Returns: soft and hard bounces

Returns, or bounces, are email messages that were not delivered to the recipient because the mail server or client rejected them. Depending on the reason, there are two types of bounces: hard and soft.

Causes of hard bounces

  • Non-existent recipient address or a non-existent domain on the server where the mailbox is hosted.

  • Errors in the mailbox name before the "@" symbol in the email address.

  • The recipient's address is inactive or blocked because it hasn't been used for a long time.

These reasons for non-delivery are permanent. When a mail server returns a message as a hard bounce, the platform updates the subscription status for that profile as "Hardbounced." The profile remains in the database, but communication with it within the platform ceases. Subsequently, campaigns won't send messages to profiles with this status.

In contrast to hard bounces, soft bounces are caused by temporary issues with the recipient's address.

Causes of soft bounces

  • Recipient's mailbox is full and cannot accept new messages.

  • Technical issues on the recipient's mail server.

  • Large email size, possibly due to heavy attachments.

  • Spam filters blocked the message because many recipients marked it as spam.

Since the inability to deliver in these cases is temporary, the campaign will attempt to resend the email. Each attempt is recorded in the consolidated report. The number of retries is typically set in the Administrator Panel, with a default of six attempts spaced five minutes apart.

Even if the message is not delivered to the recipient, it doesn't impact their subscription status. You can still send emails to this subscriber in the context of the next campaign.

Where to view bounce metrics

Bounces report

Hard bounces can negatively impact the reputation of sender domains and IP addresses, so it's essential to regularly monitor these metrics. A bounce report will assist you in this. Specify the period for which you want to assess the number of soft and hard bounces.

The example of report which is grouped by domain:

Bounce report grouped by domains

The example of report which is grouped by IP:

Bounce report grouped by domains

Hard bounce and soft bounce through segmentation

To identify profiles that have received a hardbounced status after a campaign's completion, create a segment with the following rules:

  1. Email was not delivered at all during the campaign, even though it was sent. Specify the resource and campaign.

  2. Selection is by profile status. Selection condition is hardbounced.

How to identify profiles with hardbounced status

If you need information about subscribers who encountered temporary delivery issues at the time of the campaign launch, follow these steps. First create a segment of profiles with a subscription status of "Hardbounced" as described earlier. Save this segment as dynamic and give it a name, such as "Subscribers with Hardbounce status." Then build a new segment with two rules:

  1. Email was not delivered at all during the campaign, even though it was sent. Specify the resource and campaign.

  2. Profiles are not in the segment "Subscribers with Hardbounce status."

How to identify profiles with soft bounces

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