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Will using Branded Sending Domain be mandatory?

  • 10 February 2024
  • 4 replies
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I understand Klaviyo really wants its customers to comply with new Google and Yahoo whims. My question is will this be mandatory? Will Klaviyo disable its own customers who are not especially excited on dedicating time and resources to byzantine deliverability stuff?

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Best answer by kaila.lawrence 20 February 2024, 21:27

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Userlevel 7
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Hi @blissy, for the most part Klaviyo is not really opinionated on what you do or how you send your emails.  They provide plenty of suggestions and recommendations, but the framework in general is fairly open ended to do whatever you please.  There are definitely guidelines and acceptable use policy in areas you’d expect, but if you want to send 25 cart abandonment emails, you can go do so at your own peril or risk.   

However, when it comes to deliverability and compliance, both for Email and SMS, I think Klaviyo sets a lot of guard rails to protect you from yourself and clamp down on the occasional bad actors that choose to use Klaviyo as a tool for spam (or other nefarious deeds). 

For example, you see evidence of this with “transactional emails” (that requires approvals for example), compliance with SMS “quiet hours” and requirements of disclosure languages, and of course strict management of suppressed/unsubscribes and requirement of unsubscribe links.  They also give plenty of tools for consent management so you can stay above board.

As for the Branded Sending Domains, I’m getting some warnings like this in some Test Accounts I have within the Flow and alerts all over the place in your face! 

See this:

So I’m afraid this is one of those “deliverability” and compliance measures I think Klaviyo will clamp down on to which point they will fully “Skip” the email in a Flow if you’re not compliant.

We’ll wait and see, I haven’t seen or heard a lot of enforcement of Google/Yahoo Bulk Sending Guidelines impacts on the grapevine yet - certainly no anecdotal evidence that someone’s email has been completely blocked by Gmail/Yahoo.  But, it may be because Klaviyo did a good job scaring us all into compliance.

What are your thoughts?

 

Badge +4

Hi @blissy, for the most part Klaviyo is not really opinionated on what you do or how you send your emails.  They provide plenty of suggestions and recommendations, but the framework in general is fairly open ended to do whatever you please.  There are definitely guidelines and acceptable use policy in areas you’d expect, but if you want to send 25 cart abandonment emails, you can go do so at your own peril or risk.   

However, when it comes to deliverability and compliance, both for Email and SMS, I think Klaviyo sets a lot of guard rails to protect you from yourself and clamp down on the occasional bad actors that choose to use Klaviyo as a tool for spam (or other nefarious deeds). 

For example, you see evidence of this with “transactional emails” (that requires approvals for example), compliance with SMS “quiet hours” and requirements of disclosure languages, and of course strict management of suppressed/unsubscribes and requirement of unsubscribe links.  They also give plenty of tools for consent management so you can stay above board.

As for the Branded Sending Domains, I’m getting some warnings like this in some Test Accounts I have within the Flow and alerts all over the place in your face! 

See this:

So I’m afraid this is one of those “deliverability” and compliance measures I think Klaviyo will clamp down on to which point they will fully “Skip” the email in a Flow if you’re not compliant.

We’ll wait and see, I haven’t seen or heard a lot of enforcement of Google/Yahoo Bulk Sending Guidelines impacts on the grapevine yet - certainly no anecdotal evidence that someone’s email has been completely blocked by Gmail/Yahoo.  But, it may be because Klaviyo did a good job scaring us all into compliance.

What are your thoughts?

 

Thanks, waiting for Klaviyo to reply.

Userlevel 5
Badge +25

Alrighty, @blissy -- let’s get into the nitty gritty here!

 

First things first, I want to address some context here and set the stage a little bit. It’s super important to call out these deliverability requirements are not being mandated by Klaviyo. They’re coming from Google and Yahoo and therefore all bulk senders, regardless of which ESP they’re using, will need to comply with these requirements in order to avoid a negative impact on their deliverability. The reason why this is happening in the first place pretty much boils down to bad apples ruining it for everyone. Email phishing scams and spam is multibillion (with a B!!) dollar industry. Inbox providers like Google and Yahoo spend an enormous amount of resources preventing as much as they can, but it’s a bit of a whack-a-mole situation.

 

The way many phishers are able to succeed is through unauthorized use of a branded domain when they’re really sending from a fake one. What this means in practice for senders like you is to set up a branded sending domain through your own DNS provider to lock the authentication to your Klaviyo account and only your Klaviyo account. Then, it will be way harder (and with certain DMARC records, impossible) for any phishers out there trying to masquerade as your brand. This measure keeps both your brand and your customers safe from bad actors with dubious intentions. 

 

Now, with all of that said, Google and Yahoo have shared similar timelines for rejecting a percentage of mail from non-compliant senders that will increase over time. This means if you qualify as a bulk sender (sending ≥5,000 emails per day) and have not met the new requirements, Google and Yahoo will eventually reject 100% of your non-compliant mail.

 

So, to answer your overall question, “Is it mandatory?” The short is answer is: yes. If you want to send email to anyone with a Yahoo or Google-managed address (which is over 80% of all email addresses), you will need to comply with these new regulations. 

 

For the second part of your question, the bottom line here is we at Klaviyo want you to be successful in your marketing efforts. If a huge majority of your email is bouncing or ending up in spam, of course, that’s terrible for your business and your domain reputation. A bad domain reputation is super difficult to repair. I love the way @retention said it -- in essence, Klaviyo is trying to protect you from yourself before the damage is done. When Google and Yahoo begin rejecting non-compliant mail, Klaviyo will prevent non-compliant customers from sending mail until they achieve compliance. However, Klaviyo will not "disable" your account.

 

I can very much appreciate that these extra efforts seem “byzantine” (amazing SAT word, by the way), but in the long run this is beneficial for your business and your customers. We have TONS of resources to walk you through it. You especially might be interested in our Office Hours where our Training team will walk you through the steps and answer your questions live. I’ve also included additional guides and checklists we’ve put together on the topic. 

 

I hope that answers your question and explains a bit more why this is happening! Let me know if there’s any other context I can provide :) 

Userlevel 5
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Hey there, @blissy! I want you to know ahead of this long weekend I’ve seen your question and I’ve been asking internally to get you the best answer I can. Thanks for your patience. I’ll be back soon! :) 

 

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