7 Things You Should Know About Email Lists

Here’s something all marketers can agree on: email marketing works. In fact, it works so well that three-quarters of the companies using email marketing say that emails offer “excellent” to “good” ROI. Sounds amazing, right? Well, the problem is that not all companies have enough clients or newsletter subscribers to benefit from email marketing fully. That’s why some marketers make the decision to buy or rent email lists.

As with all business decisions, there are positive and negative sides to this one. So, in this article, we’ll walk you through the top 7 things that you should know about email lists:

7 Things You Should Know About Email Lists

1. Will you own the data if you buy an email list?

Not really. When it comes to buying email lists, you might expect that you’ll own the list and will be able to use it whenever you want. The truth is that most email list providers only allow you to rent mailing lists. This means that you’ll get just one-time access to a list or unlimited access within a specified time period.

There is a chance that you won’t even see any email addresses yourself and will be asked to provide search criteria to an email provider who will then send out emails for you.

2. Will you know when an email list was created and updated?

No. Mailing lists that are for sale might have been circulating in the market for some time and contain old email addresses. Using such lists can result in high bounce rates, spamming and other types of harm, and if you want to run a successful email marketing campaign, having an email list with valid and up-to-date email addresses is extremely important.

What is the best solution to know hen an email list was created and updated? Use providers that update email addresses in their database regularly. Instead of buying email lists, you might want to consider choosing a lead generation tool, such as Oxyleads. We keep contact data accurate by updating at least 10% of our database every month.

With Oxyleads, you can get practically anyone’s business email address. It’s free to start. Try now.

3. Will you get additional data? 

No. Typically, when buying a mailing list, you get only a list of names and email addresses. However, without having additional data about leads, you won’t be able to narrow down your search and discover people who can be interested in buying your product or service.

It’s a known fact that people buy from sellers they trust and this trust comes from a relationship. Unlike mailing lists, lead generation platforms provide high-quality leads with the right amount of data. For example, at Oxyleads, our data scientists use smart algorithms that allow us to search through dozens of different sources, including business information platforms, websites for web traffic data and analytics, jobs and recruiting sites, social networks, and more. This way we gather a vast amount of data that you and your team can use to form relationships and start building a mutual trust between you and the potential clients.

4. How much your email list can cost? 

Compared to the actual value, the cost of an email list can be too high.The cost of an email list is usually based on a cost per name. According to CostOwl.com, it can vary from $0.05 to $0.20 per name. However, the price is not the only factor that can help decide whether email lists are worth your money or not.

We’ve already learned that a good lead comes with a lot of data about a potential client. If you buy cheap mailing lists with only names and email addresses, then you’ll have to spend time and resources gathering additional information about your prospects. At the end of the day, you’ll be spending so much more than $0.05 per name.

So, instead of buying an email list and using several other (usually, paid) platforms to enrich your leads, why don’t you use just one tool that does everything?

5. Can your competitors have the same email list?

Highly likely. If a list is for sale, it means that other companies might also be using the same list as you. Again, it all boils down to the fact that mailing lists contain only a few data points about potential clients and most of the lists look the same.

However, if you choose a lead generation platform instead of buying an email list, you’ll be able to set your own filters and use various filter combinations. So, the chance that your competitors will be using the same search criteria is very slim.

6. Are there any chances to get email addresses that generate hard bounces?

Yes, there is a high probablility that you will get hard bounces on your emails. If you buy an email list, you’ll have no way of knowing how often email addresses have been emailed and if they generate hard bounces.

High bounce rates are usually an indicator of issues with your email list because a hard bounce occurs when the recipient’s email address is invalid. If you continue sending emails to such contacts, you might hurt your reputation and affect future email delivery.

Also, if your emails have low engagement, the ISP will make sure the email skips the recipient’s inbox and will land in their spam folder. But if your emails have high engagement, the ISP will automatically make sure similar emails will arrive in the recipient’s inbox.

7. Will you have control over email list filtering?

Even if you provide search criteria to a mailing list provider, you still won’t know for sure how exactly email addresses were collected. A low-quality email list can turn your marketing efforts into a waste of time.

On the other hand, if you decide to use a business data platform, you can choose which filters to use and get much more accurate data.

Quality data helps to get in touch with the right decision makers and doesn’t waste sales reps’ time, so we definitely recommend using your own filters whenever it’s possible.


Email marketing can provide excellent results, but you need to have high-quality contact lists. The more information about the leads you’ll have, the easier it will be for you and your sales team to build and nurture valuable relationships with potential clients. Unfortunately, in most cases, purchased email lists won’t do the job. So, instead of buying one, you can use business data platforms, such as Oxyleads, to gather the necessary data and use it to personalize your offers.

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