Return Path’s AI-Powered SmartSeeds Improve Email Deliverability Monitoring

Mar 28, 2019

Global data solutions provider Return Path announced the launch of SmartSeeds, a new addition to its industry-leading deliverability data platform. Powered by advanced analytics and machine learning, SmartSeeds work together with Return Path’s existing sources of deliverability data—Consumer Network and CoreSeeds—to provide marketers with unparalleled visibility into their email deliverability. Unlike traditional seed accounts, SmartSeeds go beyond simple placement and filtering data to provide insights into subscriber engagement and engagement-based filtering.

Traditional seed accounts—like Return Path’s CoreSeeds—are essentially test-accounts that allow marketers to gather valuable insights and identify deliverability issues at various mailbox providers. SmartSeeds take this concept to the next level with artificially intelligent personas that mimic the behaviors of real-life users. Based on historical data combined with advanced analytics, these personas each interact with email in different ways, choosing which emails to open and which to leave unread, replicating the engagement patterns of real email recipients. SmartSeeds allow marketers to monitor individual campaign performance, including engagement-based inbox placement and Gmail category assignment, providing a more complete picture over overall deliverability.

Engagement-based insights are crucial to understanding and maximizing email deliverability. However, recent policy changes at Google have limited access to Gmail data, making it more difficult for all marketers to accurately assess their deliverability at this critical mailbox provider, regardless of the tools they use. Since these changes were announced in October, Return Path has ramped up the development of SmartSeeds—an idea that dates back to early 2018—in order to replace this important data source.

Existing Return Path customers will have access to SmartSeeds, which are currently set up to provide deliverability and engagement insights at Google. Return Path has leveraged its relationship with Google to ensure that SmartSeeds align with their new data policy. In future iterations, SmartSeeds will be expanded to include data from other major mailbox providers.

In addition, Return Path is pleased to introduce a new advancement in reporting to provide customers with a better understanding of their email performance: Directive Reporting. This new offering is delivered through the Return Path service team and offers a more streamlined, intuitive way to access data from the Return Path Platform. Directive Reporting helps marketers uncover the root cause of deliverability and placement issues using data visualizations, benchmarking, and data science modeling, and provides a step-by-step action plan for resolving these issues. Current Return Path customers can take advantage of Directive Reporting through a service engagement.

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