What is a Bounce Message?

On the Advanced tab of the MailPoet Settings page, you can choose which email address will receive bounce messages. Bounce messages are automatic emails sent by email servers when your recipient's (subscriber) email address cannot receive your newsletter.

The correct email header for bounces is the Return-Path header. We highly suggest you use an email address from the same domain as your website in order to improve your spam score. For example, if you are sending from newsletter@mailpoet.com, your bounce address should also be an address with the domain "@mailpoet.com", like bounces@mailpoet.com

There are two types of bounced messages:

Hard Bounces

Hard bounces are when your email is undeliverable because:

  • the recipient's email address doesn't exist
  • there's a typo in the address (such as johndoe@hotmai.com) 

Soft Bounces

A soft bounce, on the other hand, occurs when the subscriber's mailbox:

  • is full
  • temporarily unavailable (server is down)
  • won't accept your email because is too large

My Bounce Address Isn't Working!

In certain circumstances, the email address you specify in this Advanced tab will not be used and a different one will be enforced by:

  • Your hosting company, if you are sending through your own server
  • By a third-party email provider, because they manage the bounced messages themselves

What Should I Do With a Bounce Message?

You need to manually analyze the message content to find out what's the specific type of bounce it is and treat it accordingly. In the case of a hard bounce, you should manually remove (unsubscribe) that email from your subscriber's lists.

If you are sending with our MailPoet Sending Service, you don't need to manually manage these messages, they are managed by our service and your subscriber's statuses are updated automatically as well.