The Cons of Buying Email Lists


Finding a shortcut to success seems alluring, whether you’ve just started a new company or are slowly expanding an established one. Are you considering purchasing an email list as another shortcut?


Purchasing an email list can save you time because it has more emails than you could gather in a few weeks or months. Also, you can purchase it for less money when compared to the labor expenditures involved in gathering the same amount of emails.




The negative aspects of buying email lists are not negligible, and this method can cause severe damage to your business. This article will point out those cons. Read on.



Top 7 Drawbacks Of Buying Email Lists



Purchasing an email list means knocking on strangers’ doors without their permission. The truth is that it is a terrible idea that doesn’t work and will hurt your company much more than help it. So let’s discuss the top 7 cons of purchasing an email list.


  1. You could be labeled as spam

No one enjoys spam. It conveys the idea that you only care about making more sales and have no regard for the needs or rights of consumers. You don’t want to turn into that company.


Most people won’t recognize your name in their email inboxes if you acquire an email list. So even though you may think your marketing emails are well written and filled with valuable information, from the recipient’s point of view, you are simply another unknowing business that has invaded their mailbox. They will just interpret your messages as unwanted spam.


  1. Most email lists contain unqualified contacts

Sadly, not all sellers of email lists are highly reliable. You may receive a list of email addresses from people who aren’t qualified prospects for your business, which is unfortunate. Even worse, until you start receiving complaints, you won’t realize that most email addresses are cold leads. The email lists contain several flaws, including:


  • Insufficient or missing data – have the wrong names for individuals on the list.
  • Unreliable information – means loads of email addresses that no longer exist or are abandoned.

Moreover, legal actions may be taken against such activity. Countries have different laws against purchased email lists. For instance, you may violate the CAN-SPAM Act while dealing with US clients or the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a European data privacy law; you don’t even have to work there to be subject to its authority.


  1. Your email provider will leave you in the lurch

Purchasing email lists can jeopardize your email account and your deliverability and brand reputation. If too many of your emails are flagged as spam, your email service provider will quickly lose patience with you. After that, your account might be terminated, you might be penalized, and your email provider might even file a lawsuit against you.


That’s not all, though. Your email service providers could outright ban you from buying an email list.


  1. You could appear annoying

How do you enjoy it when a brand-new company sends you an email in your inbox? The biggest issue with purchasing an email list is the potential for complaints from people who want to avoid receiving your mailings. They find you annoying and have no interest in your business. Hence, your ultimate motif of acquiring leads through an email marketing campaign is unsuccessful.


It’s your responsibility to persuade your prospects that they should subscribe to your company’s email list by providing relevant information and worthwhile offers. But if you initiate this process by appearing annoyed to them at first, how can you achieve your goal?


  1. Contacts won’t be exclusive to you

You might not be aware of this, but when you purchase an email list, other individuals are also utilizing that list. Like you, they also purchased the list and may email the same prospects repeatedly.


Your emails will probably be lost in the hundreds of other emails if you purchase these non-exclusive email addresses used for marketing. They might even have installed filters (or stopped using the email address altogether), so they never see your emails.


  1. Response rates will be poor

One of the best methods to determine whether your email marketing campaign is effective is to look at open rates. This figure indicates how many of your audience’s emails are opened.


So, the first hurdle is to persuade the recipients to open your emails. You have little or no chance of interaction if they delete your emails or put them in spam boxes.


The average open rate is 21.33% when you have healthy, focused email lists. (source) The available rates of the lists you purchase are probably far lower. You should know that you do not acquire subscribers when buying an email list, only contact details. There is a significant difference.


  1. You’ll lose your reputation

Even though most people are accustomed to getting unsolicited emails, they are still not appreciated. Customers who initially interact negatively with your brand, such as through receiving spam emails, may “blacklist” your company because they don’t welcome your business practices.


Moreover, they will recognize your brand as one that likely paid for an email list. People frequently hold businesses that go to such an extent to make a transaction in low regard.


Overall, there are more drawbacks to purchasing email lists than benefits. Marketers who have purchased email lists are now left with thousands of cold leads and emails created by computers. Therefore, it makes no sense to buy an email list. It is not only a cheap strategy to run a successful email marketing campaign, but it may damage your brand. So, start from scratch and make your email list targeting your audience.


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