As ubiquitous as email has become in the last three decades or so, it's easy to forget that, like any computer program, software or system, there are bound to be 'glitches' occasionally. One of the biggest is when a legitimate email gets incorrectly routed to your 'spam' folder. When it does, the risk of missing an important email, and possibly even a listing appointment or purchase offer, increases significantly.
In this article, we'll take a closer look at Why Real Estate Agents Should Check their Email's Spam Folder Every Day so that this problem, and missed opportunities, can be avoided. Enjoy.
What, Exactly, Does your Spam Folder Do?
Unfortunately, today's email has the same problem as it has always had; spam. Emails from African 'princes' wanting to rip you off, emails from erection pill companies wanting to sell their product, and emails from thousands of other companies arrive every day. These emails can flood your inbox with worthless junk and waste your precious time looking through them but, thanks to your spam folder, many of them get stopped and rerouted away from your inbox so that you don't have to deal with them. At least, that's the idea. Sometimes, however, the spam filter doesn't work exactly as planned.
When Can your Spam Folder Cause a Problem?
The problem with the spam folder, and it's a big one, is that it can be a little bit too aggressive sometimes in 'catching' worthless or bothersome emails. Sometimes your spam filter reroutes legitimate emails from sources you value, causing you to miss them if you don't check your spam regularly and often.
For a real estate agent that can mean missing an important communication from a potential buyer or seller or a trusted colleague. In today's fast-paced world, that can cause big trouble because, if you don't see a message, you can't attend to whatever that message is about. Contracts, paperwork, calls for assistance with a task or, worst of all, a buyer saying they're ready to make a purchase decision.
Missing these emails can lead to a wide range of negative situations, including time-important tasks that aren't achieved on-time or a customer who decides not to make a purchase because they think you're rude or uncaring. (Because you never replied to their email.) In short, checking your spam folder every day should be a part of your daily routine.
Sometimes your spam filter reroutes legitimate emails from sources you value, causing you to miss them if you don't check your spam regularly and often.
What About Your Own Website's Contact Form?
If you're like most real estate agents, you have and use your website to attract, engage, and convert new buyers. When potential buyers use your website to contact you through your website's contact form, that form is controlled by your website hosting company with a small program that controls how and where their inquiries are sent.
If, for whatever reason, that system is misconfigured, or the reputation of the web hosting company isn't up to regular standards, the possibility that emails coming from your contact us form could be routed to your spam folder. Just like with your regular email, this could possibly cause a major problem if you're a real estate agent because you could miss a lucrative listing, an important message, and so forth.
If this does appear to be happening, you may wish to consider using another web hosting company or contact them to see if they have an updated program that works better. eCampaignPro has a robust email program and many other tools that make email campaigns easier, faster, and more profitable. Contact them today to find out more.
How To Display your Gmail Email account's Spam Folder
If you're using Gmail as your main email provider for your real estate dealings, you should know that, even though it's a decent email platform, Gmail does have a few problems. One of the biggest is with, you guessed it, the way they handle spam. When an email message is incorrectly routed into your Gmail spam folder it’s called a “false positive”. That's when an email was delivered even though it doesn't appear in your inbox because, instead, it's gone to spam.
After this happens the first time to an email from anyone, that person's email address will often be permanently flagged as spam, which is not a good thing at all. In this case, you need to go into your Gmail account's spam folder and make sure to mark it as 'not spam.' Unfortunately, actually finding the spam folder on Gmail isn't as easy as it should be. (As we said, Gmail is decent, but it's certainly not perfect.)
After this happens the first time to an email from anyone, that person's email address will often be permanently flagged as spam...
To find the spam folder on your Gmail account, simply follow the steps below.
- Gmail's spam is hidden by default. That means if you go looking for it, you won't see it unless you know what to do to make it appear.
- To make it appear, hover your mouse's pointer over any of the email folder names like 'inbox' or 'sent mail.'
- A drop-down list will appear.
- You may or may not see 'spam.' If you don't, you will see 'More.'
- Click on 'more,' and a full list will appear with spam included.
- Click on 'Spam.' You will now see a list of all the emails that have been sent here, correctly and incorrectly.
- To mark an email as 'not spam,' first, check the box next to it on the left. A checkmark will appear when you do.
- Next, look up at the top of Gmail's UI (user interface or dashboard) and, with the incorrectly marked email still checked, click 'Not spam.'
- Do this for every email that's been incorrectly sent to the spam folder.
Now that you've done this, you've corrected part of the problem, but you should go 1 step further to make sure it doesn't happen again by adding that person's (or business's) email address to your contact list.
How To Add a Contact to your Gmail Contact List
Adding contacts to your Gmail will ensure that their important messages don't get routed incorrectly to your spam folder. It's easy and straightforward so, whenever you receive an email from someone who hasn't contacted you before but you want to make sure you can stay in touch with, you should add them right away. To do that, follow these steps;
- Open your Gmail account
- Click 'Menu' in the upper-right corner of the screen. A drop-down menu appears
- Click 'More.' (It's near the bottom.)
