Unsubscribe Links - Do They Work? Do Yours?

16 replies
Warning....borderline rant ahead....

I'm on a few mailing lists that, for me, deliver little value. In an effort to reduce the amount of clutter in my inbox, I've been unsubscribing from a number of different lists.

Lately though, I've seen a number of emails still coming through from senders from whom I have repeatedly 'successfully unsubscribed' several times. A number of these have received personal email requests from me. I've also looked up the email addresses of some of the employees at these firms and contacted them ...with no apparent results or effect.

Thing is, these aren't only the small shops like the 'Content Facilitator'. Some of these are medium size like 'Retail Online Integration' magazine, Target Marketing & Publishing, and some really large outfits like Chrysler / Dodge.

One of the ways I've been fighting back is simply to click the button on my browser that says 'Report as Spam'. The immediate results are nil, but what this does do is identify to the major email monitoring (blacklisting) services about who continues to send out spam. They in turn, report to the major email services such as aol, hotmail, etc so that email from these senders begins to get filtered out and eventually, never delivered, or blacklisted altogether.

In the end, I'm curious as to how you fight back against unsubscribe buttons that don't work. Who are the biggest offenders that you've come across?

#links #unsubscribe #work
  • Profile picture of the author Robert Michael
    lately I've been getting hit with TONS of unsolicited emails, and the "link" to unsubscribe isn't a link at all.

    they simply changed the text to make it LOOK like a link.

    man, that really pisses me off... so I've just started reporting it to their hosting company if they are using their own domain name.
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  • Profile picture of the author Talltom1
    Reporting it to their hosting company is a good idea. Haven't thought of that one. Isn't there some sort of leverage that we have with the host, to make them want to shut down that activity?

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    • Profile picture of the author jakejoh10
      I haven't had any problems with this personally.

      However, it would be interesting if Alexa would offer her input, as I remember her talking about a "big-name" marketer putting up a fight against her efforts to unsubscribe.

      It seems to be very common; quite outrageous in my opinion. If the person chooses to unsubscribe from your list, there is obviously a reason for it, so why fight it?

      It's not like "trapping" them on your list will make them want to read your stuff even more. And they certainly won't trust you as a reliable resource any longer.

      Just my $0.02.

      If you have any fitness or nutrition related issues, head over to
      JJStrength for tips on getting fit and staying healthy.
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  • Profile picture of the author wuser12
    Sometimes they get your email with one autoresponder and spread it to others autoresponders they own.
    I've read some privacy policies in which they say they can use your email for that particular service or others owned by them. So, legally they are allowed to add your mail to other mailing list they maintain.
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  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    I had a few lists that I never subscribed to and clicked on their link to take myself off. After it was "successful", I still got some emails from them.

    They either are using a free tool or they just don't care to take you off the list because the software does not really do it automatically.

    Many times, they take your email and spread it out to their other lists. So when you take yourself off "list #1", you will still get emails from their other lists.

    If you were to use Aweber or Getresponse, you can be assured that once you click on the unsubscribe button, that you will be taken off the list.
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  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    I get SPAM with unsubscribe link that lead to a page
    wit ha entry box to place my email address I want
    to unsubscribe. This is always highly suspicious
    because the link should automatically remove
    the email address the letter was sent to. But
    I find it easier to mass delete than try fighting
    these spammers.

    -Ray Edwards
    The most powerful and concentrated copywriting training online today bar none! Autoresponder Writing Email SECRETS
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  • Profile picture of the author tlangdon
    You need to make sure you unsubscibe from everything... But yes i have 1 person i keep unsubscribing from but keep still getting the emails...

    Tom Langdon
    Helping you succeed online!


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    • Profile picture of the author Haroon Ballim
      If you unsubscribe from email services run by Aweber , thats it you are unsubscribed . Just mentioning Aweber as I have experience of how there system operates . You may continue receiving emails from a certain marketer as u may have purchased more than one product from him , meaning you are on more than one of his lists .

      So I doubt the marketer is simply rea adding or ignoring your request , as once u hit unsubscribe Aweber automatically unsubscribes you from that particular list . The email marketer sending you that email cannot block you from unsubscribing . It may just be that you are on a number of lists from the same person
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  • Profile picture of the author JimDucharme
    Something we preach and preach to our customers is to make your unsub link as visible as possible! If you don't people will not hesitate to hit that spam button! In fact, some studies have shown that the more obvious your link is, the less people unsubscribe. So, it's in your best interest to make that process easy.

    Some big brands such as FAB take you to a preference centre when you unsub and offer you a chance to reduce mailings and narrow the focus of messages to your personal preference. Sorry, I don't have any numbers off the top of my head about how well that works, but there are some articles analyzing this on the web you could google for.

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    • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
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      • Profile picture of the author JimDucharme
        Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post

        Under CAN-SPAM, once you unsubscribe, the merchant has 10 business days to remove you from the list - meanwhile they can in fact, still send you commercial email as long as it complies with the other provisions of CS.

        CAN-SPAM also requires the unsubscribe link to be "Clear and Conspicuous" - those who place it 20 lines down the page or whatever are violating CS on top of what you mentioned Jim.

        You are absolutely right Mike. The reason for the ten days is to give the company enough time to get you removed -- generally I don't think you need that much time, but it's a grace period.

        Just to clarify a bit about the unsub link was that some stats show that if you move the unsub link right up to the top right or even in the header, your unsubs will be reduced as compared to a less visible link in the footer. It's something people can certainly test for themselves and see. Probably not a hard and fast fact though.

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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        Another thing that's become really common is for spammers to include an unsubscribe link that points to a service like Aweber or GetResponse, when the sender has nothing to do with them.

        If you hit the unsubscribe link, it will usually tell you you've already been unsubbed. Then, the next time around, you start getting angry at the service the link points to, and complain to them, rather than the actual source of the mail.

        Sneaky. And very nasty.

        Stop by Paul's Pub - my little hangout on Facebook.

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  • Profile picture of the author yourreviewer
    I am having the same experience. Of late, I have found the "Unsubscribe" link being taken for "This guy is a real person, he checks his email and clicks on links, so let's bombard him with emails and every time he tries to unsubscribe, let's pile on the crap."
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  • Profile picture of the author MrMonetize
    I'm suffering the same thing, tons of emails with no unsubscribe links, or links that say you are already unsubscribed yet they still keep coming. Its downright spam, so I started reporting them to their hosts as well. I think a lot are using self hosted mailing scripts rather than the mainstream auto-responders as they would lose their accounts in no time.
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  • Profile picture of the author TownMarketing
    I have definitely unsubscribed from a few different lists more than 5 times and nothing has changed. As much as I didn't want to, like Talltom1, I also have been forced to start reporting certain e-mails as SPAM. It's a shame but I think we will always run into this to some extent.

    Learn how to DOMINATE SEARCH ENGINES and CAPTURE TARGETED TRAFFIC with small business marketing.

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  • Profile picture of the author Jeffery

    Here is a solution for the future:

    If you have a host with Cpanel just create your own email addresses and forward the email to Gmail. When you can not unsubscribe simply delete the email address that you created in Cpanel.

    Jeffery 100% :-)
    In the minute it took me to write this post.. someone died of Covid 19. RIP.
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  • Profile picture of the author PayPower
    I have the same problem. Sometimes my unsubscribes are acted upon and other times they are not. In the case of the latter I usually reply to the sender asking that they manually remove my email address as it seems their unsubscribe link is not working The delete button is always at hand!
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