A bounce is the primary way ISPs tell us an email address has a delivery problem: either it can't temporarily receive emails (soft bounce) or has become permanently inaccessible (hard bounce). Soft bounces are often "inbox full" or "can't connect at this time" errors whereas hard bounces almost always come back from email addresses which are not valid, no longer exist or have a serious delivery problem.
That's the theory, but what you really need to know about bounces is this: having lots of them in your email list (particularly hard bounces) will seriously hamper your deliverability!
How come? Picture this: you send out a letter to a couple million mailboxes, but a third of your recipients no longer lives there. The postman will waste time ringing all doors, which the current owners have to answer, which upsets neighbours with noise. And who gets the blame? Obviously, the fellow who dared send letters to so many outdated addresses - which means you.
Your sender reputation then goes down the tubes, with bad word of mouth spreading so quickly your letters will not even be delivered to your valid, existing mailboxes!
This is why E-goi automatically marks as invalid some email addresses on your lists. Hard bounces are marked as invalid immediately, while soft bounces will be marked as invalid after a number of repeated undeliverables in a given time frame.
What happens with the contacts that have invalid emails?
Don't worry, those contacts will stay on your list!
A little red bullet will appear beside each email marked as invalid, and you will be disable to send communications over them by email.
The good news: those contacts will remain Active on your List and you can keep sending communications over them by SMS :)
Can I adjust the criteria for marking bounces?
The rules we use to mark the bounces on your lists are based on email marketing standards and best practices, but you can slightly adjust the way they work. Just follow the steps below:
1) Go to the "Lists" menu, head to the list you want to edit and click on "Options".
2) The list settings page will be displayed. Click on the "Bounces" section and you should see the "Auto-remove soft-bouncing subscribers" option. Click on "Customise" and choose how aggressively you want E-goi to remove soft bounces in this list. The default is "Permissive", which keeps soft bounces in the list even if they bounce for a number of days. If you want them removed faster (in fewer days), change this to "Moderate" or "Aggressive".
3) Hit "Save" in the lower right corner to apply your changes to this list. Repeat these steps in any other list if necessary.
Keep in mind the above applies to soft bouces only - hard bounces will always be removed by E-goi the first time you email them. This can't be changed, as hitting bad addresses always makes a significant dent in your deliverability and sending reputation.