If you haven't watched the archived version of the Email Metrics and Bounce Management webinar, I strongly urge you to do that now.
And then try to understand your email metrics and deliverability:
Ask a lot of questions about how your company or ESP is calculating e-mail metrics. If the method doesn’t work for you, change it. Not asking such questions can prevent you from making good choices for your email marketing program and result in lost revenue.
Talk to your ESP or ISP about bounce metrics. An EEC study found that only a third of mailers have good visibility into why their messages are bouncing, while another third have poor visibility—they only know what’s been mailed and the total number of bounces overall. This isn’t surprising because 25% of all ESPs don’t break out hard versus soft bounces. Make sure you know where your provider stands, and ask for better statistics if you’re not seeing the entire picture.
Assume discrepancies exist. One company may define hard bounces as messages that have been blocked as spam and another may count only those messages that have bad email addresses.
Become an advocate for change. The EEC has in the past called for a nonpartisan agreement on metrics. The more companies that call for this change the better.