Troubleshooting email delivery issues

Last update: 2023-09-22
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Learn how to troubleshoot email delivery issues in Campaign.

 Transcript

Welcome to Adobe Campaign. In this video, we will learn how to troubleshoot email delivery issues in Campaign. Before we start, it is important to understand what we mean by email delivery failures. When referring to delivery failures in this video, this means the message was unable to be sent to our intended recipient. There are three types of errors when a message fails. Each error type determines if an address is sent to the quarantine list. We will cover quarantine shortly.

The first type of error we will cover is a hard error. Hard errors indicate an invalid address. These result in the address being sent directly to quarantine. The second type of error is a soft error. Soft errors might be considered temporary errors or errors that can be categorized, such as an invalid domain or mailbox full error. If these errors occur, the address typically will only be sent to quarantine after a defined send of retries in the hope that the problem can be resolved during the delivery duration. The final type of errors are ignored. This is an error that is known to be temporary, such as an out of office reply or a technical error. These errors are processed in the analysis phase and no emails can send to them. Ignored errors do not send an address to quarantine. Once the delivery is completed, the first place we want to go to look is the delivery log tab from the delivery dashboard. This shows the logs on the delivery with multiple statuses including sent, failed, and ignored. These statuses are key to finding out why a delivery has failed. We can filter the entries by their status, and the most important status to look for is the failed status. Before we continue, let’s understand some of the reasons why a delivery could fail. A very common error is to encounter a user unknown error. This means the email address does not exist and no further deliveries will be attempted for this profile. The solution could be as simple as removing the profile, or we can attempt to correct the email if the details are currently known. Another error that isn’t as common is account disabled. This means the account linked to the address is not active anymore. This is enforced by the internet access provider due to a lengthy period of inactivity. Unreachable is an error that occurs in the message delivery chain. It could be an incident over the SMTP relay, or a domain that is currently unreachable. According to the error, the address will be tried again until the error counter reaches 5, or it will be directly sent to quarantine. If recipient messages are failing with an unreachable error stating error while compiling script etc. The cause of this error is almost always a personalization within the HTML attempted to call some external fields. To correct this, the workflow and delivery content needs to be reviewed to determine specifically what personalization within the HTML is being attempted and whether or not it can be mapped to external fields. From there, either removing the call in the HTML, or we can fix the mapping to the delivery. Some deliveries can fail with an unreachable error stating inbound mail bounce. This means that the delivery succeeded, but Adobe Campaign received an auto-reply from the recipient that matched the bounced inbound auto-reply rule set. This does not require immediate action, but a constant flow of auto-replies could be a sign of an inactive email. When encountering these kinds of email bounces, it’s good to know how to tackle them. When an email cannot be delivered to a recipient, the remote messaging server automatically returns an error message to a technical inbox designed for this purpose. Error messages are collected by the Adobe Campaign platform and qualified by an in-mail process to enrich the list of email management rules. The process is non-exhaustive, regularly updated by Adobe Campaign, and can be managed by a user. Messages can be excluded during the delivery preparation if an address is quarantined or if a profile is on a deny list. Excluded messages are listed in the delivery tab under Exclusions. Some of the exclusion errors are as follows. The double error means the address of a recipient was already in this delivery. The excluded by SQL rule or arbitration rule errors are enforced by the typologies set up to perform some queries to filter out unwanted addresses from the database. The unqualified addresses error means these recipients don’t have a qualified postal address on their profile. None of these errors require urgent action on your part unless you start to see a pattern where the majority of the recipients are getting excluded. This could be because of the fact that the recipient is not in the delivery. The error can be caused by the error being excluded. This could be because our topology sets are too rigid or our data has to be cleansed. Some failures can occur during the analysis and have to be resolved immediately. Luckily, these errors are usually very easy to fix and occur due to some oversight. It could be as simple as forgetting to set the subject line on your email. It is also possible that we will make some mistakes when dealing with the HTML and JavaScript constructs. We can make sure this doesn’t happen by previewing our content first and any rendering issues will appear before we send the delivery. We have now covered which types of errors send addresses to quarantine. This next section will briefly cover quarantine. In the delivery tab, we can also see the exclusion rules implemented in the audit tab logs. Recipients whose addresses are quarantined are excluded by default during the delivery analysis and will not be targeted. This will speed up deliveries as the error rate has a significant effect on the delivery speed. Some internet access providers automatically consider emails to be spam if the rate of invalid addresses is too high. Quarantine, therefore, allows you to avoid being added to a denied list by these providers. Quarantine applies only to an address and not the profile itself. This means if two profiles have the same email address, they will both be affected if the address is quarantined. Being on the deny list, on the other hand, will result in the profile no longer being targeted by delivery, such as a subscription opt-out. You should now be able to troubleshoot delivery issues in Campaign and have an understanding of how to handle various types of errors. Thanks for watching.

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