the Bento growth platform

A simple explanation of the new List-Unsubscribe header changes

Thoughts by Jesse Hanley • Founder Bento

In light of the recent updates in email marketing, we've received a significant number of support tickets.

A common point of confusion among our customers pertains to the new "1-click unsubscribe" requirements.

Traditionally, Bento has employed a two-step opt-out process for unsubscribing.

Users would click the "Unsubscribe" link in an email, which would redirect them to a page hosted by us. Here, they could fill out a form to unsubscribe. This page also provided options to report spam, view previous emails, and even activate the 'snooze' feature, which allows users to pause marketing communications for a few months.

We chose the two-step process over the 1-click option primarily to prevent non-human unsubscribes.

These occur when third-party tools, such as Microsoft Safe-Links and various anti-virus software, automatically click links.

In the B2B sector, where companies frequently use enterprise anti-virus software, and in the broader B2C market, where users have personal anti-virus software (like Norton), we often observe 5-10% of clicks from broadcasts being automated or fake. We've even noticed that Apple's new Privacy Relay offering clicks every link in an email before the user opens it.

Is this two-step process compliant with the new requirements?

Simply: it is compliant!

The new requirements from Gmail and Yahoo do not affect our process at Bento.

What they require is for us to provide a private, hidden URL that they can use to implement their own unsubscribe button in their products.

Their goal is to allow users to unsubscribe without leaving their inbox.

You may have noticed a small "Unsubscribe" button next to the sender information box in Gmail. This feature is what enables that. When you click this button, Gmail sends a POST request to your email marketing provider's app (in this case, Bento), and the user is unsubscribed.

unsubscribe

In my view, this feature should significantly reduce spam reports and support tickets, albeit at the cost of Gmail and Yahoo exerting more control over senders.

Senders can still link to two-step unsubscribe pages within the body of their emails. The requirements did not mention any changes to this, other than making the links clear and including them in all emails.

For Bento users, we will be adding the following headers to all emails starting next week:

List-Unsubscribe: <https://app.bentonow.com/one_click_unsubscribe/:id> List-Unsubscribe-Post: List-Unsubscribe=One-Click

This will activate the new feature without requiring any action on your part.

If you have any questions, feel free to drop by our Discord and say hello!