Subscribers complete the double opt-in process by filling out your signup form first and then confirming subscription to your list. When you use MailChimp to manage list subscriptions, we provide a series of forms and response emails that make up the double opt-in process. In this article, we outline each part of our double opt-in process as well as the advantages of double opt-in over other methods.
The MailChimp double opt-in process
- Signup Form: This is the first step in the double opt-in process. A potential subscriber fills out your signup form and clicks the subscribe button. If there are any mistakes on the form, they'll see your Signup Form with Alerts page where they can correct the errors and resubmit the form.
- Signup "Thank You" Page: Once a subscriber fills out your signup form, they'll see a brand new tab open in their browser instructing them to check their inbox for a confirmation email. If you'd like, you can redirect to a thank you page you host instead of using the default page we provide.
- Opt-In Confirmation Email: When your subscriber checks their inbox, they'll see an email with a link to confirm their subscription. If they don't click this link, they won't be added to your list.
- Confirmation "Thank You" Page: After your subscriber clicks the confirmation link from their email, they'll see a new page in their web browser letting them know they've been added to your list successfully. Behind the scenes, we collect the subscriber's IP address along with the date and time of confirmation as proof that they opted-in to your list. We record this info in the subscriber's profile in your list.
- Final "Welcome" Email: After a subscriber confirms subscription to your list, you can choose to send out a Final "welcome" email. This email includes the information your subscriber submitted, any custom content you've added to the email, and a link to unsubscribe. The Final "welcome" email option is disabled by default, but you can choose to enable or disable it for each of your lists.
Our signup forms require the double opt-in process, so there's not a way to turn off or otherwise disable the Opt-In Confirmation Email. If you'd like more control over your opt-in process, you can use a 3rd party integration like Wufoo's or host your own forms and use the MailChimp API to pass subscriber information back to your list.
Advantages of the double opt-in method
- When you use the double opt-in method, you're targeting only those subscribers who really want to hear from you. Double opted-in lists have much higher engagement levels over time, which translates to more opens and clicks and fewer bounces and unsubscribes.
- Friends, foes, co-workers, etc. won't be able to sign up other people who didn't give permission to be added to your list. This means fewer spam complaints and a healthier list overall.
- If a person or malicious bot enters an email address with a typo, you won't accidentally send a campaign to a recipient who never opted-in or to an email address that could bounce. Here's a real life example.
- People won't be able to sign up with fake, non-existent, or stale email addresses. They have to have a valid email address to opt-in.
- You're protected from scammers signing up for your list and then maliciously reporting your emails as spam. Since we collect IP information from a new subscriber when they sign up, you'll have proof that they confirmed their interest in your list.