Subscribers Type Defined

Deliverability is incredibly important for professional bloggers. What’s the point of sending emails if they aren’t reaching your readers?

Here at ConvertKit we have a member of our team (Sam) whose entire job is making sure your emails reach your subscribers’ inbox, though sometimes they just don't. Here are a few terms you might see in the Subscribers page that are handy to know more about when managing your email list.


Confirmed subscribers are those who either accepted the confirmation on a double opt-in or were automatically subscribed when they put their information in your form with a single opt-in.


If you have double opt-ins enabled and a subscriber doesn't respond to your confirmation email, they are Unconfirmed. If they add their name to your form again, they'll get the confirmation email again and will continue to get it each time they add their information to your form until they click to confirm.

To learn more about why we don't offer an option to re-send the confirmation email to your Unconfirmed Subscribers, click here.


These are your subscribers who have unsubscribed. They won't count against your list total for billing purposes but they do remain inside your account. These subscribers can always re-subscribe to get back on your list.


Subscribers marked as complained have indicated that they believe your emails are SPAM. These reports are sent back to us from the ISP of your subscriber when they click the SPAM button or if your emails are sent to the SPAM folder. This varies per email provider so there aren't specifics to report here as to why your emails may be marked as SPAM by the ISP.

The first step is to check the content of your email. There are all kinds of words and phrases you can use that will trigger spam filters.

Use one of these services to check the spam score of your email content:

If your email scores poorly, change your content to follow the advice. If it passes just fine, get in touch with our support team and we’ll take a look.


This usually happens if:

  1. Our system receives a 'bounce' from the email
  2. The subscriber manually marks your email as SPAM
  3. Your emails get blacklisted by an ISP for some reason
  4. The email address is just plain invalid (i.e. somebody typed it in wrong on the optin form)

You can always email them personally and ask what's going on - there's not much more we can do on our end though.


Bounced emails are addresses that could not be delivered successfully to recipients of email marketing campaigns. There are two types of bounced emails: Hard Bounces, and Soft Bounces.

Hard Bounces are addresses that were rejected outright. Possible reasons for a hard bounce could be because the recipient’s address no longer exists or the email’s domain name no longer exists.

Soft Bounces are addresses that were rejected due to a temporary issue, such as a recipient’s email box being full.

Hard bounces result in the subscriber getting a “bounced” status within our system. Soft bounces are shown in the individual emails for a subscriber, but no action is taken against them since they are temporary issues.


We define cold subscribers as anyone who hasn’t opened or clicked an email in the last 90 days. For subscribers who have been active for fewer than 90 days, we define cold subscribers as anyone who has been active for at least 30 days and has not opened or clicked an email in that time. 

Keep in mind that because of how open rates are calculated (based on displaying images or clicking a link) someone could have read your email without triggering an open. More on Cold Subscribers can be found here.

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