Most website contact forms send an email to the website owner with the message the customer/user has submitted. When not correctly set up, the emails sent from the website can go straight to the Spam/Junk email folder, or even worse are rejected by the receiving email server so that they don’t get through at all.

If your contact form emails are going to junk, here’s some steps to diagnose what’s going wrong:

  1. In a browser tab, open the website, which provides a fantastic (and free) tool for analyzing the spamminess of your email. Keep this browser tab open.
  2. In another browser tab, copy the one-off email address provided by the mail-tester tool into the recipient field of your contact form (make a note of the previous value, so you can change it back afterwards), so that the email from your form is sent to the given address, and save the change.
  3. In a third browser tab, open your contact form on your website and submit a test message through it, to trigger an email to the email address.
  4. Change your contact form configuration back so that email submissions go to the usual email address for the form (that you noted above in step 2).
  5. On the browser tab, click the “Then check your score” button.
  6. Review the results of the report. Typically, the setting that makes the most difference is called “DKIM”, but “SPF” settings are also easy to configure. It helps if the “From” address (that the email comes from) does actually exist.

Other tips:

  • If the contact form you’re using doesn’t let you configure the From address for the email, you may need to use a different way of generating the contact form. In WordPress, this could mean using a plugin that supports that feature, such as Contact Form 7.
  • If your DKIM and SPF settings aren’t right, you may need technical help from a web developer to fix them. If you want to test out a potential SPF value for your domain name, you can do so here without actually needing to set it first:

If you need a hand with anything mentioned above, just get in touch! If this post helped you, please thank us below and it’ll encourage us to share more in future.

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