61 Email Marketing Terms Every Marketer Should Know – Ultimate Glossary

The email marketing industry is constantly evolving in a bid to meet up with the needs of businesses and organizations. As new practices and processes emerge, new marketing terms are coined to explain these new practices. And with the equivalent of millions of business hours being poured into the creation of email marketing campaigns, it can be confusing to know what terms are industry standard. 

This post explores the top email marketing terminologies to boost your email marketing fluency.

61 Email Marketing Terms 

1. Attachment Open Rate

This refers to the proportion of people who have opened the attachment sent through an email.

2. Autoresponder

An autoresponder is a system that provides automatic responses to messages to emails sent to a particular address. A popular example of a tool that helps you create autoresponders is Hubspot

3. A/B Split Testing

This term defines a popular method used to test the efficacy of the variants of the same email sent to people. Let’s say you are sending the campaign for your new products through email to prospective customers, and you have created about three different emails on the same subject. A/B split testing allows you to test and compare the effect of any of these three email variants on people. 

4. Acceptance Rate

Acceptance rate refers to the proportion of emails accepted by the email server. It is important to mention that getting accepted by the email server does not guarantee that the email will land in the recipient’s inbox. 

5. Attachment

This refers to a file added to an email. 

6. Auto Follow Up

An auto follow up is an automatic email sent to a prospect or customer as a follow-up on a previous email to remind them about a particular subject matter. Based on the nature of this message, the email should be automated, and different tools help you do this seamlessly. 

7. Bounce Rate

This refers to the number of emails that are not delivered to the intended recipient’s inbox. 

8. Block

Block refers to the inability of your email to get to your intended recipients through spam filters or other factors. You may experience a block if you have a spammy-looking email or exceed Gmail’s daily sending limit. 

9. Bulk Mail

Also known as mass mail, it is the process of sending an email to a lot of people at the same time. 

10. Call to Action

This is a prompt request or order given at the end of the email, urging the recipient to take action. This action could be anything from downloading an app to signing up for a service. 

11. Cold Email

When you send an email to a person you do not know or have not had previous communication with, it is called a cold email. You can either send or receive a cold email. Gmass is an example of a tool that allows you to send mass emails at the same time. 

12. Canadian Anti-spam Law

Abbreviated as CASL, it is legislation that requires organizations to receive consent from recipients before sending them emails. The law mainly focuses on Canadian organizations and global organizations operating in Canada and emails sent to or from within Canada. 


This is an abbreviation for another legislation known as the Controlling Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003. This law prohibits businesses in the US from sending misleading emails to recipients. 

14. Custom Domain

Custom domain is also known as a dedicated IP address, and it refers to when your website has its own IP address or domain name. With this domain name or dedicated IP address, you can access the website from anywhere on the web. 

15. Conversion Rate

The conversion rate is the proportion of people who carried out the request prompted by the CTA in the email sent. This means that if the email contained a CTA for downloading an app, the percentage of people that downloaded the app through the email refers to the conversion rate. 

16. DomainKeys Identified Mail

Shortened as DKIM, this term defines the way through which an organization assumes responsibility for an email sent. DKIM is important because it determines the way subsequent emails will be handled. 

17. Drip Marketing

Sometimes, businesses schedule a set of pre-written emails to be delivered to a recipient one after the other, based on the recipient’s behavior. This system is known as drip marketing. 

18. Email Client

This term refers to computer software that allows you to access, send and receive emails on your desktop without using your browser. Cake email is an example of an email marketing tool that also works as an email client.

19. Engagement

Engagement refers to the total number of possible interactions a recipient can have with your email. This includes clicks, shares, and opens. 

20. Scraping

This term is also known as email harvesting. It refers to when a user or business harvests a list of email addresses from other businesses in the industry using some special tools. The aim is usually to send a mass mail to these lists of email addresses. It is important to mention that it is illegal to harvest email addresses without the prior consent of the recipients in some countries. 

21. Phishing

Phishing is a fraudulent activity that involves scammers using a popular company’s name to send mass emails in a bid to illegitimately obtain certain information from recipients. The information sought could be credit card details, passwords, and other sensitive information. To avoid this problem, use a secured password manager such as Zoho Vault

Read an extensive guide on online security to learn more about effective ways to avoid password breaches and creating hack-proof passwords. 

22. Grey Mail

This type of mail does not completely fit into the legitimate or spam mail category. This type of mail arises when a recipient who opted to receive your emails does not open them anymore because they have probably lost interest in the subject matter. 

23. Email Queue

It refers to a queue or line of emails that are to be sent one after another. You have an email queue when you automate your email campaign. 

24. Image Blocking

This refers to a situation where a setting on the email client or recipient’s personal preference prevents images included in the email from loading. This setting helps your recipient save time and data but prevents you from communicating effectively. 

25. Domain Blacklist

Domain blacklist refers to when emails from a particular domain are treated as spam. It happens when the domain sends too many unsolicited emails. With the aid of some anti-spam groups, a domain can get blacklisted. However, there are mail testers that help you determine whether or not your domain has been blacklisted. 

26. Double Opt-in

This is a way of ensuring that your email list is clean and all the addresses on the list belong to people who are really interested in receiving your emails. You can do this by making recipients confirm their email addresses after signing up for your newsletter. 

