Not all emails are unique.
Contrary to popular belief, not all email addresses are unique. In fact there are a few tricks people use with email addresses you may be unaware of. If you're sourcing or prospecting contact information you may find these tricks helpful.
Gmail's period is cosmetic.
Did you know a period in a Gmail address is only cosmetic? In fact, the following email addresses are all identical. Email sent to any of the following email addresses will all land in the same inbox.
This trick seems to be specific to Gmail addresses. It is most likely a legacy hold over that was in place to prevent spammers and malicious people from squatting on an email address that is very similar to another address. Regardless of its origin it is a useful trick to know and understand.
Look out for plus signs.
This trick is called email address tagging and it is actually an old feature of many email servers. Any domain that supports address tagging can have a single plus sign followed by any valid email characters. The email server will completely ignore the plus sign and the characters that follow.
What this means is the following email addresses are all identical and any email sent to them will land in the same inbox.
Unlike the period trick from before email address tagging is available on many email servers. Two of the most popular email providers that support this trick are Gmail and iCloud.
It is fairly common to see people (especially tech-savvy folks) using email address tagging to mark where they are using their email address. The purpose is usually to use a unique email on different sites or to track accounts on different sites in the event the website suffers a data breach (the email owner will know which site suffered a breach by their tag).
Ensure you clean your email lists and remove duplicate email addresses by removing periods from Gmail addresses and removing email address tags from any email provider that supports tagging.
Nymeria automatically cleans and de-duplicates email addresses for you. When using Nymeria to enrich contact data you can be certain you are not damaging your domain reputation by emailing the same person repeatedly.
If you haven't already, give Nymeria a try. Signing up takes seconds and there is no credit card needed to give it a try!