System Best Practices for Email and Mobile

First, let’s talk deliverability

Your sender reputation is especially important during the busy holiday season. Since ISPs dynamically score your messaging, having a good sender reputation determines if mail is delivered to a user’s primary inbox. Your sender reputation is key to your revenue. 

Metrics to Track

To ensure optimal delivery of your messaging, keep track of the following email metrics:

  • Open rates by top domain
    Open rates should be consistent across the top ISPs. If one is significantly lower than the rest, you may have an inboxing issue with that top domain. 
  • Bounce rates
    If Hard Bounces are above 0.5%, check the audience you sent to. If Soft Bounces are high, check to see if there’s a mail block. 
  • Open Rate changes
    Lower than usual Open Rates can indicate poor engagement and play an important role in your reputation.
  • Opt-out rates
    Don’t sacrifice year-round loyal audiences for the holiday season. If opt-out rates rise, adjust your strategy. 
  • Complaint rates
    High complaint rates indicate that users don’t like what you’re sending. This could be related to the content or the frequency. Monitor complaints with each send. 

Tip: You can view all these email metrics in the Campaign Summary report.


Here are a few steps to take to ensure your deliverability remains consistent throughout the holiday season. For a more in-depth review, see Deliverability Best Practices in the Sailthru Knowledge Base.

  • Do not introduce any new lists not previously mailed from Sailthru. 
  • Do not reactivate old or unused lists.
  • Do not remove suppression lists.
  • Use caution with new acquisition sources. 
  • Be careful editing your signup and opt-out pages. Make any changes well in advance of the holiday sending season.
  • Carefully consider any changes to your sending cadence.
  • Keep your sending domain the same. 

Channel Best Practices

Each sending channel in Sailthru requires different best practices to optimize your sender reputation. 

Email Messaging – Timing

Your send time is almost as important as your content to ensure good engagement. 

  • Send off the hour at 11:10 or 1:36, for example. You’ll avoid the rush and get to the top of the inbox. 
  • Use Personalized Send Time to reach users at optimal hours unless your offer is time-limited. 
  • Send in users’ local time zones for maximum engagement. 

Lifecycle Optimizer

Start testing new Lifecycle Optimizer flows now (in advance of holiday sends) to confirm expected behavior. Ensure your Transactional templates are set as “transactional”. 


Ensure your mobile apps are up-to-date and ready for the holiday season. 

  • Update to the latest SDK to ensure compatibility with the latest devices. 
  • Push early to the App Store to avoid delays close to holidays. 
  • Promote in-app purchases as customers often receive credits as gifts. 
  • Use emojis in your push notifications–they’re shown to improve engagement rates.