2017 State of Email: What we Can Expect in the New Year

2017 state of email

Entering 2017, email continues to thrive while sustaining a long transformation that it has been undergoing for quite some times – literally decades. Throughout 2016, email solidified its place in a world where users use many communications app simultaneously. Email is and continues to be the record of identity for transactions. Apps use email to reset accounts and services send the most important notifications through email. Furthermore, email is the only widely used cross-platform communication protocol that is free from proprietary control. This open nature is why email continues to thrive. With 2017, we’ll likely see these major trends around email continue:

Move to Transactional.

Email has had a long life – 45 years and counting – and during that time, the nature of its primary role has changed. For a time, email was the dominant form of personal communication over the internet. As other messaging platforms have become more predominant in personal communications, email has transformed to being the system of record. Indeed it is an email address that often underlies the user’s authentication & account recovery methods of the newer communication mediums.


With email standing behind most new internet services & account types, email continues to be one of the best ways that apps and services can reach out to users to engage and activate them. With this, email continues to be the foundation of many growth programs.

Becoming Phishing Proof.

Since email is how apps and services authenticate users around account changes, it is absolutely important that email continue its development to becoming phishing proof. Public cases in 2017 have shown how sophisticated attackers have gotten using email and the damage they can do. Email providers like Google and Microsoft achieved major milestones around DMARC during 2016. When “DMARC reject policies” are finally deployed by these and other providers, email will have gone a long way from taking the onus off the user to know when to trust a message.

Smarter Notifications.

Today’s users have many communications apps or services. While email has a well earned place here, it is not the only way that apps and services communicate with users. Apps continue to experiment with and see what is the best mix of notification types. In 2017, we’ll see apps get even smarter about notifications, where beyond sending the right message at the right time, they’ll also send on the right medium at that time.

If 2017 is like the years before it, users will receive & send many more messages than they did in 2016. When these messages are done smartly, they provide users with options and control of their communications.

– Josh Aberant

Thoughts on the 2017 State of Email? Drop us a line below.

email marketing predictions

I’ve seen things you marketers wouldn’t believe. Reactivation campaigns dragging down sending reputations for production IPs. I’ve seen Class C blocks cripple companies during the holidays. All these moments will not be lost like tears in rain…” Because our friends at Litmus decided to package them up in a giant e-book called “Email Marketing in 2020.” Before we dive into the predictions by turning our minds on the future, I’d like to throw this out there, yes I’m a huge fan of Blade Runner. More importantly, I’m a huge fan of thinking about the future, as was done in Blade Runner, but also informing that future leaning vision with today’s reality. In this sense, these predictions are not so much for the future, but things that are here now. Momentum, speed, market direction, adoption, ‘the first to cross the chasm’—these are the mitigating factors that will determine if the future will arrive sooner vs. later.

As amazingly insightful and future thinking as the film Blade Runner was in 1982 we’re pretty close to the film’s setting of 2019 and we don’t have off world colonies or replicants running around (thankfully). However we do have a vision of a world fraught with technology, just as we today have numerous technologies and structure for understanding client behaviors, how to leverage data in meaningful ways and predicting the future based on real data and technology today. Have a read, be amused, find a kernel and ask yourself how ready you are for tomorrow, let alone 2020.

From The Report

Here’s the thing about predictions: they’re as pervasive as opinions and just as dismissible. Marty McFly day came and went, and I have yet to see a truly viable hoverboard sold in Walmart. However, email is—and I realize this is an oxymoron—a far more tangible topic to prognosticate about.

As we dive into these predictions, keep the following in mind: When email was invented some 38 years ago, it was never intended to be used as a one-to-many communication tool, nor could we ever have envisioned the scale and volume of email today. Now here’s what I foresee happening with our beloved email by 2020:


There’ll be much more of it. Never have legitimate mail volumes contracted. Quite the contrary, our startup-centric demands that every new business incorporate email into their products and services in order to compete, let alone exist.


Email’s format will become even more portable. We will see more of it incorporated into things like smart televisions and other Internet of things (IoT) devices. It’s not beyond the realm of possibility to imagine our fridge sending us an email (or a push message, if the app designer is clever) to buy milk and bacon on the way home.


More real-time advertising within email will become important given the increasingly shorter half-life of trends in fashion, retail, music, etc. The future buying and planning of department stores is changing into a more immediate on-demand model, or at least they should be. Therefore, the content of messages will have to keep pace and change upon opening—a morning offer vs. an evening offer, for example.


By 2020, email will take on an even more local flavor: SMTP-UTF8 is the localization of email addresses. People who write in non-Latin alphabets will no longer have to rely on Western characters for their email identity. We will start seeing addresses such as 約翰-多伊@gmail.com ([email protected]).


Over the next 4 to 5 years, we will see new security measures because more of our daily lives will happen over email. Even though we have major players using TLS to encrypt email in flight, we need the smaller ones to join the party, and then move to securing the devices that generate email. The IoT has the potential to generate trillions of messages a day in response to all kinds of triggers, and this tidal wave of email could be laden with all kinds of personally identifiable information (PII). Overall this requires more and more security to be bolted onto the back of existing email authentication standards to further secure the channel.


Make every message count