|Doc. Number||Article Title||Effective Date||Version|
|FHC-XX||Adding an SPF Record||May 03, 2023||0.3|
This article includes the following topics:
- What is a DNS record?
- Why use one?
- What do I do?
- What exactly am I adding?
- Additional information
- Intervention by Forth
What is a DNS record?
A DNS (Domain Name System) record contains information about your domain. For more information please visit the Wikipedia article on DNS Records.
Specifically, we are asking you to add a Sender Policy Framework (SPF) record as a TXT DNS record. This is how we are going to authorize our domain to send emails as yours. You can find more information again on Wikipedia.
Why use one?
Setting up the SPF record to authorize our domain to send emails as yours:
- Helps your company's e-marketing campaigns work to their fullest potential. Adding this record will help with YOUR email delivery.
- Helps prevent emails from going to spam. When a server receives a message appearing to come from one domain but actually coming from another without an SPF record authorizing the actual sender, emails can easily be flagged as Spam/Junk.
- Helps our email servers' reputation. The success of email campaigns and other messaging somewhat depends on our servers' reputation throughout the internet. The more emails going to Spam and Junk the poorer our reputation. Since having our clients add an SPF record helps with this, it is to everyone's advantage to use the CRM to have their SPF records updated as advised below.
What do I do?
You are going to need to add the SPF TXT record with your domain hoster. The company hosting your domain should have support information explaining how to update or add DNS records.
As an example, you can visit GoDaddy's article on setting up a TXT record. Usually, this is a fairly simple process and only requires you to navigate to the section in the host's domain management portal and cut and paste the information we've provided here into the record.
What exactly am I adding?
This depends on your current record. You can look up the current record by going here. Once you determine which is your case, take the following steps:
If you have no SPF record
You will need to add the below to your DNS Records as a new TXT record.
v=spf1 a mx ptr include:client_spf.setforth.com
If you have an existing SPF record
You will want to take the current record and alter it so setforth.com is included as authorized to send emails. Do this by adding include:client_spf.setforth.com to the current record.
Current Record: v=spf1 a mx ptr include:client_spf.outlook.com
Change to: v=spf1 a mx ptr include:client_spf.outlook.com include:client_spf.setforth.com
In cases where the SPF record includes ~all or -all, update the record IMMEDIATELY. The -all portion of the record is saying any domain not listed in the record is NOT AUTHORIZED to send emails as the domain. This needs to be fixed immediately since each time a message comes from setforth.com, it is causing further damage to our reputation and is also likely causing most of your emails to end up marked as spam or junk with your clients.
~all must be placed at the end of the SPF record.
Current Record: v=spf1 a mx ptr include:client_spf.outlook.com ~all
Change to: v=spf1 a mx ptr include:client_spf.outlook.com include:client_spf.setforth.com ~all
- Adding this record does not guarantee your emails will be delivered successfully. It will help but there are still factors that can cause your message to go to spam/junk. These include:
- Contents - certain language used in an email message can cause some servers to flag your emails as spam/junk.
- Repeated Messaging - Sending the same message to the same address over and over again can also cause your emails to be flagged as spam/junk. Doing this to a large number of email addresses can cause a serious issue.
- Contact Preference - The email address you are messaging can decide they no longer wish to receive your message and flag them as spam manually. It's also possible that the contact has settings on their end so that they have to white-list domains or email addresses in order to accept the message. Otherwise, it will go to their spam/junk folder.
- Having multiple records can cause an error that negates any changes being made to the record. This is why it's important for you to confirm the current record. If, for example, you have the record v=spf1 a mx ptr include:client_spf.outlook.com ~all and instead of adding include:client_spf.setforth.com to the existing record, you instead add the additional record v=spf1 a mx ptr include:client_spf.outlook.com include:client_spf.setforth.com, this will prevent both records from functioning properly and other servers to act as if there is no record in existence.
IMPORTANT: Do not confuse SPF records with other types of TXT records. It's possible for other TXT records to exist, but anytime you see a record that starts with v=spf1 a mx ptr... you want to make sure there is only one of these per subdomain in your DNS records. There are other formats that can exist at the same time as TXT records, but you only want one in the SPF format as described here.
Intervention by Forth
Article Version History:
|0.1||08/23/2022||Add document header; updated title to better reflect the topic.|
|0.2||03/13/2023||Added version control footer; updated company and software references to Forth.|
|0.3||05/03/2024||Updated Content Tag for better search capability.|