Cold Outreach: How Important Is Warming An Email Inbox?

Keeping email deliverability high is paramount to success. Understanding how to warm up an inbox is essential to achieve maximum deliverability and ensure your messages make it to the recipient’s primary inbox. Today, we demystify what it means to warm up your email address, how to warm up an email manually, and the top automated warm-up tools in the market today.

What Is “Warming” An Inbox?

Warming an inbox allows email marketers to establish a good sender reputation amongst email providers. Think of it like a newcomer building a positive reputation in a new community. “Warming” is the email warm-up process of sending warm-up emails progressively to show ISPs that you’re not a spammer.

When warming up your email inbox, marketers start by sending as little as 4 messages per day and gradually increase the sending volume over the warm-up period. Warming your inboxes before sending cold emails helps Internet Service Providers (ISPs) recognize that your email account is genuine, which keeps your email away from spam folders. It reduces the risk of your messages landing in the spam folder and ensures a better email delivery rate overall.

a man studies his laptop intently reviewing results from his email warmer

What happens if I send emails from an inbox that hasn’t been warmed?

If you send messages from an inbox that hasn’t been properly warmed, your messages will be ignored. They probably won’t even make it to the main inbox.

Think about it. If you go to a party and start distributing your business cards to everyone without introductions, people will probably ignore you.

The same logic applies in the digital world.

ISPs are vigilant about sudden bursts of email activity from new email accounts. Using a proper email warm-up strategy acts as a buffer that reduces the odds of your accounts becoming blocked and your emails going straight to the spam folder.

How long should I warm an inbox before launching cold email campaigns?

Properly warming up your email takes more time if you plan to send more messages. The best practice is to warm your new email address for at least 14 days before launching your first cold email campaign.

If you plan to send a large number of emails on a daily basis, consider warming up your email for up to 90 days before sending any messages.

Can I stop warming my inbox once I’ve launched my campaign?

While you can stop warming your inbox once you’ve launched your cold email campaigns, it’s best to keep your inbox warming up as long as you’re using the email account for outreach.

Continuously warming your inbox with an email warm-up service that provides automated responses helps keep engagement high. From your ISP’s perspective, this adds legitimacy to your messages and reduces the chances of your account becoming limited.

Do email service providers care if an inbox is warm?

Email service providers (ESPs) play a major role in how email delivery. As a result, they pay attention to patterns and behaviors exhibited by senders. Email campaigns launched before inboxes are properly warmed up can raise red flags with ESPs, potentially leading to deliverability issues or even account suspensions.

The Manual Warming Process: Is It Worth It?

While the concept of warming is simple, its implementation can be a time-consuming process, especially if done manually.

As tempting as it may be to start sending hand-written messages from your new inbox, beware – manual warm-up requires many hours of time and labor. Preparing your inbox using a warm-up tool is much more practical in most cases.

How much does it cost to warm an email inbox without automated tools?

Consider the man-hours needed to send increasing volumes of emails, monitor responses, manage bounce rates, and alter your strategy based on these metrics. Sending more than a few messages manually daily quickly eats into hours you could spend on other work. The direct costs may be zero, but the indirect costs are substantial. ​​

Is it worth manually warming email inboxes in 2024?

In an era of sophisticated email warm-up tools, spending time manually warming an inbox is like using a hand pump to fill a swimming pool. Yes, it’s possible, but there are easier, more efficient ways to do the job. Some cold email tools even offer free warm up software as an included part of their services. Stick around until the end of this article, where we cover a few of our favorite tools for warming inboxes.

Woman working on an email campaign at home

The Era Of Automated Email Warm-Up: How To Warm An Inbox Today

Using a paid email warm-up tool to prepare your inboxes is like having a trusted team member who works diligently and consistently without constant supervision. Automated email warm-up tools save time and provide detailed reports that make it easier to determine which actions to take and when to take them.

For example, many email service providers display analytics showing how many messages are correctly delivered, how many bounces occur, and how many emails land in category folders due to spam filters. This can be useful for monitoring the health of your inboxes so that you know whether you need to swap them out for new ones.

When planning to launch a cold email outreach campaign from a new inbox, access to these metrics makes it easy to tell when it’s time to start sending. They also make determining when to stop sending easier if you experience deliverability-related issues that cause a spam filter to catch your messages.

How much does it cost to use warming tools?

Depending on their features, email warm up tools can cost anywhere from $15 to $60 to warm a single inbox. Generally speaking, the higher the price, the greater the access to advanced features. Some sending platforms also include warmers as part of paid subscriptions. They differ in capability and ease of use but do the job as well as a dedicated warming service.

Our Top Picks: Paid Services For Warming Inboxes

Navigating the world of automated email warm-up tools can be complex. Each tool offers unique selling points, pricing, and unique functionalities. Below, you’ll find more information on five of our favorite automated warming tools that email marketers can use to develop a warm up strategy.

WarmUp Inbox

WarmUp Inbox is a robust yet straightforward warm up tool. It’s designed to ensure your emails land where they’re supposed to. Prices start at $15 per month for warming up one email account. For an additional $15 per inbox, you can warm as many as you’d like.

WarmUp Inbox also offers advanced features like domain reputation tracking and automated follow-ups. It also offers detailed reports to help you maintain a good sender reputation.

It shines in its simplicity, making it friendly for beginners. However, the analytics provided might not be enough for advanced marketers seeking access to detailed metrics throughout the warming process.

Smartlead is a sending platform that allows you to warm up your email as part of its subscription plans. The warmer is easy to set up and use and allows the connection of multiple inboxes. Smartlead includes tons of intelligent features that make getting started with cold emailing and rates the deliverability for each inbox from one to one hundred.


Lemwarm starts at $29/month for a single inbox. The “Essential” plan includes a DNS checking service, deliverability scores, and standard warming features. While it might be slightly more complex to navigate for beginners, the tool is highly comprehensive. It offers more advanced functionality than many other tools on the market.

Warm Up Your Email

Warm Up Your Email from Mailshake costs $29 per month to warm a single mailbox. Higher-tier subscriptions allow the warming of up to 8 individual inboxes. Advanced features include automatic follow-ups and integration for Gmail and G Suite.

The software is beginner-friendly due to its straightforward interface and simplicity. However, the need for advanced features and scalability might be a deterrent for seasoned marketers.

Which Email Warming Tool Is Right For You?

Choosing the right tool depends mainly on your specific needs and familiarity with email marketing processes, and other factors like your email service provider may impact your decision as well.

Whether you’re totally new or an advanced marketer, there’s a tool out there that can make email warming process more efficient and effective. Test multiple tools and play with different warm-up recipes to determine what’s best for you. The key is to identify what matters most to you – weigh each platform’s cost, user-friendliness, advanced functionalities, or scalability, then make an informed decision so you can properly warm up your inbox.

Need help getting started with cold outreach? ClearBrand will do it for you. Schedule a call with a marketing specialist today to learn more about email outreach, warming inboxes, and how we can help you find more qualified leads.

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