Google is reportedly adding a new "prominent" unsubscribe link to the top of marketing emails, potentially driving a lot more unsubscribes for businesses. It was announced on Thursday at a conference in San Francisco.
According to a report from PCWorld, the link will appear at the top of the message next to the name and email address of the sender. In other words, if you put an unsub link at the bottom of your marketing emails, you won't be making it any less likely that a recipient will unsubscribe, at least in Gmail.
Many marketers will no doubt see this as another blow from Google, which last year, already made it much less likely that users will even see their emails in the first place. Gmail added a new tabbed inbox style, which includes a Promotions tab, where marketing emails go to never be seen again. Ask Groupon.
Google says the new unsub link could help businesses, however, by giving users an easy opt-out without reporting the email as spam, which would make it more likely that future emails would appear in users' spam folders. PCWorld quotes a couple of Googlers:
“One of the biggest problems with the Gmail spam filter is identifying unwanted mail or soft spam,” said Google’s Vijay Eranti, who heads anti-abuse efforts at Gmail. The issue, he said, is that sometimes customers opt into a company’s send-to list but later decide they don’t want the emails. And if they can’t find the unsubscribe button, sometimes they mark the message as spam.
“We want our users to not have spam, and we also want you to reach the user,” Elie Bursztein, who leads Google’s anti-abuse research, told conference attendees.
This week, Google also launched a new search feature in Gmail, enabling users to search by file size:
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