What Verizon’s Emails Moving to AOL Mean for Your Program

Posted by Christine Borgia 

[Update: The article originally stated all Verizon email accounts would be migrated by April 28. This is actually a phased rollout. The process has started, and we do not know yet when it will be complete. All references to April 28 in the below article have been modified.]

Verizon acquired AOL in June of 2015. Since then, Verizon has gradually migrated their email accounts (ending in @verizon.net) over to AOL, requiring Verizon customers in some regions to use mail.aol.com as their email portal. Verizon has now announced that they are getting out of the email business entirely and will be migrating or closing all @verizon.net email accounts in the coming weeks or months.

Any Verizon customers wishing to keep their @verizon.net email address will need to migrate the @verizon.net account to AOL. These customers will keep the @verizon.net address as their AOL login. Verizon customers will receive an individualized email with their migration date, and those who do not request migration to AOL by their migration date will have their email accounts closed.

Recommendations for Email Marketers
Below are a few recommendations for marketers to reduce the impact of this change on your ability to reach your customers.

  • Ensure bounces are being properly handled. Customers who do not migrate will lose their @verizon.net email address. Marketers should expect higher volumes of bounces from customers who choose not to migrate.
  • Try to identify a new email address for @verizon.net customers. Consider collecting a secondary verification method (i.e. secondary email address, mobile number, security question(s), etc.). from your customers.
  • Prepare an in-web / in-app prompt if the Verizon (or any) address bounces, notifying the subscriber that the address doesn’t appear to be valid and asking the subscriber to update the address on file.
  • If available, leverage your list hygiene provider to test Verizon addresses for bounces before deploying emails.
  • Read the help pages provided by AOL and Verizon. Both AOL and Verizon have put together help pages to support their customers through this transition. These pages will help answer most questions.

Deliverability to @verizon.net Addresses
While this current migration is moving @verizon.net addresses to AOL, Verizon once partnered with Yahoo!, allowing their customers to use Yahoo! Mail as their email portal. These Verizon customers will continue to use Yahoo as their email portal moving forward. This means that upon completion of the Verizon email shutdown, customers with active @verizon.net addresses will either be using Yahoo! Mail or AOL Mail as their email provider. Deliverability to @verizon.net addresses will be impacted by which email provider the customer is using. Email marketers will not be able to identify which email portal a @verizon.net customer is using, unless they have access to the email header. If marketers have a deliverability issue at either provider, it will impact a portion of their @verizon.net email.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to discuss with your Technical Account Manager.

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About Christine Borgia

As Senior Director of Data Support, Christine ensures that Return Path's employees, customers, and consumers are able to get the answers they need about our data and data sources. Prior to joining Return Path, Christine spent seven years fighting spam for AOL where she led a team of content filtering and IP reputation experts. Connect with her on Twitter @christineborgia or at linkedin.com/in/christineborgia.

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