The February 2024 Google and Yahoo email changes and how it will impact you

by | Jan 12, 2024 | Email marketing, Industry news

Starting in February 2024, Google and Yahoo are implementing changes that will impact email delivery, specifically to those who bulk send 5,000 or more marketing and sales emails per day. Even if your organization doesn’t send in bulk, following these new guidelines will increase deliverability rates and are just overall email best practices. Below is more information and our recommendations to help you prepare for these new changes.


What rules are Google and Yahoo implementing?

As more companies use AI tools for marketing and sales, email users are seeing an uptick in unwanted messages. Google and Yahoo are taking action to ensure their users’ experience remains positive and safe, and are implementing rules and requirements for senders. These requirements include specific sender authentications, easy-to-access unsubscribe links and spam-complaint stipulations.


Google email rules update

Google has recently introduced some changes to its email rules aimed at enhancing user experience and improving email deliverability. One significant update involves a stricter evaluation of email content, sender reputation, and engagement metrics. To ensure your emails reach your target audience, it’s crucial to focus on creating relevant and engaging content. Additionally, consider optimizing your email-sending practices to maintain a positive sender reputation. 

Starting in February 2024, Google will intensify scrutiny of authentication measures such as DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail), SPF (Sender Policy Framework) and DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance). Properly authenticated emails will be prioritized for delivery, while those lacking authentication may face challenges reaching recipients. Google will also allow you to include brand logos with authenticated emails with the introduction of their Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI).  


Yahoo email changes

Yahoo has also implemented changes to its email rules, with a focus on user engagement and sender authentication. The new rules emphasize the importance of sending authenticated and relevant content to improve deliverability. Authentication rules, particularly DKIM, SPF and DMARC, will also play a more significant role in determining email deliverability on the Yahoo platform. Emails with robust authentication are more likely to reach the intended audience effectively.


Bulk sending compliance

Both Google and Yahoo are introducing these limitations due to upticks in user complaints about spam emails. Google and Yahoo users have reported getting 95% spam in their inboxes! These new regulations are targeting bulk senders who send 5,000 or more emails per day (in particular to Gmail and Yahoo personal addresses). However, even if your organization does not participate in bulk sending, following these new regulations will increase deliverability.


Unsubscribing and spam complaints 

Recipients should be able to easily locate and use Unsubscribe links in emails. This rule also applies to 1:1 sales sequence emails.  Per Google, for those sending more than 5,000 messages per day, emails must support one-click unsubscribe. Services like HubSpot are already working on updating their email headers to comply. Make sure to check with your email marketing tools to learn more about how they are handling these changes. In addition, both Google and Yahoo are closely monitoring spam complaints, and senders with spam complaints consistently averaging 0.3% or more will experience performance issues if not properly addressed.


Timing of changes

These changes are scheduled to take effect in February 2024. To ensure a seamless transition and minimize any potential disruptions, we recommend proactively implementing the necessary adjustments well in advance.


The next best steps to ensure you are ready for February

To make sure you are ready for these February changes, here are our recommendations:

  • Strengthen authentication: Review and update your email authentication settings, ensuring that DKIM, SPF and DMARC are properly configured for all outgoing emails.
  • Adhere to sending limits: Adjust your email campaigns accordingly to avoid disruptions and ensure you are adhering to the new 5,000 daily limit.
  • Decrease spam complaints: Make sure your content is both relevant and something your recipients want in an effort to stay below the 0.3% spam complaint threshold.
  • Evaluate content relevance: Given the increased focus on user engagement, prioritize creating relevant and engaging content to improve overall email deliverability.
  • Make it easy for readers to unsubscribe: Ensure your unsubscribe link is both easy to find and use.


Here are a few resources for more information:


We are here to help!

By understanding and adapting to these new Google and Yahoo changes, you will not only be compliant but also generate more user-centric campaigns. If you are unsure or need a helping hand, our team is ready to assist you in navigating these changes. Whether reviewing and updating authentication settings, adjusting sending practices, or providing guidance on content optimization, we are here to ensure your email campaigns continue to be effective. Reach out to us today.