Copywriting
May 13, 2020

924 Spam Trigger Words to Avoid in 2020

Having your emails flagged as spam is the kiss of death for your company’s email marketing efforts.

Even if you’re excluding questionable phrases like “cheap viagra” and “you’ve won a bazillion dollars” from your emails, it might surprise you to learn that terms like “traffic,” “marketing solutions,” and “info you requested” can also be huge red flags for spam filters.

To help you prevent your emails from being flagged as spam, here’s a comprehensive list of spam trigger words to avoid in 2020.

Because we help SaaS and ecommerce companies generate more revenue, we’ve grouped these trigger words into sales, marketing, calls-to-action, and other helpful categories that are most relevant to the SaaS and ecommerce marketers.

We’ve also included some best-practice tips to help you create emails that spam filters love.

How to prevent your emails from going to spam

You're probably wondering if you should avoid spam trigger words altogether. Especially if you have a legitimate use for some of the words on this list in your emails.

Don't worry. That's a super common issue. If you’re a SEO content writer working in a marketing niche then it’s going to be pretty hard to avoid using some marketing-specific trigger words in your email communication.

Thankfully, spam filters are surprisingly sophisticated these days. They won’t flag your email as spam just because it includes a couple of trigger words. It all comes down to context.

For example, if you have to include “marketing services” in your email, that’s fine. But if your email includes “free leads, free gift, free services,” and “cancel any time” in your email—that’s going to set off the spam alarm.

Just use trigger words sparingly and follow these pointers to help your emails land in the inbox, not the spambox.

1. Avoid using purchased, rented, and scraped lists

Purchased lists tend to be full of low-quality email addresses, which can cause high bounce rates and blacklisting. This is bad news for your email marketing and potentially damaging for your brand.

2. Always A/B test your subject lines

This one’s important so forgive us for repeating it: Always A/B test your subject lines! A killer subject will improve open rates and tell spam filters that your email is legit.

3. Email your subscribers regularly

Don’t want too long before emailing your subscribers. If your first ‘hello’ is to someone who subscribed to your blog a year ago, it might be flagged as spam.

4. Write in an authentic tone

Strike an authentic tone that will actually connect with the people you’re emailing. In other words: don't sound like the ShamWow Guy.

To do that, you’ll want to avoid sounding:

  • Pushy: buy now!
  • Needy: inflated, exaggerated claims are a telltale sign.
  • Manipulative: asking for someone’s credit card info? Yeah, that’s spam.
  • Far-fetched: if it sounds too good to be true, a spam filter will pick up on that.
  • Cheap: no need for pre-qualification here… everyone’s a winner!
  • Illegal: just don’t sell things that could land you in jail, okay?

5. Don’t hide the unsubscribe/opt-out link

The CAN-SPAM Act requires that an unsubscribe link be present in every campaign that you send. Yes, even in cold emails.

6. Make sure your domain is authenticated in Gmail

See that big red question mark? It’s an error message in Gmail that indicates the sender’s message isn’t authenticated.

When an email isn’t authenticated, it means that Gmail doesn’t know if the message has come from the person who appears to have sent it—and this can cause Gmail to reroute the email to your spambox.

Messages that aren’t authenticated aren’t necessarily spam. Sometimes, authentication doesn’t work for real organizations that send emails to big groups, such as messages sent to mailing lists.

Thankfully Gmail has instructions on how to fix emails from your domain that aren’t being authenticated. If you don’t know how to DIY this technical fix, reach out to your domain registrar’s support team and ask if they can fix it up for you.

The full list of spam trigger words to avoid in 2020

There’s no need to remember every single word on this list. Just use it to spot any trigger words in your email campaigns.

Next time you’re drafting up an email, use the “find” function in your browser to cross-check your subject line and email copy against this list.

If you’d rather outsource the task and hire a pro email copywriter to write effective emails that avoid these spam trigger words, let’s chat.

Calls-to-Action

Act Now

Buy

Call now

Click

Click below

Click here

Compare

Do it today

Don’t delete

Free

Get

Get

Give it away

Open

Opt in

Order

Order now

Print from signature

Print out and fax

See for yourself

Sign up free today

Stop

Unsubscribe

Visit our website

Competitions

Congratulations

Giving away

Prize

Prizes

Talks about prizes

Who really wins?

Win

Winner

Won

You are a winner!

You have been selected

You’re a Winner!

Ecommerce

Confidentially on all orders

Order today

Orders shipped by

Outstanding values

Sample

Wants credit card

What are you waiting for?