27. Email Campaign

An email campaign is a series of emails sent to a person with a view to achieving a particular goal. It usually includes one email and a batch of follow-up emails. 

28. Email Deliverability

This term defines the ability to get your email in your recipient’s inbox. 

29. Email Filters 

These filters are smart features on the email client that helps to categorize different emails under Important, Promotion, Social, and other types of categories. 

30. Email Marketing

It refers to a way of using emails to create a relationship between clients and their leads. 

31. Email Service Provider

This refers to any service that allows you to use, send or receive emails. The most popular example is Gmail

32. Email Template

This is preset email content made to serve a purpose. It saves you the time spent on curating a new email anytime a recurrent action or situation occurs. 

33. Email Verification

This refers to the process of reviewing your email list to remove invalid, insensitive, and fake emails from your list. It is advisable to do this every three months. 

34. General Data Protection Regulation

GDPR is a data protection law in Europe that ensures that Europeans using the internet are not spammed by businesses with unnecessary information and junk. 

35. Hard Bounce

This refers to when an email refuses to drop in the recipient’s inbox due to factors such as an invalid email address, blocked delivery, or an invalid domain name.

36. HTML Tags

These are tags embedded in the HTML code used in sending an email. It helps you personalize the emails you send. For instance, if you use the <firstname> tag in your HTML code, it automatically puts the recipient’s first name in the email. While Gmail does not have the required tools to use these tags, there are other tools, such as ZippySig that help you use it. 

37. IP Warmup

This refers to warming your IP address up to send more emails. If you start sending a lot of emails at once, your emails may end up in the spam folder. However, training your IP address with a gradually increasing number of emails helps you avoid this. For instance, sending ten emails today and gradually increasing the emails to 20 tomorrow helps you warm up the IP address and prevents the spam filter from getting these emails. 

38. Label

This refers to the category that you want your email to go to. Be it promotion, important or social, label your emails as it helps with visibility. 

39. Landing Page

The landing page refers to the specific page that a recipient would land on once they click on the link embedded in the email. Landigi is an example of software that helps you create responsive landing pages with zero code.

40. Click Through Rate

This refers to the proportion of people clicking on the link attached to the emails sent.

41. Newsletter

This refers to a publication or message that is regularly sent to people who have opted to receive it through emails. Beehiiv is a popular tool that allows you to create newsletters without any coding experience. 

42. Open Rate

This refers to the proportion of people who have opened your email. 

43. Opt-out

Also known as the unsubscribe option, this is an option that allows recipients of your mail to opt-out or unsubscribe from receiving your emails. 

44. Personalized Email

A personalized email contains elements that can only be attached to one person. It could be the recipient’s first name or anything that makes the email particular to them. This helps the recipient feel a sense of belonging and avoid seeing the email as a generic one. 

45. Reply Rate

The reply rate refers to the percentage of people who respond to your emails. 

46. Sender Score

This refers to a score used to measure the reputation of a sender. The higher the sender score, the higher the likelihood of the email landing in the recipient’s inbox.

47. Single Opt-in

This is the opposite of double opt-in, and it refers to the process where prospects are only required to provide their email addresses when signing up. You do not ask prospects to confirm their email addresses by sending a test email in a single opt-in. 

48. Soft Bounce

This is also the opposite of hard bounce, which refers to when the email sent cannot be delivered if the recipient’s server is down or offline, if the recipient’s mailbox is full, or if the email is too large for the recipient’s mailbox. 

49. Spam Cop

This anti-spam service allows recipients to report spam or unsolicited emails to the “SpamCop Blocking List.” Once the sender’s IP address or domain name gets to this list, it becomes very hard to regain its reputation. 

50. Spam Filters

This smart feature in emails automatically categorizes spam or unsolicited emails to the spam folder. 

51. Sender Policy Framework

Abbreviated as SPF, it is an email authentication technique that helps you prevent spammers from sending unsolicited emails from your domain. Once your IP address is registered and authenticated on this framework, filters will stop categorizing your emails as spam or fraudulent.

52. List Churn

This refers to the number of people that unsubscribe from your list when you send them an email. It is also regarded as an unsubscribe rate. 

53. Whitelist

This refers to a list of email addresses that a recipient considers genuine and interested in. the higher the number of people who whitelist your email address, the higher your domain reputation. 

54. List Hygiene

The term, list hygiene, refers to how often or regularly you clean, maintain and verify an accurate mail list. 

55. Preview Pane

This refers to a small window in the inbox that allows you to take an overview of your email. 

56. Rendering

This is the process of seeing what the email will look like when it gets into your recipient’s inbox.

57. Welcome Email

This refers to the first email you send to people when they sign up for your newsletter. 

58. Responsive Design 

This refers to an email’s features that allow it to respond to the recipient’s action. These features are embedded into the email using HTML codes. 

59. Email Lists

This is a list that contains information about people, such as their names, email addresses, locations, jobs, and other information that helps you to personalize and segment emails sent to them. 

60. Honey Pot

Honey pot is an email planted by organizations to act as a spam trap to tackle spam mails. With the honey pot email, once a spammer harvests and sends a spam to the email address, the anti spam service flags the spammer.

61. House List

This is a list of email addresses of people that have explicitly signed up or opted into being a subscriber.


Email marketing consists of different practices and processes that ensure that the end goal of meeting business’s marketing goals is met. The terminologies defined in this guide explain some of these processes and practices. 



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