Selling Digital goods and Spam folder misery

I sell passwords and login names for $25 USA dollars, to do-it-yourself boat builders.
I’ve been doing this for a decade now.

Buyer clicks a PayPal paynow button. PayPal’s IPN service invokes a PHP script on my server that enters that new customer in a schema, creates a login name and password and then sends two emails, one to the buyer and a copy to me. The email the buyer receives contains a “confirm” link that (if clicked) grants access to an otherwise hidden portion of my website, that contains written instructions, images and downloadable CAD files.

So far so good. But in recent months more and more trouble happens because half of my server-generated email ends up in the buyer’s Spam Folder. My signup forms warn the user about this, with bold red lettering. But they miss it anyway. Then they get mad and file a PayPal grievance, accusing me of being a “rip off,” without ever contacting me. I might throw in the towel.

But I would like help too. Are there any strategies for formatting my email, that will keep it out of the buyer’s Spam Folder?

(I would like to find an torture spammers. I’d start by lopping fingers for first offense. Other appendages there after.)

Take a look at this article and see if it helps:

There are more… Google the term avoid spam folder.

I like #5, I have never even thought of those techniques. Kind of smart. Not saying I’ll do it…

Another option is to use Paypal’s digital goods feature.

I use an implementation called Firesage Checkout (, which provides an in-context payment process, so the customer never leaves your site to complete the payment. You have the option to provide a download link to digital goods immediately after payment, or in your case you may want to provide the customer with a dynamically generated password or link on the page so they can access the hidden portions of your site.

You can still send the email, but you won’t be as dependent on it getting through spam filters with a method like this.

Good luck selling!

Thank you! (all other responses too). I didn’t know about the digital goods feature. That I’m going to look into. For sure.

If someone could please invent the “finger paralysis” phone app for spammers they should be awarded an honorary satin Barcalounger in the digital hall of fame.