About Email Authentication

To improve your deliverability, Mailchimp automatically authenticates your campaign with DKIM, and ensures your emails will pass SPF checks. Authentication is a sender identification tool that protects email senders and their recipients from spam, forgery, and phishing.

In this article, you'll learn the benefits of authentication.

Why authentication matters

Authentication is critical to the delivery of your campaign, and works like a license plate for email. It provides a trackable identifier that shows your subscriber's internet service provider you're a legitimate sender, and it helps your campaign arrive in the inbox.

There are two important types of authentication to consider when sending bulk email:

DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM) and Sender Policy Framework (SPF).

Benefits of Mailchimp's Default Authentication

Mailchimp's default authentication has a few important benefits.

  • You automatically get DKIM and SPF authentication on all your campaigns.
  • Since our authentication is enabled by default, you don't have to edit any advanced settings like DNS records.

It's not possible to turn off Mailchimp's authentication. However, you can set up your own authentication instead, which provides some additional deliverability benefits.

Custom domain authentication

If you use your own email domain, we recommend you set up your own DKIM and SPF authentication. This way, Mailchimp will be permitted to display your domain's information in your email header, which can help improve your delivery rates and make your campaigns look more professional.

To do this, you'll need to make a few changes in your DNS records, so you may want to ask your website manager or domain registrar for help.

Benefits of custom domain authentication

Authenticating your own domain has two important benefits.

  • It removes the default Mailchimp authentication information ( "via mcsv.net" or "on behalf of mcsv.net") that shows up next to your campaign's From name in certain email clients.

    While this works for most email clients, some email clients, like Outlook, may still display authentication information after custom DKIM is set up. This is specific to each email client and isn't something we can prevent.

  • It can help your campaigns arrive in subscriber inboxes, rather than spam or junk folders.

Do I need custom domain authentication?

Before you authenticate your domain to use in Mailchimp, review these questions to make sure it's a good fit.

  • Is your Mailchimp From email address associated with your email domain, rather than a public webmail address like gmail.com or hotmail.com?
  • Are you or your IT team able to access your domain's cPanel or Zone editor?
  • Do your delivered campaigns show "on behalf of mcsv.net" or "via mcsv.net" in the sender details section?

If you answered yes to all or most of these questions, custom authentication is a good fit for you. If you answered no to most of these questions, you can keep using Mailchimp's default authentication that's already set up on your account.

Next steps for custom domain authentication

To authenticate your domain, you'll verify it first, and then edit the SPF record and CNAME records in your domain's DNS records.

Verify an Email Domain

Set Up Custom Domain Authentication: DKIM and SPF

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