Question: I’ve got a real problem over here. I am currently using MailChimp as my mailing list provider and for about two years, everything has been fine. I think I’ve managed to collect around 800 email addresses from people who are apparently interested in what I write on my blog. By the way, I have no idea if this list has helped me with my site traffic at all, but I’ll save that discussion for another post.
Anyway, I’ve recently noticed that some strange looking email addresses have been popping up in my mailing list. I receive a notification in my GMail account every time someone new signs up and about a week ago, it started. It’s been nothing but .ru addresses and weird looking domains like b.wp-viralclick.com. It’s awful because every time I get one of these signups, I have to log into my MailChimp account and delete it. This entire process is getting rather old.
I’m wondering if anyone else has had this experience. Is this something new or have fake spam email list signups always been around? Also, is there any way to stop this? I’ve already activated the double opt-in feature that MailChimp offers as well as their re-captcha feature. The re-captcha is only available for their pop-up signup form though and I’ve got three different types. These measures have slowed the signups slightly, but they’re still coming in. Please help me.
Answer: The same thing is actually happening to me right now with my blog. I use MailChimp too and I’m not sure if this is an issue with just them or with every post email service. Starting a few weeks ago, I’ve been getting about five Russian signups per day. I’m at the point where I think I may remove the entire email feature and go without. I’m not even sure if emailing my posts out does anything for me. I mean, I write something and people read the entire post in their email. Who cares? How does that even help me? I’ve read a few articles where people say that email lists are the most important thing to have, but I don’t know why. All I’m doing is writing blog posts that people can find through search if they’re interested in them. I never liked the idea of emailing what I write out to people.
I’m looking into FeedBurner right now. If you have experience with them, please let me know. I get the feeling that FeedBurner is really old and is about to be shut down, but I’ll give it a shot anyway. It can’t be any worse than these fake MailChimp signups. It’s driving me nuts.