Double Opt-In

Introduction

This document will guide you through the basics of setting up double opt-in functionality for your users. A double opt-in is a good practice to follow in order to improve your deliverability and/or comply with local laws like CASL in Canada.

Ingredients

  • A double_optin attribute to track each person’s status
  • A data-driven segment, either for people without the double_optin attribute or for new users depending on your strategy
  • A segment-triggered campaign where we’ll send an email with a link people can click to opt in
  • Another data-driven segment for people who have clicked the opt-in link link

Method

Create a segment to trigger the campaign

First and foremost, we’ll need an attribute for each person that tracks whether or not they’ve been through the double-opt in process, and what they’ve chosen. Let’s call this attribute double_optin.

Then, we’ll need a data-driven segmentA group of people who match a series of conditions. People enter and exit the segment automatically when they match or stop matching conditions. to trigger the double opt-in campaign. For this example, we’ll use a condition of “double_optin does not exist”. You can use a different segment if you want—like a data-driven segment for new users.

A data-driven segment with the condition attribute double_optin does not exist
A data-driven segment with the condition attribute double_optin does not exist

Start creating your double opt-in campaign

Create a segment-triggered campaign using the segment you created in the previous step.

The first step of the campaign creation where we define the condition as people matching conditions and the condition being that they're in the segment we just created
The first step of the campaign creation where we define the condition as people matching conditions and the condition being that they're in the segment we just created

Your first workflow action will send an email with a link your audience can click to confirm that they want to opt-in.

The workflow at this stage, with an email action as the first workflow action
The workflow at this stage, with an email action as the first workflow action

 Make sure the double opt-in URL is unique

You can use any URL for the link, as we’ll track the clicks on a link matching a specific URL. Make sure it’s a unique URL either by creating a dedicated page to link to, or by adding a URL variable such as ?double_optin=true to the URL.

Now that we have the email created, we’ll need a second data-driven segment for people that clicked the opt-in link. Create your new segment before you finish setting up your campaign.

Our second data-driven segment where we define the condition of the email we just created having been clicked
Our second data-driven segment where we define the condition of the email we just created having been clicked

Finish creating your double opt-in campaign

Now that we have that second segment, we can complete the setup of our campaign.

First, we’ll add a Wait Until workflow action and use the segment we just created as the condition that we want to wait for. We’ll also add a maximum wait time of 1 week before moving to the next action. This lets us consider people who haven’t clicked within 7 days of receiving the email as not opted-in.

Setting up our Wait Until action with the second segment we just created as the condition, and a maximum wait time
Setting up our Wait Until action with the second segment we just created as the condition, and a maximum wait time

Then, we’ll add a True/False Branch using the same segment as the condition we want to evaluate. That way, we’ll be able to perform different actions if the user going through the campaign clicks the double opt-in link in the email or not.

Setting up our True/False Branch with the same segment
Setting up our True/False Branch with the same segment

Last, but not least, we’ll add a Create or Update Person action in each branch to update the double_optin attribute.

Our branches with a Create or Update Person workflow actions in each branch
Our branches with a Create or Update Person workflow actions in each branch

Overview of the final result

Your campaign should look like this! When you’re done, activate your campaign to begin processing double opt-ins.

An overview of the whole campaign, from trigger to exit, with our email, wait until, branch, and create or update person actions
An overview of the whole campaign, from trigger to exit, with our email, wait until, branch, and create or update person actions
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