- Click 'Contacts'
- Click the 'New' Icon. It's a red circle with a '+' sign inside. A window opens to insert their name, email address, and other data like telephone, etc.
- Click 'Save.' (It's in the bottom right corner.)
You can also do this right from the sender's email itself by hovering over the name of the new contact with your mouse. When you do, a prompt will appear asking if you want to 'Add to Contacts.' Click it, and the new email contact will be added to your contact list. It's quite simple after you've done it once or twice.
How To Always Show the Spam Folder in Gmail
Since you want to be able to check your spam folder every day and avoid any negative consequences of missing an important email, you might want to consider making it so that your spam folder in Gmail is always visible and thus easier to access and check. To do that, follow the simple steps below.
- Click the 'gear' icon on the right, upper corner of the Gmail dashboard. (It looks like a literal small gear from a gearbox, round with 6 small tabs sticking out.)
- When the drop-down menu appears, click on 'Settings.' Gmail will then reroute you to their settings page.
- At the top of the large, white box that has now opened, you'll see, from the left, 'General,' 'Labels,' 'Inbox,' and some others. Click on 'Labels'
- About 60% of the way down the new page you will see 'Spam' and, next to it, 'show,' 'hide' and 'show if unread.'
- Click 'show' or 'show if unread,' and you're all set. (Show if unread means that you will only see the Spam folder if there is an email in it that hasn't been read, so we suggest simply using 'show.')
By always showing the spam folder, you'll always be reminded to check it and, if needed, add contacts to your contact list who were incorrectly sent to spam. It's the best way for any real estate agent to make sure that they never miss an email that was accidentally sent to spam, and the best way to keep your Gmail up to date and delivering important messages to you in a timely manner.
It's the best way for any real estate agent to make sure that they never miss an email that was accidentally sent to spam...
Why Marking Legitimate Emails as 'Not Spam' is Important for a Real Estate Agent
Some real estate agents skip over the fact that an email was incorrectly sent to spam, but that's not a good idea. The reason is that there are algorithms that tell every email program what to do, what not to do, where to send certain emails, and so forth. By marking an email as 'not spam,' you will actually train the algorithms to do what you want them to do, i.e., send legitimate emails to your inbox.
Every time you see an email that has been incorrectly sent to your spam folder, whether in Gmail, Yahoo, Thunderbird, Outlook or whatever email provider you use, you should always mark them as 'not spam' following the protocols of your particular email provider. The training their algorithms receive will ensure that important emails get sent directly to your inbox every time.
How To Check Spam with Yahoo Email
Yahoo email, while not perfect, is still free and easy to use. Many people use and trust Yahoo also, making it a good, if not perfect, choice. If you can't see the spam folder when you're using Yahoo, it's very easy to fix.
- On the left side of the Yahoo, the email page is a list of mailboxes under the word 'Compose.' It starts with inbox and then ''Unread', then 'Starred,' and so forth.
- Further down, you will either see your spam folder (it is 7th on the list), or you will see an up arrow and the word 'more.'
- Click 'more,' and you will see your spam folder.
Once you click 'more,' you can either leave it like that and always see your spam folder (recommended!), or you can click 'less,' and the drop-down menu will shorten back to its original size.
How To Check Spam with Outlook Email
Using Outlook is a little trickier because the spam folder is under the inbox folder. To check it and also make any changes to how spam is handled in Outlook, follow these simple steps.
- Log in to your Outlook email account through your computer's web browser.
- On the left side, click 'Junk' and then select 'Arrange By.'
- Select the date you wish to see if spam has been sent to the folder.
- All the recent emails that were sent to your Outlook's spam box will appear according to the date you chose.
Adding Email Addresses to your Contact List is Vital
We've already discussed it slightly, but it begs repeating that adding all legitimate email addresses that have been marked as spam to your contact list is vital so that you never miss an important message regarding your real estate business. Even further, if you've recently started communicating with another real estate agent, a potential client, a contractor, or anyone else connected to your real estate biz, adding them to your contact list should be part of your routine.
As with all of the other instructions we've given, the process to do this will be slightly different depending on the email program that you use but, frankly, it's quite simple. Usually, all you need to do is hover your mouse over the sender's email address, and a pop-up will appear, asking if you'd like to add them to your email list. Some email programs will recognize a new email address and automatically ask if you want to add them, making it even easier to do so
The typical real estate agent still uses email regularly for everyday business. If that's you, and you get a lot of emails, checking your spam folder every day is vitally important to reduce the chance that you miss an email that's much more valuable.
If you have any questions, need any advice, contact eCampaignPro by using the contact form. Thanks and have a great day!