless you've experienced an issue where someone has tried to spoof your email for malicious purposes, it's a safety net but it also adds a level of complexity when someone (like Breeze) wants to send messages on your behalf.

This level of complexity may mean that Breeze would need to create a work around to work with your email host if we cannot get this code to work because your email server would essentially be saying to Breeze "STOP! You're not authorized!" and blocking all communications from us through your email address.

Filtering in Gmail
If you notice Gmail continues to put Breeze emails in spam, consider setting up a Gmail Filter. Use *@breezechms.com as the filter email and mark "Never Send it to Spam".
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Comments

19 comments
  • If we are using Google Suite to embed our domain name to emails, how would we change the settings to allow Breeze to email on their behalf?

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  • following. great question.

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  • Hey @mlanger and @faithuccsc!

    Happy to help! Would you mind to clarify your question a bit more so that I can best direct next steps?

    Also, Google Support has directions on how to change the domain name if that is most helpful! :)

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  • We already use GSuite to generate a Gmail to match our Domain. 

     

    My question is in response to:

    I'm sending from a private account (e.g. john.doe@firstbaptistchurch.com, jane.doe@firstlutheran.com, etc.)

    If you are sending your messages from a private domain name (e.g. john.doe@firstbaptistchurch.com), you'll need to adjust the domain's settings to essentially tell it that Breeze is allowed to email on its behalf. To do this, contact your technical administrator and ask them to add the following SPF record to the domain name:
     
    v=spf1 include:email.breezechms.com ~all
     
    Note that if you already have an SPF record, you'll want to add this address to the existing record.  Do not create a separate record. Adding a record to an existing record might look something like this (the below example assumes the Google record already existed):
     
    v=spf1 include:_spf.google.com include:email.breezechms.com ~all
     
    That will inform recipients that our mail server is allowed to email on behalf of your domain name (e.g. firstbaptistchurch.com).  ---- In other words, we are NOT using the domain's e-mail service but Gmail's. We do however want to make sure that our mass e-mail are getting out and not shoved into a SPAM folder. 
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  • Hey @Mlanger!

    Thanks for the clarification! This should be exactly what you need: https://support.google.com/a/answer/33786?hl=en 

    Happy Breezing! 

     

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  • Question: is it possible to UNblock a previously bounced address?

    I ask because this page says (note the last line)

    • Bounced Address
    • This message can mean one of two things:
    • This most often means the recipient's email account does not exist. We recommend double checking that the address is correct. Breeze will not attempt to send to this address in the future.

    Our office email address was temporarily down. An email sent from Breeze bounced back.

    Our email is back up now. But Breeze still reports it as bouncing back.

    This is not our email domain problem, because I sent to someone else on the same domain (oaklandcc.net) and it went through fine.

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  • @kristripp

    Thanks for reaching out to the Forum! The answer to your question is YES. We can manually remove emails that have been added to our Suppression list if you supply us with the Email. I would suggest switching over to our support channels if you would like to share to emails with us! 

    Blessings!

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  • We are enabling DMARC on our private domain and don't want Breeze to be marked as spam when Breeze email is sent out from one of our domain addresses.

    The instructions for improving deliverability for a private domain handle SPF checks. How do we handle DKIM checks with BreezeCHMS?

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  • Hey @nogden,

    Happy to help! I'll be reaching out to you via email to discuss this more with you and get this figured out!

    Speak soon!

     

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  • My church is getting started with Breeze and I'm worried about problems due to recipients marking our newsletter as spam. Some do that instead of unsubscribing. Don't other churches get that too? Do you really enforce a limit of .15% ?

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  • Hey @marshall!

    Thanks for reaching out. Great point! The emails will be received from your church email or church, they won't specifically say only from Breeze.  My apologies but I am not sure I fully understand the limit question; would you be so kind to provide some additional details so that I can best serve you?

    Blessings! 

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  • My church plans to use the Breeze email system to send a newsletter to many people every week. Some recipients may not want to read the newsletter and they may mark it as spam.  They may ignore the way to unsubscribe.  This article above says:

    Receive an email regarding email suspension because of spam? Click here for details. . . .
    The industry standard for Spam is 0.15% — if it’s more than that the church will be blocked.

    So if we send to 400 people and just 1 marks it as spam, we will be blocked. So that's why i ask, do you really enforce the .15% limit?

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  • Hey @rmarshall, 

    Great question! We do have these policies in place, but we are aware and sensitive to the needs of the churches and ministries we serve! 

    I will be reaching out to you via email to talk a little more about this! 

    Blessings!

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  • Hello! I've searched but can't find anything about this particular error I'm having. When I email our newsletter to one particular person, the error description says, "552 5.1.1 recipient rejected - extended quota violation."

    What does this mean, and how do I fix it? I've found a short-term workaround by sending the newsletter to the person's spouse instead, but I'd like to straighten this out so they can both receive the newsletter.

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  • Hey @Tripp G.

    I was able to find the exact situation in your account and email associated with this error message. I was able to then go in and set that email to be able to receive emails now. If you ever see this error again for any email address, feel free to reach out to our Support Team, and we can assist you with this process.

    Blessings,

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  • The emails that are  listed as "failed" all belong to members of the church.  Most are elderly.

    Please unblock

    a.pribble@yahoo.com - his shows: Reported as Spam (unblock)  I spoke with him today and he isn't getting them.

    maphillips01@comcast.net

    nancyabrooks@yahoo.com

    woodbrock2@aol.com

    gar18@comcast.net

    All list that they are being bounced, except a.pribble@yahoo.com

    I can email them directly one-on-one, but the church-wide email doesn't get to them.  Please help.  They are elderly, and it would be hard for them to make changes easily.

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  • Hey @office!

    I apologize that you are having issues with emails sending! I unblocked them on our end. I hope this helps! Please reach out to us if this does not solve the problem for you!

    Blessings!

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  • How can we keep our church emails from being filtered into the "Promotions" tab within Gmail? (We already had alternate sending enabled). People can receive on emails, it just doesn't go to "Primary" but rather into "Promotions" which has caused a lot of overlooked emails.

    I appreciate the help!

    Brad

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  • @portelabradley

    Great question, Brad! We certainly appreciate you taking a moment to reach out to us concerning email deliverability. Essentially, email inboxes have spam filters that are set to help the customer not receive unwanted emails. If there is an email that happens to go to the promotions folder, it simply needs to be moved to the inbox. Gmail will remember this and not filter those emails in the future. 

    I hope this helps! 

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