Annoyed, I unsubscribed from Groupon’s emails yesterday… not that I ever signed up for them in the first place. I took a deal on a breakfast sandwich one fateful day and Groupon thought that was an invitation to send me an daily email with New York City deals. Since that worked out so well for them, they doubled it to two emails on several days – god forbid I lose out on their Grouponicus deals. Groupon is hardly the only offending “app” out there. It seems like every couple of days Loopt is emailing me to announce some breakthrough new feature. It seems like you install an app on your iPhone, sign up for an account and it’s open season on your inbox. I’m actually more forgiving than most. I waited three months before clicking on unsubscribe. And despite the bad etiquette, I was looking for a way to limit the emails – maybe a weekly or monthly email instead of the daily bombardment. Nope – it was an all or nothing proposition, and given the options it was an easy choice. Well, that got me curious. I started scanning my inbox for email subscriptions to see what kind of options were available in the footers of these emails. Most provided an unsubscribe link, and I took many of them up on the offer (it’s been a while since I cleared these out). A much smaller group of emails offered links to “subscription settings” or “adjust your message settings”. I didn’t cancel any of these though I did tweak a few to get emails less frequently. As a result, I’ll probably stick with them for the long haul. LinkedIn provided the most options – allowing me to adjust my preferences and opt for an email for each new discussion. The only emails I found that didn’t provide options in the footer were those from AT&T. I know that I can manage these preferences from an online account but it would be nice if they provided a link or made mention of the fact. An unsubscribe option is essential in email marketing and updates from web applications. It would be helpful if more organizations provided an option for more or fewer emails to go along with it. Unsubscribe / Fewer Emails / More Frequent Emails might be a good set of options, or More / Less / No More might be a more succinct way of putting it. I’m certain that the companies behind these emails would end up losing far fewer users if they made it easier to manage what lands in your inbox.

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