We’ve talked about BIMI a few times, here at Site Impact; about the potential impact that it can have for brands interested in reassuring their prospects and current customers alike that an email is truly from the brand, as well as the slow but steady rate of adoption that BIMI has had. While BIMI stands to really help improve email security and put a dent in phishing scams (at least for a while), the only way that it can really take off is for email platforms as well as brands to adopt the standard. Luckily, Google just announced that it will be coming fully onboard with BIMI for its Gmail platform, which will doubtless encourage many more brands to adopt the security standard.
BIMI (Brand Indicators for Message Identification) is a relatively new protocol process that allows brands to show their logos in the sender field (therefore in the subject line) of emails, and in emails more broadly. Particularly for those brands that handle sensitive information, this was a major coup: an ability to more securely identify the brand for recipients so that they could be certain that an email truly came from a business rather than a scammer has been in demand for a while. While BIMI was the answer to a big ask, it’s struggled to gain traction in the way that many other protocols and developments have managed to do within email marketing, for two simple reasons: not all of the email platforms were fully onboard (Yahoo was an early adopter, but others have lagged), and the process for DMARC authentication, required to participate in BIMI, is somewhat tedious. While it’s not exactly difficult to do, it does take a certain amount of time and effort, and like so many things, that’s so far slowed down adoption. But with Gmail all-in on BIMI, this could turn the corner.
It’s not entirely accurate to say that Google wasn’t onboard before; Gmail has had some limited BIMI functionality, since Gmail does recognize DMARC certification. However, as a platform-wide option, for any brand that goes through the process to be properly authenticated and to maintain the security standards, it hasn’t been the case. Now that Gmail is more fully committed to participating, BIMI will be accessible for two of the three major email platforms used in America, and it’s a fair bet that the third--Microsoft--will fall in line soon enough. With Gmail fully onboard with BIMI, consumers will become more accustomed to brands being identified in their inboxes without having to check and double-check email addresses or do other sleuthing; while BIMI and its attendant DMARC authentication and enforcement may be tedious, it’s clear that the brands that have already gone through the process are seeing a benefit. Now that the capability has expanded, more brands will see the increased confidence and engagement, and we expect much more rapid adoption of the protocols.
BIMI is more than just a cool little trick to increase brand recognition; for brands that rely on secure information transfer (especially ecommerce sites, banks, etc) it gives a boost of confidence that the information is coming from a trusted source. Consumers have already responded positively to BIMI where it’s implemented, and now that Gmail is completely onboard with pushing the standard for its platform, we fully expect people to pick it up more rapidly and for the small amount of legwork required by brands to make it happen to no longer be as much of a hurdle. Contact Site Impact to hear how we help you keep your prospects’ confidence throughout all campaigns.