For our customers looking for the best possible email deliverability, Nutshell supports a number of custom DNS records to enhance your email reputation. Here’s how to set it up, and what it all means.
Who this is for
This article is for customers who are already following our recommendations on email deliverability. To take advantage of the tools in this article, you will need the ability to add records to your domain’s name server or DNS. Often, your DNS server is provided by your domain registrar, e.g. GoDaddy or Namecheap.
Verify your email addresses and generate the necessary records
From the sender addresses section of your account, any admin can add an email address to be used for Nutshell Marketing messaging. Once the verification email is processed, the neccesary records for setting up DKIM, SPF, and custom email tracking domains in your DNS will be provided by clicking Configure next to the email addresses.
Personalize your Return-Path, DKIM, and SPF domains
Emails sent with Nutshell Marketing always come from your email address. But there are other email routing headers in the messages Nutshell sends which refer to our domain names and those of our infrastructure provider, Amazon Web Services (AWS). You may see these as depotstreetmail.com and amazonses.com.
One of the core features of Nutshell Marketing is that we receive the bounces to your marketing outreach and use them to keep your audience lists clean. To do this, even though messages are sent with a From address that belongs to you, we use a Return-Path header which instructs bounces to come to us. (Services like Mailchimp and Constant Contact use this same technique).
Nutshell supports personalizing this Return-Path, which also has the advantage of removing the “via amazonses.com” label in Gmail. (See the above screenshot). You can personalize your headers by contacting our team. Soon, we’ll add the ability to do this directly within Nutshell.
When you have personalized the Return-Path, you will also configure custom DKIM and SPF records. These are additional records which you place on your domain name, which authenticate messages sent by Nutshell, telling mail recipients that Nutshell Marketing is permitted to send email on your behalf.
When setting up these domains, you will be given an MX record for nutshell.yourdomain.com. This is what allows Nutshell to receive bounces, and does not change anything about your company’s main MX records or mail handling.
Nutshell will provide you with all of the necessary domain names to ensure the above coverage. You will need to add all of the CNAME, TXT, and MX records that we provide to your domain name. If you can get logged in to Godaddy or your DNS management page, we’d be happy to screen share with you to sort this out!
What about DMARC?
DMARC is the strictest form of protection for messages sent by your domain. If you have set up a custom Return-Path, DKIM, and SPF, then the messages sent with Nutshell are considered “DMARC-aligned.”
If you already have DMARC enabled for your domain, then you must set up DKIM and SPF in Nutshell so that your messages reach your recipients’ inboxes. You can use a tool like MXToolbox to check if your domain has enabled DMARC.
You can choose to set up DMARC for your domain if you are certain that all other messages sent from your domain are also DMARC-aligned. This includes messages sent from systems like Zendesk or Wordpress which may send email on your behalf.
Custom email tracking domains
You can further personalize your Nutshell Marketing campaigns and protect your sender reputation with a custom link tracking domain. Normally, links in your messages sent with Nutshell Marketing look like `depotstreetmail.com/email/link/1234` or 'maynardstreetdelivery.com/email/link/1234'—this allows Nutshell to track your recipients’ engagement.
With a custom tracking domain, these links will look like click.yourdomain.com/email/link/1234. This brings along the reputation of your domain to the emails that you send.
Nutshell will provide you with a record that points your domain to our services, secured via an SSL certificate that we manage.