How to Prepare for New Email Requirements from Google and Yahoo - 2024

Dec 8, 2023

When it comes to the evolving world of email communication, ensuring both security and top-tier user experience is paramount. Gmail and Yahoo, recognizing the evolving nature of online threats, have introduced new requirements for bulk senders. As of February 2024 for Gmail and the first quarter of 2024 for Yahoo, these changes will aim to drastically enhance email security, reduce spam, and improve overall user satisfaction.

In this blog, our team of email marketing experts will dive more into the specifics and how you and your business can prepare for these significant changes.

Gmail's Requirements

Evolution of Gmail Security

Gmail is historically known for its application of cutting-edge defenses utilizing AI and has been instrumental in blocking spam, phishing, and malware up to this day, so much so that Gmail has over 1.8 billion active users as of 2023, which means that approximately 22% of the world's population uses Google's mail service. 

However, research shows that with the advancement of technology comes adaptive cybercriminal activity, and in the past year alone, both the rate and cost of data breaches have rapidly increased at alarming speed. The complexity of online threats and hacks has prompted the introduction of new requirements by Google for large senders. And these are the most innovative adaptations we’ve seen yet.


Key Requirements for Bulk Senders in Gmail

  • Authentication of Email:
    • Bulk senders are now required to strongly authenticate their emails using established best practices by the Google team. This ensures the legitimacy of the email source and closes potential loopholes exploited by attackers. If you’re a Hubspot user, best practices on how to authenticate are located in one of their most recent blog posts.
  • Easy Unsubscription:
    • In an online world where almost anything is available at the click of a button, unsubscriptions should be no exception. Large senders must provide a one-click unsubscribe option, streamlining the process for users to opt out of unwanted emails. In Gmail's new process, unsubscription requests should be processed within two days, enhancing user convenience.
  • Sending Wanted Emails:
    • Pesky spam, anyone? Gmail is also enforcing a clear spam rate threshold for bulk senders to reduce unwanted messages in users' inboxes. This industry-first approach adds an extra layer of protection for the user, further enhancing the spam-free email experience.

Yahoo Mail's Requirements

Yahoo's Mission and Sender Best Practices

Yahoo has always emphasized its core mission to deliver messages that consumers want to receive and filter out unwanted messages and spam. While not as widely used as Gmail, Yahoo Mail boasts a hefty 225 million active users per month. In addition, Yahoo is still America's largest video ad network, earning around $200 million in 1 second of advertisement. 

In the world of email marketing, the savviest experts know that it’s important to adapt email campaigns to match the requirements of the inboxes your impactful messages reach. In addition to this blog, you’ll be able to find sender best practices for Yahoo Mail carefully documented on their Sender Hub, with postmaster teams always ready to assist the sending community for optimal results.

Key Requirements for Bulk Senders in Yahoo Mail

  • Authentication of Email:
    • Similar to Google, Yahoo will require bulk senders to implement stronger email authentication using industry standards such as SPF, DKIM, and DMARC. This ensures users can be more confident about an email's source before they click on the message. Again, the process on how to go about achieving this can be found in Hubspot’s recent blog post.
  • Easy Unsubscription:
    • Again, senders must support the movement of the one-click unsubscribe and honor users' requests within two days. This initiative aims to simplify the process of opting out of unwanted emails for a seamless user experience similar to Gmail.
  • Sending Wanted Emails:
    • To align with its key mission to deliver messages that users want to receive, Yahoo will enforce a threshold to ensure users' inboxes are not cluttered with unsolicited or irrelevant emails, fostering a spam-free mailbox and stress-free environment.

Industry Collaboration for a Secure Email Environment

Both Gmail and Yahoo stress the importance and need for industry-wide collaboration and working together to create a secure email environment for all users around the world. Neil Kumaran, Group Product Manager of Gmail Security & Trust, expresses his shared commitment with his peers at Yahoo: 

“We firmly believe that users worldwide deserve a more secure email environment, with fewer unwanted messages for an improved overall experience. We look forward to working with peers across the industry to boost the adoption of these email standards that benefit everyone.” 

Closing Thoughts

As the email landscape evolves to combat new cyber threats and adapt to technology advancements, these changes by Yahoo and Google act as proactive measures to address security concerns and improve the overall experience for users. Bulk senders, from small businesses that run out of the basement to multi-million dollar corporations, are encouraged to stay informed, collaborate proactively with email providers, and implement the necessary adjustments as soon as possible to ensure compliance with the evolving standards.

At Fable Heart Media, we believe strongly in the collective effort of the email community and are working around the clock to ensure our clients are ready to face whatever the digital world throws at them, from designing a flourishing and SEO-rich website to developing a brand-consistent email campaign strategy that checks every box and dots every “i”.

When you’re ready to create a secure, user-friendly, and spam-free environment for all of your email subscribers, send us a message or give us a call. Oh, and don’t forget to check out the wealth of other digital marketing resources in our blog.


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