About DMARC: How Free Email Providers Affect Delivery

Lately, free email providers have updated their DMARC policies in ways that can affect some MailChimp users. A few email providers like AOL and Yahoo already made these changes, and others like Gmail are set to make the changes soon.

DMARC validation, which is a system for authenticating email messages, helps protect email inboxes from spoofing and email scams. But it can also have some side effects for legitimate senders like you.

In this article, you'll learn how DMARC might affect you, and how to avoid delivery problems when you send campaigns from free email providers.

How does DMARC affect MailChimp users?

DMARC policies affect MailChimp users who choose free webmail addresses like gmail.com, aol.com, and yahoo.com as their From email address.  

For AOL, Yahoo, mac.com domains, and eventually Gmail, the DMARC record will include p=reject. This means that these email domains won’t deliver messages that don’t originate from their service. These policies stop spammers, but unfortunately, they can also get in the way of valid email senders like you.

Here’s how it works. Let’s say your MailChimp campaign has a yahoo.com From email address. When you send the campaign, Yahoo will recognize that the campaign didn’t come directly from its own service, so it rejects the delivery and prevents it from arriving in your subscribers’ inboxes.  

Because of this DMARC policy, you’ll see a few notifications in the Campaign Builder if you try to use an AOL, Yahoo, or Gmail From email address.

How can I avoid problems?

The best thing you can do is to register your own domain and use it for the From email address of all your campaigns. This helps guarantee delivery, and it makes your campaigns look professional.

We understand that this isn’t doable for everybody, so our other solutions depend on the email provider you use.

Gmail Users

To use a gmail.com From email address, you’ll need to acknowledge the warning on the Setup and Confirm steps of the Campaign Builder, and then send as usual.

However, it's usually a good idea to register an address at your own domain if it’s feasible for your organization. Read the article Register a Domain for more details.

AOL, Yahoo, and Mac.com Domain Users

To send from a Yahoo, AOL, or mac.com address, you’ll need to acknowledge the warnings on the Setup and Confirm steps of the Campaign Builder.

After you acknowledge the risk and send your campaign, we’ll add an extra domain extension to your Yahoo, AOL, or mac.com address to help ensure delivery. The extensions will look something like this when your campaigns are delivered to your subscribers.

  • send.mailchimpapp.com  

  • mail.mailchimpapp.com

This solution is currently only available for Yahoo and AOL addresses. For a more professional looking From email address, we recommend that you use your own email domain. Read the article Register a Domain for more details.

Other Free Email Domains

Some free domains like outlook.com don't currently use DMARC to reject or quarantine mail, but this is expected to eventually change as p=reject becomes an industry standard.

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