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What is the double opt-in?

Double opt-in is a procedure in online marketing in which potential subscribers to newsletters and similar advertising circulars confirm their consent once again in a second step. Only after this confirmation is the recipient also on the distribution list

  • Subscribing to newsletters in two steps
  • Serves to increase legal certainty
  • Ensures that circulars are received correctly
  • Currently common method in permission marketing

How the double opt-in procedure works

In the search for the most legally secure method of sending company information, newsletters and similar circulars, the double opt-in was created. It differs from the simpler single opt-in by the additional second step of active confirmation, which the recipient must carry out as a sign of his or her consent to receive such letters. This procedure has currently become a common method, which also ensures that the newsletters reach the addressees correctly. In detail, this permission-based e-mail marketing process works as follows: First, the potential subscriber enters his or her e-mail address in a form on a website. In most cases, the addressee also explains by clicking on a field or ticking a box that he or she would like to receive further information by e-mail in the future. He then receives a message – usually automatically – in his personal inbox. This confirmation mail is thus sent exclusively to the e-mail address stored by the customer. It contains a confirmation link on which the recipient must click to continue receiving advertising or information letters (usually newsletters). The recipient still has the option of cancelling this mailing subscription immediately. This is to prevent that the user is misused by third parties to subscribe to this newsletter or that typing errors in the address entry lead to no messages being received

What should be considered with the Double Opt-in method

As advertising law has become more and more stringent in recent years (keyword EU data protection basic regulation), companies and online retailers must now take special care to ensure that their e-mails are not sent without the express consent of the customer. Unwanted advertising can lead to expensive legal consequences. The Confirmed Opt-in or Single opt-in used so far has therefore become obsolete, and in addition, here the entry by third parties in the distribution lists and thus abuse is theoretically possible. Since then, the double opt-in has been used in permission marketing, not only for e-mails, but also for SMS, apps etc., even if it is not explicitly required by law. At the very least, this gives marketers the opportunity to prove that the person concerned has consented to receive information and/or advertising. This serious procedure protects the company against warnings. It is important that certain rules are observed when setting up the confirmation e-mail. This e-mail should only confirm receipt of the respective newsletter. It should therefore contain neither advertising nor other offers and the message should consist only of the essential standard information. In addition, the customers first entry should be logged for security reasons (IP address, time stamp, etc.). Apart from the significantly improved legal situation, the probability that the addressee actually reads the newsletter also increases because he or she has actively requested it. A disadvantage is that after his first (original) click to register, the user now decides against receiving any future electronic advertising mail. Another risk for webmasters is the fact that such confirmation e-mails often end up in spam folders or are simply forgotten by the customer. In addition, the double opt-in procedure is not least also associated with a higher technical and administrative effort

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