Return Path Awarded New Patent to Use Data to Measure Inbox Placement

Adotas, Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Email delivery services firm Return Path has been awarded a new patent to measure inbox placement and determine whether email marketing messages have landed in an inbox or spam trap. The U.S. Patent #8,719,356 B2 patent allows the company to use multiple data sources to monitor email delivery rates in order to determine inbox placement rates.

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Below is the Press Real from Return Path:

(ADOTAS) NEW YORK – September 30, 2014 – Return Path announced today that it has been awarded a patent for measuring inbox placement – the percentage of email messages delivered to addressees’ inboxes vs. delivered to spam folders or not delivered at all. U.S. Patent #8,719,356 B2 was issued for incorporating multiple data sources into a method and system for monitoring the deliverability of email – also known as inbox placement – and specifically for determining how each is applied to measure inbox placement rates (IPR).

Inbox placement is critical to the success of all companies that rely on email to deliver marketing messages, account and transactional information, news, and other content. Return Path found in a recent study of nearly 500 million messages that 17 percent of all permissioned commercial email – one message in six – failed to reach addressees’ inboxes worldwide. Most of these misdirected messages are diverted by filters applied by mailbox providers like Google’s Gmail, Microsoft’s, and Yahoo! to keep spam out of their users’ inboxes. By combining inbox placement data from seeds (monitored email accounts) and from a representative sample of actual consumers’ inboxes, Return Path’s patented technology offers the most accurate possible view of email marketing deliverability.

Multiple data sources have become necessary for accurate inbox placement measurement because mailbox providers increasingly rely on users’ behavior or engagement with messages to make filtering decisions. This makes seed data – which is based on machine-monitored addresses included in senders’ email campaigns – increasingly unreliable because seed accounts don’t behave like users; they never engage with messages. Consumer data on the other hand is based on real users’ behavior, showing how a representative sample of consumers engage with email; but consumer data can’t accurately track messages that go undelivered. Because of these limitations the most reliable assessment of inbox placement requires not only a combination of seed and consumer data, but a systematic determination of how to apply these data sources to produce a clear measurement of email deliverability — the innovation for which Return Path won this patent. email