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In the world of email marketing, change is constant. A marketer may decide to switch ESPs for a variety of reasons, such as the need for improved outcomes, features or an overall higher return on investment for the organisation. Replacing ESPs is a long-term project which means it can be time-consuming and bring some disruption to your business. This article will assist you with your planning phase, by highlighting the tasks you should complete before the migration happens.

Here are your key milestones for planning ESP migration:

  • Data Migration – Guaranteeing that all contact lists, and campaign data are transferred correctly to the new platform.

  • Deliverability – Setting up and authenticating sender domains and IPs on the new platform.

  • Template and Email Creation – Creating and testing email content, links, images and personalisation.

  • Training – Ensuring that all team members receive adequate training on the new platform.

  • APIs – Setting up steps for data integration, reporting and automation.

Before you start
: The first stage in developing a migration strategy is to anticipate for the move. To guarantee a seamless transition, follow these recommended practises before transferring.

  1. Timeline planning
    While every implementation is different, allowing 1-3 months for migration, depending on your needs and resources, is a sensible starting point. Plan to keep your existing ESP online until you’ve completed testing on your new ESP, guaranteeing the new platform is fully functional and your crucial email and sending programmes are not damaged. Avoid migration during your busiest shopping season. Instead, plan to migrate during your quietest time of year. This will reduce risk to your marketing revenue.

  2. Clean your subscriber list
    Whether you're moving ESPs or not, practising email list cleanliness is a crucial element of email marketing. However, it is especially vital when transferring to a new platform.

  3. Identify and organize your subscribers
    Segment your subscribers into most and least active; or give each contact a batch number or ID that indicates how active they are. As a result, switching platforms will be simpler as your subscribers are already categorised ahead of time.

  4. Inform subscribers of the transfer
    Consider providing a notice of the changeover before making a complete switch to a new ESP. Warn them of any planned modifications, if any. You may re-engage with inactive subscribers by letting them know that you are switching ESPs, while requesting for your sending domain to be added to their safe-senders.

  5. Dedicated or shared IP
    Before migrating, review the benefits of dedicated and shared IPs and determine which best fits your needs. If you want to find more information about this topic, consult the following article:

Migration process:

  • Reputation building,
    This step consists in sending emails to your most active contacts in order to earn a trustworthy sender status. The amount of emails sent should rise gradually, increasing the volume on a daily basis, rather than starting right away with a large amount of sends. Make sure your email content is engaging, high-quality, and relevant to give your recipients a reason to open, click, and reply.

  • The Ramp Up
    After 1-2 weeks of reputation building emails, the rest of your email volume can be migrated. This should also consist of gradually increasing volume on a daily basis. While migrating, you should monitor you campaign results, to help show when to speed up or slow down. By incorporating transactional emails, you may accelerate the ramp-up process. This is because transactional emails generate really high response rates, helping to build your sender reputation. Keep in mind that re-engagement campaigns sent to older contacts might prevent progress and is not recommended until after your migration is complete.

Following the methods outlined in this article will help avoid some of the most common issues that marketers may experience. A well-executed strategy can boost your functionality and overall performance with your new ESP. Switching email service providers may be daunting but careful preparation is key, and following these advised steps will help assure success.



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You can ask questions and provide suggestions for helpful email deliverability topics in the Q&A area Q&A – SAP Emarsys Email Deliverability.

And if you’d like to find out more SAP Emarsys, you can visit the community page: SAP Emarsys CX.