Back to blog

What is Whitelisting And Why It Helps Your Business

If you are looking for an answer to what is whitelisting, you have come to the right place. Today, you will learn how getting your email address whitelisted can help your campaigns perform a lot better and improve the relationship between you and your list.

Are your emails always ending up in spam folders and promotion tabs?

Do you feel like your deliverability could be a lot better?

Been there, done that!

And I came to realize that with only a few minor tweaks, my campaigns were performing better than ever before.

In fact, everyone has the potential to get their emails placed at the top of their readers’ inbox by utilizing email whitelisting.

In this article, we will analyze what is whitelisting when talking about successful email marketing campaigns.

What is whitelisting?

Email whitelisting is the process of adding an email address to your contact list.

The reason why this is important is that your readers may have applied individual settings and filters to prevent (potential) spam mail from landing in their inbox

This means that, even if your emails have a good intention, they may end up in the spam folder, never to be read by your subscriber.

On the contrary, when a customer whitelists your email address, all emails you send will bypass the filters and reach the inbox.

This is because the reader notifies the system that email sent by you are safe and there is no need to filter them for unwanted content.

What does whitelisting mean for future campaigns?

A whitelisted email address is not an excuse to send a whole lot of emails that have no inherent value for the reader.

Keep that in mind because, once a subscriber adds your email address to his contacts, the Internet Service Provider (ISP) will observe your messaging behavior to ensure you do not violate the CAN-SPAM Act.

If you still choose to go ahead and send spammy emails, your deliverability will suffer and hurt your email marketing results over the long term.

How do you get subscribers to whitelist you?

The best way to get your address whitelisted is to simply ask your subscribers to do so.

Here’s a quick example of what this can look like:

Do you enjoy my weekly newsletter! If you want to make sure you receive all my emails, add this email address to your contacts list. By adding me, you make sure that all my emails, discounts, and special offers find their way into your inbox.

Of course, you will have to edit your message so that it fits your tone of voice and your business.

But essentially the goal here should be to make your readers want to add you as a contact, instead of you trying to force them.

Here is another great example to give you an idea.

what is whitelisting - example

When you subscribe to Scott’s Cheap Flights, you get email alerts for discounted international flights departing from airports near you.

The very first email you’ll receive has easy-to-follow whitelisting instructions with a link to a step-by-step process.

How does a subscriber whitelist your email address?

Whitelisting an email address isn’t too tricky. And if you plan on creating a step-by-step guide for your subscribers, here is some information to get you started.

How to whitelist an email address with Gmail

Here is how you add a contact to your Gmail account:

  • Sign in to your account at
  • Add the sender’s email address to your Gmail Contacts.

what is a whitelist - how it works

To do so, click on the 3-bulleted drop-down menu when you open an email and select Add to Contacts list.

Finally, mark messages as ‘Not spam’ (If Gmail has marked emails you wish to whitelist as spam, tell Gmail the emails are not spam).

what is whitelisting dropdown menu

To do this, go to the emails that are currently in your spam folder, right click on them and select Not spam.

How to whitelist an email address with

For, Windows Live Mail, Hotmail, and MSN Mail sign in to your account at and do the following.

If you want to add them as contacts:

Simply add the senders’ email address to your Contacts. By doing so, Outlook will send all future emails to your primary inbox.

Add the address to your safe senders:

  • Hover over the cog icon in the top-right corner and select More mail settings.
  • Click on Safe and blocked senders -> Safe Senders
  • Input the domain URL of the email address you want to whitelist to the Safe Senders list.

  • Go back to Safe and blocked senders and click on Safe mailing lists
  • Input the email address to the list of Safe mailing lists

It might be good to remember that in both the Safe Senders and Safe mailing lists, you can either add an email address or a domain URL.

In both of the lists, you can add multiple email addresses as well as domain URLs.

Whitelisting is only part of the equation

You now know what whitelisting is and how you can land in your reader’s inbox 100% of the time.

But remember – while whitelisting can help you get there, you will need to produce consistently high-quality content to actually stay there.

Therefore, make sure your emails are relevant to your target group by providing the value they can apply in their daily lives.

What is Whitelisting And Why It Helps Your Business
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInPin on PinterestEmail this to someone

© 2010-2020 Mailigen. All rights reserved.