Unsubscribing versus Junking

Targeted Email Newsletters Show Continued Strength (Jakob Nielsen’s Alertbox):

We’ve also found that users often employ their spam filters to avoid newsletters that they no longer want. Instead of unsubscribing, which users often view as too cumbersome, they simply tell their spam-blocker that the newsletter is spam. Voila: the newsletter no longer arrives in the inbox.

The fact that many users will declare a newsletter to be spam when they tire of it has terrifying implications: legitimate newsletters might get blacklisted and thus ISPs might block their delivery to other subscribers. This is a compelling reason to increase the usability of the unsubscribe process: better to lose a subscriber than to be listed as spam.

See also Techdirt on the same subject.

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