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About Email Bounces

When an email fails to reach a recipient, it is called a bounce. There are two types of bounces: hard bounces and soft bounces. Learn more!

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Written by Support Team
Updated over a week ago

When an email fails to reach a recipient, it is called a bounce. There are two types of bounces: hard bounces and soft bounces.

Hard bounces

Hard bounces are permanent failures. In other words, no matter how many times you retry to send that same email to that same contact, it will fail. Usual causes for this are:

  • Bad email address

  • Rejected by spam filter

  • Domain doesn't exist

BenchmarkONE adds an activity to the contact record noting why the email bounced, marks the bounced addresses as "failed" and will not send to the address again. This is to help you maintain a better sender reputation and get more emails to the inbox.

Soft bounces

Soft bounces are non-permanent failures, which means retrying the email may result in success. Example of soft bounce situations would be:

  • Recipient's inbox is full

  • Recipient's server is currently offline

  • The recipient server is overly busy or is currently rejecting messages for a short time

BenchmarkONE will attempt to send to the email address for 72 hours, and if it still cannot deliver, the address would be considered a hard bounce at that point. If we successfully deliver the email within the 72 hour window, there will be no indication within the contact's record and no action needs to be taken. If the email results in a hard bounce, you will see the bounce code in the contact's record as 5.0.0 repetitive soft bounce and the email address will be marked as failed.

Viewing Bounce Activity

From a Contact's Activity Feed

From the Sales Dashboard > Activity Feed > Email Bounces tab (if your plan includes dashboards)

Why is my email bouncing to an address I know is valid?

You may have an email address in your contact list that accepts your emails from Gmail, Outlook, Yahoo, etc., but it may hard bounce when sending from BenchmarkONE. There are a few reasons this could happen, but here are some of the most common:

  • Your content is being rejected as SPAM.
    Filters may be rejecting a stylized, image-based email even though they accept a text-based one. Here are a few articles on how to diagnose if your email content is going to be perceived as SPAM by a recipient server: Staying out of SPAM, 5 Questions to Avoid SPAM.
    You may also want to check out a service like Email on Acid that will analyze the content of your email to see if it has a high SPAM rating

  • Your recipient's server is rejecting emails from a "mass sender."
    BenchmarkONE and other email services are considered mass email senders and some servers may reject emails from these types of senders on principle.
    If you have a relationship with this individual/company, you may ask them to have their server whitelist BenchmarkONE's address. Contact our Support Team at for how to do this.

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