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Tutorial on email subscriptions and bounce-backs

Sometimes we receive requests from users asking how e-mail subscriptions / unsubscriptions and bounce-backs processing work in SendBlaster. While all these topics are extensively explained in our documentation, we know that a little practice may help to understand these topics quicker and with less effort. So, here is a short tutorial which will guide you through receiving subscriptions and unsubscriptions with SendBlaster, and processing bounce-backs as well.

What you need

You need an Smtp account and three working e-mail addresses (you must be the owner of all of them - please make sure they are separate mailboxes and not aliases):

  • One for receiving subscriptions (in the following example, "subscriptions@mysite.com")

  • One for sending the newsletter (i.e. "newsletter@mysite.com")

  • A "test user" address, which will subscribe a list and receive mailings (i.e. "test@mysite.com"); this last account must be configured in your usual e-mail client (i.e. Outlook Express) so that it can send e-mails.

(Obviously you will use your own addresses: "subscriptions@mysite.com", "newsletter@mysite.com" and "test@mysite.com" are just our examples)

Testing subscriptions

  1. Create a new, blank list and name it "TESTLIST"

  2. Configure "Manage subscriptions" dialog: select "TESTLIST" and enter "subscriptions@mysite.com" Pop3 account details

  3. From your usual e-mail client, send a message from "test@mysite.com" to "subscriptions@mysite.com" with "Subscribe" as subject

  4. In "Manage subscriptions", select "TESTLIST" and press "Download"

If everything was configured properly, SendBlaster will notice a new subscription and add the sender "test@mysite.com" to "TESTLIST" (select "Manage lists" to check)

Testing unsubscriptions

  1. From your usual e-mail client, send a message from "test@mysite.com" to "subscriptions@mysite.com" with "Unsubscribe" as subject

  2. In "Manage subscriptions", select "TESTLIST" and press "Download"

If everything was configured properly, SendBlaster will notice a new unsubscription and will remove the sender "test@mysite.com" from "TESTLIST" (select "Manage lists" to check)

Testing bounce-backs

  1. Add a non-existent address to "TESTLIST"; make sure the domain is non-existent too (i.e. "abcd@123test123.org")

  2. Configure "Manage bounce-backs" dialog: select "TESTLIST" and enter "newsletter@mysite.com" Pop3 account details

  3. Compose a simple message and, from "Send" form, send it to "TESTLIST" using your Smtp account and "newsletter@mysite.com" as the sender

  4. After some time (minutes or hours, depending on your Smtp server), in "Manage bounce-backs" select "TESTLIST", enable "Process hard bounces", "Process soft bounces" and "Delete bounced addresses"; finally press "Download"

If everything was configured properly, SendBlaster will notice a new bounce-back and remove "abcd@123test123.org" from "TESTLIST"

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