Having a huge email list with thousands of subscribers is an amazing asset to your business. You can contact them again and again in a cost-efficient and effective way without having to spend tons of money on heavy advertising costs.

And yes, the money is indeed in the list. Sending emails to your subscribers is a proven way to keep them engaged, nurture a relationship with them and down the line, increase your revenue. Awesome, right?

But let’s be honest here, success doesn’t come overnight. Sorry to break the dream. Success comes from hard work, dedication, focus and perseverance.

And that’s when some businesses decide to take a shortcut: they buy or rent an email list.

They want results fast and think that buying or renting a large batch of contact information from random people will give them a competitive advantage.

Wrong, wrong, WRONG!

There are many reasons why you should never, ever, EVER buy an email list. Here are 5 reasons why buying an email list a big no-no.

1. The email list may have been collected in an illegal way.

Several malicious companies and individuals scrape email addresses from websites with special software and then resell them for way too much money. This is an illegal practice that is punished severely under the new GDPR legislation. So stay away from it!

2. Purchased mailing lists are of very low quality.

These lists often contain incomplete, incorrect and outdated data. This quickly translates to poor email marketing results:

  • low open and click rates;
  • many bounces and unsubscriptions and;
  • many spam complaints.

Obviously that’s not what you signed up for.

3. Email platforms will penalize you.

Because they simply do not allow you to send emails to people who have not opted-in. When a large number of readers mark your email as spam, your email platform will:

  • block your account
  • flag your IP address and domain name, and;
  • put you on a blacklist.

Doesn’t sound that good, huh?

4. You are perceived as a spammer.

Emails that are sent to recipients who didn’t ask for them are considered to be SPAM. I’m guessing that’s not the impression you want to leave. Yet, this is how you appear to recipients whose email address you collected by purchasing mailing lists.

5. You have more chance of ending up in the junk folder.

The more spam complaints you receive as a sender, the greater the chance you will end up in the junk folder of your recipients.This has a negative impact on all your email marketing activities. Even for mailings sent to readers who voluntarily subscribed and want to stay informed.


As you understand, there is a lot at stake. Not only your business reputation but also the future of all your email marketing activities.

We’ll repeat it loud and clear: there is no shortcut to success. But it is possible to work up to it which pays off way more.