30 Jan Ineffective Spam Filtering – The Cost of Losing Customers
Spam costs American businesses over $ 70 billion a year in lost worker productivity, according to Nucleus Research. Employees spend on average more than 3.1% of their time sifting through and deleting unwanted emails. Spam filtering can help rein in the volume of spam email distributed to individual users, but it still clogs corporate servers and costs IT resource wages to ensure the spam filter is working correctly. One of the costs not often explicitly tracked when reviewing corporate spam is the cost of losing customers or potential customers because important emails get flagged as spam and quarantined as a result. When a spam filtering program is employed, there is always the chance of a "false positive" – meaning that valid business email is being flagged by the program as spam and deleted. Moreover, if a company has no spam filtering program at all, employees can get overzealous in deleting emails and may miss legitimate business inquiries.
In either case, the odds of the customer simply assuming that the company does not return its emails is high, as is the likelihood of losing that customer or prospect. If this becomes a frequent occurrence, it can have a serious impact on a company's revenue, as well as on its reputation in the business community. How can you prevent ineffective spam filtering? The first line of attack is to purchase quality spam filtering. There are many cheap and even "free" spam filtering programs on the market, but most of them are simply watered-down versions of their pricey counterparts. High quality spam protection will significantly reduce the number of false positives and will be able to differentiate between traffic traffic and spam.
Another way to reduce the number of lost emails is to route all incoming email through a central email address so that only one in-box requires reviewing for inappropriately quarantined emails. Occasionally, any widely-published email address will become a spam magnet, but a company can then change the email address provided to customers. Finally, one of the simplest spam filtering techniques is to ensure that employees use their company email address only for business purposes, and that the company firewall blocks employees from downloading any appropriate content.
By Christopher Spence