Financial

“Hidden” assets

$$$

Additional income

Apply Online

Avoid bankruptcy

Be your own boss

Beneficiary

Big bucks

Billion

Billion dollars

Calling creditors

Cash

Cash bonus

Cashcashcash

Casino

Cents on the dollar

Check

Check or money order

Collect child support

Consolidate debt and credit

Consolidate your debt

Cost

Costs

Credit

Credit bureaus

Credit card offers

Discount

Double your

Double your income

Earn

Earn $

Earn extra cash

Earn per week

Easy terms

Eliminate bad credit

Eliminate debt

Expect to earn

Extra income

Fast cash

Financial freedom

Financially independent

For free

For just $xxx

Free grant money

Free investment

Free money

Get out of debt

Get paid

Hidden assets

Hidden charges

Home based

Home employment

Homebased business

Income

Income from home

Investment

Investment decision

Leave

Loans

Lower interest rate

Lower interest rates

Lower monthly payment

Lower your mortgage rate

Lowest insurance rates

Make $

Make money

Million

Million dollars

Money

Money making

Mortgage

Mortgage rates

Nigerian

No credit check

No fees

No investment

Off shore

One time

Online biz opportunity

Only $

Pennies a day

Potential earnings

Pre-approved

Price

Prices

Print form signature

Profits

Pure Profits

Refinance

Refinance home

Refinanced home

Risk free

Save up to

Serious cash

Social security number

Stock alert

Stock disclaimer statement

Stock pick

Subject to cash

Subject to credit

They keep your money – no refund

Thousands

Unsecured credit

Unsecured credit/debt

Unsecured debt

US dollars

Why pay more?

Winner

Winning

Work at home

Work from home

Your income

Health & Medical

All natural

Cell phone cancer scam

Cures baldness

Diagnostics

Don’t hesitate

Fast Viagra delivery

Human growth hormone

Insurance

Life

Life Insurance

Lose

Lose weight

Lose weight spam

Medicine

No claim forms

No medical exams

Online pharmacy

Removes wrinkles

Reverses

Reverses aging

Stop snoring

Valium

Viagra

Viagra and other drugs

Vicodin

Weight loss


Legal

Claims

Claims to be in accordance with some spam law

Claims to be legal

In accordance with laws


Marketing

100% free

Accept credit cards

Access

Accordingly

Ad

Amazing

Auto email removal

Being a member

Best price

Billing address

Bulk email

Cancel at any time

Cannot be combined with any other offer

Cards accepted

Dear [email/friend/somebody]

Dig up dirt on friends

Direct email

Direct marketing

Email harvest

Email marketing

Free gift

Free leads

Free preview

Free sample

Free trial

Full refund

Get started now

Gift certificate

Give it away

Great offer

If only it were that easy

Important information regarding

Increase traffic

Info you requested

Information you requested

Internet market

Internet marketing

Maintained

Marketing

Marketing solutions

Mass email

Member

Member stuff

Message contains

Message contains disclaimer

MLM

Multi level marketing

Multi-level marketing

Name brand

No catch

No disappointment

No hidden

Not intended

Obligation

Offer

Online marketing

Order status

Please read

Safeguard notice

Satisfaction

Satisfaction guaranteed

Search engine listings

Search engines

Sent in compliance

Solution

Special promotion

Supplies are limited

Talks about hidden charges

Tells you it’s an ad

Terms and conditions

The following form

This isn’t junk

This isn’t spam

Trial

We hate spam

Web traffic

Weekend getaway


Product and Brand Names

Bill 1618

Copy DVDs

Laser printer

Online degree

Rolex

S 1618

Section 301

Stainless steel

Special Offers

#1

4U

Amazing stuff

Brand new pager

Drastically reduced

For instant access

For you

Free

Free info

Free installation

Free Instant

Free membership

Free offer

Free priority mail

Free quote

Free website

Limited time only

Lowest Price

Month trial offer

More Internet Traffic

New customers only

No age restrictions

No experience

No purchase necessary

Offer expires

Only

Reserves the right

Time limited

Vacation offers

Sales

100% Satisfied

50% off

Act Now!

Act now!

Affordable

All new

As seen on

Bargain

Be amazed

Bonus

Buy direct

Buying judgments

Call

Call free

Can’t live without

Cheap

Claims not to be selling anything

Clearance

Click to remove

Collect

Compare rates

Compete for your business

Deal

Don’t hesitate!

Explode your business

F r e e

Fantastic deal

For just $(insert whatever amount)

For Only

Free consultation

Free consultation

Free DVD

Free hosting

Get it now

Guarantee

Guaranteed

Have you been turned down?

Increase sales

Increase your sales

Incredible deal

It’s effective

Join millions

Join millions of Americans

Lifetime

limited time

Limited time offer

Long distance phone offer

Mail in order form

Money back

New domain extensions

No cost

No gimmick

No inventory

No middleman

No obligation

No questions asked

No selling

No strings attached

No-obligation

Now

Now only

One hundred percent free

One hundred percent guaranteed

Opportunity

Order shipped by

Problem

Promise you

Quote

Quotes

Sale

Sales

Save $

Save big money

See for yourself

Serious only

Sign up free today

Strong buy

Stuff on sale

Success

The best rates

They’re just giving it away

This isn’t a scam

This won’t last

Unlimited

Urgent

Warranty

We honor all

While supplies last

While you sleep

Will not believe your eyes

Other Scammy Words Spammers Use to Make Emails Look Official

Acceptance

Addresses on CD

Beverage

Celebrity

Chance

Congratulations

Copy accurately

Dormant

Form

Freedom

Friend

Hello

Here

Hidden

Home

Legal

Luxury car

Medium

Meet singles

Miracle

Never

Not spam

Passwords

Performance

Phone

Print out and fax

Priority mail

Produced and sent out

Real thing

Removal instructions

Remove

Round the world

Score with babes

Shopper

Teen

Undisclosed recipient

Unsolicited

Vacation

Wife

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