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Why use a subdomain for email marketing?

Jorge Ferreiro

Updated: Sep 19, 2023

Are you caught in the eternal debate of domain versus subdomain for your email marketing endeavors on ZooTools?

If you're grappling with questions about the benefits of using a subdomain, you're not alone. In this blog, we're going to delve into the world of email marketing, dedicated IPs, IP warmup, and why sending emails with a subdomain is a recommended strategy that can supercharge your email marketing campaigns.

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Understanding the Domain vs. Subdomain Dilemma

Before we dive into the benefits of subdomains, let's clarify the distinction between a domain and a subdomain.

A domain is a unique name that identifies a website, such as "," while a subdomain is an extension of the domain that can be directed within the hosting account, like ""

Now, why should you set up a subdomain if you're already using your company's top-level domain for email marketing? Let's explore the compelling reasons.

Reason 1: Isolating email reputation

In the world of email deliverability, reputation is paramount. Your domain and subdomain significantly impact your reputation, influencing where your emails land—whether it's the inbox, junk folder, or promotions tab.

Imagine this scenario: your sales team prioritizes quantity over quality, perhaps even purchasing email lists. To establish a meaningful relationship with subscribers, you need their permission to send emails and build trust over time. However, your domain might get blacklisted due to poor internal practices, affecting the fate of your emails.

Subdomains tend to have separate reputations, shielding your sending infrastructure from the negative impacts of other teams' email practices. Over time, your subscribers and their ISPs will come to recognize and trust your sending subdomain.

However, as explained in the email deliverability post, if you send cold sales emails is better to buy a new domain that you only used for it. While subdomains could isolate reputations, email clients are not stupid and can easily link domains.

Reason 2: Easier to Setup Email Authentication Policies

Achieving inbox placement involves several steps, and authentication is a crucial one. Properly configuring SPF and DKIM and ensuring they pass muster is essential.

ISPs like Gmail and Microsoft now consider DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance) when evaluating a sender's reputation. By using a subdomain, you gain the ability to set specific authentication policies, allowing you to focus on strict alignment.

Maintaining consistency between your envelope-from, sending domain, and DKIM domain is vital for strict alignment and avoids raising suspicion with ISPs.

Reason 3: Tracking Is much Simpler

When you send emails from a subdomain rather than your company's top-level domain, tracking becomes more manageable.

Your subdomain remains distinct from other domains and subdomains used within your organization. This separation is invaluable for measuring crucial email engagement metrics like clicks, opens, and forwards for specific campaigns. Armed with this data, you can continually refine and enhance future email campaigns for better overall success.

Reason 4: Maintain Business Continuity

Imagine the nightmare scenario: an email sent from your top-level domain contains a broken link, leading to your domain's blacklisting. Consequently, all your company's emails, including corporate communications, bounce. This would undoubtedly cause a major headache for your IT team and the entire organization.

Using a subdomain gives you control over your reputation and authentication policies, safeguarding your email marketing efforts from such catastrophic disruptions. It ensures that one isolated incident doesn't jeopardize your company's email communication.

Which Email Subdomain Choose to Send Emails?

make sure to choose a recognizable subdomain that resonates with your audience and reinforces your brand identity.

Some examples of subdomains:






On ZooTools, you can always update your sending email domain later on the Domain settings page. You can add as many emails as you want and pick the right one when sending an email campaign.

Common question: Dedicated IPs and Subdomain Reputation

A common question among ZooTools users is whether they should invest in a dedicated IP to build their subdomain's reputation, even if they have low email volume.

How does Automated IP and Domain Warmup Feature work?

Learn how ZooTools automatically warms up your email IP address and domain

Read article

The general recommendation is that a dedicated IP makes sense when you're sending around 500,000 emails per month or if you send emails frequently.

However, exceptions exist, such as international senders who may need dedicated IPs to whitelist their emails on specific networks. If you have doubts, please reach out.

Beware of Shared IP Pools

For those using third-party email marketing platforms on shared servers, it's crucial to understand the potential impact of others' email practices on the same server.

Shared IP pools can pose deliverability challenges if not managed properly. If a sender on the shared IP pool lands on a blacklist or faces blockage from an ISP, it affects all other senders on that pool.

To mitigate these risks, inquire about the shared IP pool's characteristics, including the number of senders, volume, and categories, or buy a dedicated IP to isolate and manage your reputation.

Last thoughts: The Subdomain Advantage

In the end, sending emails from a subdomain offers numerous advantages. It enhances deliverability, safeguards your reputation, simplifies authentication, and provides robust tracking capabilities.

Whether you're a high-volume sender or a small-scale operation, harnessing the power of subdomains can elevate your email marketing game to new heights.

Remember, in the world of email marketing, it's all about control, reputation, and consistency. So, keep calm and email on with the confidence that a subdomain can provide.

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