What is the difference between a Spam complaint and a Spam Notification bounce?

  • A Spam Notification means that your message was rejected by the receiving mail server. This could be due to rigid corporate policies in place on the receiving mail server or some bad choice of words in your email that are getting flagged by spam filters.
  • A Spam Complaint is recorded when a user clicks This is Spam or Mark as Spam from email clients like Yahoo, Hotmail, AOL, etc... from their inbox.

Resolving Spam Notifications

Spam Notifications need to be resolved on the receiving mail server side, specifically with the spam filter settings for the domain you are sending to. To resolve the blocks, contact the recipient through another channel and ask them to ask their IT team or mail administration team to whitelist either your sending domain or Postmark's sending IP addresses in their spam filter settings. You can also share the full bounce error with them.

To get the full bounce error:

  1. View the message that received the Spam Notification.
  2. Select More Details to view the bounce error.

  3. Copy and share the bounce error details with the recipient in a channel outside of Postmark.
The mail or IT admins at the recipients organization can adjust their organization policies to let your messages through. You can also share our Outbound SMTP Servers (where we send email from) with them for whitelisting.

Note: Addresses that bounced due to a Spam Notification do not need to be reactivated in Postmark before you can send to them. You can send to them again immediately once they confirm they will allow your mail to get through their spam filter.

Resolving Spam Complaints

While you should not have any spam complaints, they do happen. Once a spam complaint is recorded, Postmark will deactivate this address and will not let you reactivate it. In the email industry, spam complaints are a clear metric to determine abuse and poor sending practices. It’s important that we take these reports seriously to ensure the best delivery for all customers.

If the recipient reaches out to you or your sender and wants to receive emails again, contact us at support@postmarkapp.com and let us know to reactivate the recipient's address.

Last updated April 25th, 2019

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