Blog / Website Security / What is Domain Blacklisting?
What is Domain Blacklisting?
24 Oct 2022

With the increasing number of digital threats, it has become necessary for search engines to determine the difference between legit websites and those that are not legit. The websites that are not legit can contain viruses and malware, but it is not efficient that search engines to list all the websites that are found to have issues. It is where domain blacklisting comes in, and here, we will discuss everything you need to know about it.

What are Domain Blacklists, and how do they work?

A domain blacklist is a real-time database used by search engines to identify websites with malicious content. These websites are identified by their ISPs, and they are used as references to check if an email incoming from them is trustable or not using the email servers.

As a domain is found unsafe, it is moved to spam, and domain blacklisting is the same for websites over the internet. The main way of working is to find a trace of negative behavior; as soon as something negative is found, that domain is blacklisted.

When is a domain at risk of getting blacklisted?

Several factors contribute to getting our domain blacklisted. Here is a list of the top ones:

1.       A domain that has a high bounce rate can be added to a blacklist

2.       Low engagement from the users is a big reason for domain blacklisting

3.       Having a compromised domain that spammers use can be blacklisted

4.       A huge number of users marking your domain as spam will result in blacklisting

While these were the top 4 instances where your domain will be at risk of getting blacklisted, there are many others. If you want to prevent this, the best way is to use authentication protocols that will significantly reduce the chances of domain blacklisting for you. These protocols include:

·         SPF

·         DMARC

·         DKIM

How to check if your domain is blacklisted?

There are some ways of checking if your domain is blacklisted, and some of these include practical assessments to ensure the best results. While there are many blacklists online, being on one does not mean you will be on all others. So, whenever you are checking for being blacklisted, make sure to check on several blacklists at the same time. Some common blacklists to start with include

1.       MTXToolBox

2.       Spamhaus

3.       Spamcop

4.       SURBL

5.       MultiRBL

5.       Protectumus Spam Health

How to avoid getting blacklisted?

You need to act fast if you feel your website has one or more qualities that may get it blacklisted. It is because domain blacklists are not always intentional; sometimes, these can happen even when you are clear of any malware. There are a few practices that can help you avoid getting blacklisted that you can try as well, including the following:

·         Personalized content and attention to the target audience will result in recipients receiving content that matches their interests. Thus, a smaller number of people will report spam.

·         Build your email lists that only include genuinely interested users in the content you will be sharing.

·         Including domains of all links that you include in your email. It can tell you about the dangerous links you might be using, and removing them will make you safe.

What to do if your domain is blacklisted?

If you checked your domain on some online blacklists and it is found on all the lists, then your domain is blacklisted. However, you can remove it from the black by meeting certain criteria. You will start by proving that you are not a bot, and there will be different requirements, including presenting your case and fixing any problems that caused you to get on the blacklist.

When you fix things and get removed from the blacklists, the chances of excellent deliverability will also increase.


Email marketing is one of the most effective and efficient digital marketing techniques, but if your domain is blacklisted, all your efforts and budget will go to waste. So, it is important to know if you are domain blacklisted to solve the issue as soon as possible.

Webspam refers to numerous strategies or techniques used to subvert the search engine's ranking algorithms that would lead the site to earn a higher rank in a search engine than it would otherwise. Some of the common examples of web spam include content spam, comment spam, cloaking, link spam.

You can check for domain spam, website spam or IP spam using the Spam Health Check tool.

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