If you are about to buy an email list thinking that it will shortcut your path to riches, think again.

Email marketing has been and will continue to be the best way to make money online, and while buying a list of 40,000 to 50,000 email addresses may seem like a slam dunk, in reality, it’s one of the quickest and worst ways to waste money.

Why Buying Email Lists is a Bad Idea

For starters, these are people who have no interest in your business. At best they match one of the criteria that you were looking for, but at worst, half of the email addresses that you’ll purchase will either be defunct or completely irrelevant to your website.

Blasting an email to a list you bought from someone else is a fantastic way to get flagged and shut down for spam.

Need a couple more reasons not to buy a list? Here are a few:

1. You’re Not the Only One With Those E-mail Addresses

Though the seller may claim that you were the sole owner of that block of email addresses, the reality is they have most likely sold the same email lists to 15 other people that same day.

What does that mean for your business?

It means that the people you’re trying to sell to will already be inundated with offers exactly like yours, many of whom have already hit the spam button and have tuned you out. Moreover, some may even have filters to block emails like yours from reaching them in the first place. Even the best email marketing software can’t counter these blocks, which just means you’re wasting money!

2. No One Will Open Your Emails

Almost every email service on the planet charges different prices for increasing amounts of subscribers. The way in which those costs are offset is that, in theory, the more your list grows, the more that your sales will grow as well.

That won’t happen with an email list that you bought from someone else.

The average open rate across all industries is between 20-25%. Click through rate is between 8 to 9%, and actual purchase rate will be lower than that. If your list is legitimate, your revenue will most likely offset any costs associated with your email service several times over.

The open rates for an email list that you buy from a third party are 1/3 or 1/4 of industry standards, which means your purchase rate will also be much, much lower.

No one reads your emails, which means no one buys anything from you.

3. Your Business and Your Reputation Could be Destroyed.

Despite the fact that no digital marketing expert recommends buying an email list, they’re also walls in place that prevent those types of practices. The CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 prohibits unsolicited bulk emails, which is precisely what happens when you purchase a list from a third party.

Even if you somehow manage to stay out of legal trouble, you could also be looking at a major financial battle to prove your innocence. Either way, there’s no scenario in which your business looks good after an experience like that.

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