Don’t Fear Losing Subscribers When Moving Email Lists To A New Host

moving email lists

Top Email Tips from RocketResponder: It can be really daunting when it comes to moving email lists from one host company to another…but the fear is often much worse than the reality.

Generally it is not as simple as taking all of the contact details from one software provider and simply pressing a button to move them across to another.

In fact some email marketing software providers do not allow transfers of lists at all and, for those that do, there are normally certain hoops through which you must jump.

When it comes to moving lists then there is something which is generally true of most moves…you will tend to lose a percentage of your subscribers along the way.

This may sound like a disaster, especially to list-builders, but it need not be as bad as it might immediately sound.

Why Subscribers May Fall Away In A Move

If you are able to migrate one set of subscribers from one service provider to another then you generally will have to give them the option to come along with you.

Some will move over without any problem at all, others may want to move over but never get round to doing so and others still simply won’t want to move at all.

As strange as it may seem, some people just won’t want to take the trouble to move…even if the effort required is simply clicking a confirmation link in an email. It can just seem like too much effort and they won’t do it.

Those of you who use double opt-in subscriber lists will understand this only too well. There are always ‘ghost subscribers’ who take the initial step of signing up for your list but then never take the vital second step of clicking the confirmation link in the email to confirm their subscription.

I am not exactly sure why some people do this but they just do and it it can be a little frustrating.

So the bottom line is that when you are in a position where you want to move a set of subscribers from one email marketing provider to another, then you can expect your list size, initially at least, to decrease.

Why This Is Not Something To Worry About

Seeing your subscriber numbers go down when you are working your best to see them increase is not as bad as you might think.

For a start it is highly unlikely that everyone on your list reads all of your emails but it is more likely than not that some on your list will read none of your emails.

This can be for a variety of reasons but a common one is that, over time, people’s needs and interests change, so what may have appealed to them at one stage of their lives may not appeal at all now.

There may be others who open the occasional email you send out, but only pay it very scant attention and are not really interested in what you have to say any more.

These are the very people who are most likely to drop off when you move your list and they just so happen to be the very group of people you can most afford to leave behind.

If someone loves what you have to say then they are most unlikely to leave you behind for the sake of clicking a single email link.

How You Can Mitigate Subscriber Losses

Explain to your subscribers why you are moving and set out exactly what you need them to do.

Explain that the move will be in order for you to provide them with a better service and give them plenty of notice of the move.

Maybe you could provide some sort of incentive for your existing subscribers to move with you such as a discount code, special offer or some other item that your subscribers would find useful, informative or helpful.

If you have not communicated with your list in some time then it may be helpful to re-introduce yourself and vow to do a better job of keeping them updated from now on.

Don’t be afraid to send out the link to move to your new list several times because we are all busy and very often emails are missed or forgotten.


So while your list may be smaller after the move, it will almost certainly contain your most responsive subscribers.

Take this opportunity to reconnect with your subscribers or to connect with them better than you did before.

At the same time you will still be building your list so it will continue to grow and you will soon make the numbers up once again.

Patrick Griffin

Patrick Griffin has been marketing online for 15 years. He's a serial entrepreneur and an avid email and content marketing enthusiast with a background in publishing and journalism, including a UK Press Award.

Leave a Reply