In the last segment we talked about creating your mailing and subscriber lists. Now we will focus on a new topic, the double opt-in list.
Double Opt-In Lists Defined
A double opt-in list is nothing more than an email newsletter or ezine that allows people to sign up using your web page or by sending an email to the software that manages your opt in list.
Why is that different from an ordinary opt-in list? The difference is anyone who subscribes through a double opt in list must confirm their request to subscribe to your list twice.
The first time a subscriber usually opts in is when they give you their name and email address from a web based form. Once the initial request to join is received, software or your opt-in list management system like Aweber.com sends a confirmation email to the address the person entered as their email address. Users must then confirm their subscription by clicking the link provided in the email to affirm they agree to join your newsletter or ezine.
This is why the process is called double opt-in. People literally opt into your list twice. Once as an initial agreement to sign up then again to confirm their desire to be included on your list.
Why have people opt-in twice? Many marketers feel this process is mandatory to a business owner’s success. The double opt-in list confirms that someone entering his or her email address is genuinely interested in receiving your newsletter or other publication. The extra confirmation also verifies you have the correct email address.
By confirming a consumer is really interested in signing up for your list, you can rest assured the chances are very high you are getting high-quality prospects. These are people that are very likely to buy from you in the future because they have a solid interest in what you have to offer.
When you don’t offer a double opt-in option, a person can go on your website, enter another person’s email address and leave. Then the person receiving your confirmation email and following ezines will think they are being spammed, and may report you for spamming.
You don’t want to upset someone accidentally, so your best bet is to protect your interests and those of your clients by providing the double opt-in list choice.
It’s also important you confirm people signing up genuinely have an interest in your ezine or newsletter. If they don’t you will not sell anything to them. A single opt-in list leaves more opportunity for subscribers that won’t respond to your ezines because they will think they are Spam.
Advantages and Disadvantages Of The Double Opt-In
The point of an opt-in email list is attracting people to your list that are good, solid prospects. Good prospects are those likely to buy products from you in the future. A double-opt-in list will almost guarantee you get a high quality group of subscribers on your list. This will include people that want to receive the information you have to give.
You may have a smaller list of only 5,000 people if you do a double opt-in list, but chances are very high the people on this list are very eager for the information you have to offer. They are more likely to respond to advertisements posted on your ezine, which may result in more residual income for you.
Having 5,000 high quality prospects is much better than having one million general prospects that may or may not have an interest in your product. You want to spend 80% of your time focusing on prospects that are genuinely interested in what you have to offer. You can spend the remaining 20% on leads that may result in some sales.
The biggest advantage of a double opt-in list is it reduces the number of complaints of Spam your host receives. You don’t want to be charged with Spam accusations too often, or major ISP’s may ban your domain name. So make sure you always set up a double opt-in list when you can. You can do this easily using most of the common software programs available for mailing ezines and newsletters.
Not sure what these are? Check out Aweber.com. This is a great site that will help you set up an automatic opt-in list. All you have to do is click a button to turn a single opt-in list to a double opt-in list. You don’t have to know anything technical about how to set up an email ezine.
Another handy site to check out is GetResponse.com. They too offer a double opt-in facility you can use to reduce the likelihood your messages will be considered Spam.
The double opt-in list is a good alternative to the traditional opt-in list for many reasons. The most obvious reason is if a customer chooses to confirm their subscription to your email list, you can rest easy knowing they will not consider your emails Spam. It also prevents the likelihood that someone else may enter your site and enter someone else’s information as their own. If someone receives a subscription they did not want, they are more likely to report your actions as Spam, and you want to avoid that at all costs.