The Short Version (For Advanced Administrators):
To include the ClickDimensions mail servers in your SPF record, simply add this include statement to your SPF record at your domain’s DNS host:
TIP: Check to make sure your SPF record is valid by using a tool like Kitterman.com.
What Happens If I Don’t Set up an SPF record?
If you do not set up an SPF record, and try to send a ClickDimensions email to yourself or your colleagues, there is a chance you will not receive it. This is because your mail server may see that the “From” address is firstname.lastname@example.org, but it will recognize that the email originated from outside of your network. Some mail servers will reject emails that originate outside of your network, but have a “From” address that looks like it is supposed to be from your own email. (Not all mail servers check SPFs, but it is a good practice to prevent fake or “phishing” emails.)
The Details (For Everyone Else):
Setting up an SPF record for ClickDimensions Customers
SPF, or Sender Policy Framework, is a standard framework that some mail services use to verify the validity of the source of an email. SPF records reside on the DNS server for the domain, and, when a recipient email server receives an email, it may request the SPF record for the sender’s domain to make sure that the server sending the message has permission to do so. For example, if an email is sent from email@example.com through ClickDimensions, the recipient’s mail server might ask if ClickDimensions is authorized to send mail on behalf of the mycompany.com domain. If the SPF record for mycompany.com includes a reference to ClickDimensions, it will pass this test.
Note: Not all domains have SPF records. If you do not have an SPF record, it is not necessary to add one, though it is a good practice to have an SPF record that specifies all of the mail servers that are permitted to send mail for your domain. You should read more about SPF and make sure you understand the implications of adding or modifying your SPF record prior to making any changes. More information is available here.
You’ll want to create an SPF record for the domain(s) that appears in the email addresses you will use as the “Sender” for marketing email. For example, if your email address is firstname.lastname@example.org, you will modify the SPF record with the domain registrar or DNS provider where mycompany.com’s DNS is hosted.
You may already have an SPF record for sending email from your company’s primary mail provider through your domain. If so, it may look like this:
"v=spf1 include:myemailprovider.com ~all"
This is a simple text entry stored with your domain’s DNS that tells anybody who inquires that if an email originates from myemailprovider.com it is okay to accept it. The ~all portion of the SPF says that any other source is questionable and will send a “soft fail” response.
Including ClickDimensions in your SPF record
To modify your SPF record to permit mail that is sent through the ClickDimensions service, you can add an “include” statement that shows that our servers are permitted to send email from your domain: “include:customers.clickdimensions.com”
Your SPF record might then look like this:
"v=spf1 include:myemailprovider.com include:customers.clickdimensions.com ~all"
This SPF record will tell servers that it is okay to accept mail whether it originates from your primary email provider’s domain or from the ClickDimensions mail service.
NOTE: Any changes to your SPF record may take time to propagate through the DNS system. The amount of time is dependent on your DNS provider and domain settings and can take as long as 48 hours to propagate around the internet.