What is the Return-Path?
The Return-Path is the address where bounces and other email feedback are sent. It is specified by the
Return-Path header in an email. The default Return-Path for emails sent through Postmark is:
It is also described as:
- bounce address
- reverse path
- envelope from
- MAIL FROM
Why set a custom Return-Path?
A custom Return-Path helps tie your email reputation with your domain. If you have a DMARC policy for your domain, a custom Return-Path that aligns with your domain achieves SPF alignment.
If you send emails from
example.com, then you can still pass SPF and DKIM authentication but since the Return-Path and From address are not using the same domain, SPF will not pass for DMARC alignment. When you set up a Return-Path domain of
pm-bounces.example.com (the default hostname value for a custom return-path is "pm-bounces") and send emails from
example.com then the domains will be aligned. When you send emails with a custom Return-Path, the header would look like:
How to set a custom Return-Path
For your Return-Path domain, you need to create a CNAME record in DNS that points to
pm.mtasv.net. This is so that Postmark is still able to collect bounces and other feedback sent to that address.
How to set a custom Return-Path in Postmark?
Click on the image below to view our video collection on how to set up a custom Return-Path in various DNS providers, or follow the detailed instructions below.
- Add a CNAME record to your DNS that points to pm.mtasv.net
- While logged into Postmark, choose Signatures
- Select the DNS Settings link on the domain you want to add the custom Return-Path domain on
- Navigate to the Return-Path section and enter in your alias you used in your CNAME record you added to your DNS