About unsubscribes

Article author
Miguel Panayotty
  • Updated

An unsubscribe is an event from a subscriber asking to be removed from your mailing list. These events are also referred to as opt-outs.


Every bulk marketing email must include an unsubscribe link. This is the law in the United States (CAN-SPAM Act) and in Canada (CASL). You can read more about the requirements by visiting the sites for both laws. The laws state that an unsubscribe request must be removed from a mailing list within 10 business days and a record should be kept of that unsubscribe for posterity. Gmail and Yahoo rules for mass senders require that unsubscribes be honored within 2 days.



What happens in WordFly when a person unsubscribes

When a person unsubscribes globally, their address will be suppressed from future list imports and the current list that was used to mail the subscriber. The subscriber profile will still exist in WordFly but they will not receive additional emails unless the opt-out flag is removed from their record or if the opt-out is overridden for a particular list.


Unsubscribe events can be reviewed in several areas of WordFly:

  • Reporting > Campaign Reporting
    Select the Unsubscribes tab to view all addresses that unsubscribed.
  • Subscriber > Subscriber Search
    Look up an unsubscribed address and see their flagged Sending Status from their profile landing page.
  • Reporting > Export Data
    You can export unsubscribe events for a campaign or for your entire account.
  • List Summary page
    After importing a new list, review unsubscribes under the Subscriber Import Issues section > Unsubscribes tab.



When you see a high unsubscribe rate

As thrilling as it is to see your list grow, it can be discouraging when customers say, “No thanks.” Why do once-engaged subscribers become brand deserters? Here are the three most popular reasons.



Receiving too many emails is the number one reason subscribers leave. So, how often should you send? There’s no one-size-fits-all answer but generally, once per week is the minimum. From there you’ve got to monitor your email metrics and test different cadence levels. Finding that perfect frequency fit for your program will take data analysis, testing and asking your subscribers. Frequency and content are inextricably linked. Sending the same message too often is a common mistake. Which takes us to point number two.



Sending content that subscribers don’t care about is a sure fire technique to shrink your list. But irrelevance is more than just copywriting that falls flat. Great email is about also about novelty, excitement and providing something they don’t get anywhere else in the inbox. Mix it up with animated gifs, video and new design elements. Throw some emoji in that subject line. Keep things interesting. Don’t forget your data. Sending truly relevant content means you’re using all the data at your fingertips including previous purchase history, email activity and anything else you collect online. Use it to serve up a dynamic email with content just for that subscriber. Think like an advertiser and get their attention.



If your email looks like it just walked out of 1998, take steps to update. Own the design of your email and keep it fresh. Review your email design against web design trends at least once a year. Good email design is easy to read, mobile-optimized, accessible, and engaging.