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[Classic design] What should I do if my contacts were flagged?

In this article, we'll explain why your contacts can be flagged and declined, and what to do about it. Once a contact is flagged, you won't be able to send emails to them. Please follow the procedure at the end of this article to reimport you contacts properly. 

First you can watch our video on Validated and flagged contacts:

Two types of flagged contacts

A verification is performed by our system to verify a sample of your new contacts (or contacts who have never received any campaigns) and if these contacts do not present themselves as reactive contacts, our system suspends (= flags) all new contacts to whom the campaign in question has been sent. There are two types of flagged contacts :


1. Flagged status: Review in-progress

If you import a large number of new email addresses, relative to the size of your current contact list, they may be flagged for review before you may contact them via Sendinblue.

You will receive a notification offering you the option to continue with the import and contact review or to cancel and import a smaller list. 


These new contacts will only appear in your total Contacts count after you choose to continue the import. 

Once imported, flagged contacts are assigned the status Review in-progress and they will appear in gray on your contact list. 


A member of the Sendinblue Customer Care team will review these contacts promptly and email you to request more information about the list. Once contacts are reviewed, they will be able to receive an email campaign via Sendinblue. 

2. Flagged status: Declined

When new reviewed contacts receive their first campaign via Sendinblue, their engagement level is monitored. If their open and/or click rates indicate that they did not recently or directly opt-in to your emails, they are assigned the status Declined

Declined contacts may not be messaged again via Sendinblue without additional list maintenance.

If you wish to continue using some of the Declined contacts in Sendinblue, they must be Deleted Permanently and re-imported. 

❗️ Important
Please use caution and only import contacts that are 100% recently opt-in contacts. If new contact imports repeatedly result in Declined lists, your account may incur further review or be permanently invalidated. 

Searching for flagged contacts

To identify flagged contacts, go to the Contacts tab and click the blue Advanced Search & Segmentation button to reveal all search options. 

Choose Flagged contacts from the drop-down menu and choose which type of contacts you wish to search for: AllReview in-progress or Declined.


Once selected, contacts may be managed by choosing an Action or Export option. 


What to do if you have flagged contacts

While contacts have a Declined status, they may not be contacted via Sendinblue. In the below procedure, we'll explain all the steps to remove these contacts, clean your list and reimport the contacts. We also recommend to read our article on how to optimize the contact list.

1. Export the contacts of the email campaign (EMAIL Sent)

First, you'll need to export the list of contacts that you wanted to send your campaign to. The idea is to clean the list, and reimport it afterward.

  1. Go to Contacts
  2. Click Advanced Search & Segmentation on the top right of your screen
  3. Select EMAIL Sent in the first drop down
  4. Select Select a campaign in the second drop down
  5. Select your campaign in the third drop down
  6. The number of contacts will appear next the the search button
  7. Click Search
  8. In the results, tick the first checkbox to select all the contacts.
  9. Click Export > Only Once.

We'll refer to this export as EMAIL Sent in the following steps.

2. Export the contacts that have already received the email (EMAIL Delivered)

The second export is the contacts that have already received the email. It'll be useful in the following steps to exclude this list when you re-send your campaign. Indeed, you don't want your contacts to receive the campaign twice.

The procedure will be the same as above, but in step 3 you need to select EMAIL Delivered instead.  

We'll refer to this export as EMAIL delivered in the following steps.


3. Clean your contact list with Emailable (formerly Blaze verify)

Now you have to clean up your list because the root of the problem is the engagement of your contacts. We invite you to use Emailable which will bring you clean, ready-to-use lists.
You can use this link and clean the two files EMAIL Sent and EMAIL Delivered you just extracted in step 1 and 2:

4. Look for flagged contacts on Sendinblue and delete them

Please refer to the above section Searching for flagged contacts. You don't really have a choice here to delete these contacts, flagged contacts have to be deleted and imported again in Sendinblue.

To delete the contacts, select all the contacts by ticking the first checkbox and click Action > Delete permanently.


5. Reimport the two verified lists

In step 1 and 2 you exported 2 files:

  • 1 with the list of all the contacts of your campaign (EMAIL Sent)
  • 1 with the list of the contacts that already received the email campaign (EMAIL Delivered)

It's now time to reimport these lists. The first one has been verified and cleaned by Emailable, and the other one will be excluded in next step so that you don't re-send the campaign to the contacts that have already received your newsletter.

In this step, make sure to reimport the verified list by Emailable in two separate list. Indeed, one of the list will be excluded in the following step, so it needs to be a separate import.

6. Exclude the second list when you send your campaign again

To send your campaign again, duplicate your suspended campaign to create an exact copy. To duplicate your campaign go to Campaigns > Email and on your campaign click More > Duplicate.

Then, in the Recipients step, you should:

  1. select the first list (contacts in the list EMAIL Sent)
  2. and exclude the second list (contacts in the list EMAIL Delivered). 

Indeed, some of your subscribers may have already received your email (people in the EMAIL Delivered list), hence you don't want to send the campaign twice to them. This is why you will need to exclude the contact list when you try to send the campaign again. 


You can now reschedule your second email campaign.

🤔 Have a question?

If you have a question, feel free to contact our support team by creating a ticket from your account. If you don't have an account yet, you can contact us here.