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8 Powerful Tips to Optimize Your Infusionsoft Account for Greater Performance

by Joseph Manna

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Practically every kind of software and hardware available today has ways to optimize, fine-tune and tweak it to yield higher performance. Infusionsoft is not any different. Our Systems team already does most of that, but we want to offer you some actionable tips that you can use to help you with maximizing the performance of your Infusionsoft account.

I’m an eternal optimizer. If it can be modified, I love to adjust, test and tweak it. Whether it’s cars, Androids, (Jailbroken) iPhones or computers. If there’s a switch, I’ll toggle it and observe the results. One thing I learned over all these years is that with a significant change or modification, there’s an inherent risk, so it’s always a good idea to back up and save your data before you apply the changes. I know, I know, we don’t read manuals and we like to live life on the edge; just trust me on this one.

Do you need to do all these optimizations? No, but if you’ve run into situations where you’re running actions on contacts and it appears to be sluggish, or if you’ve sent a broadcast and it’s not sending around 200 emails per second, it would be a good idea to optimize your Infusionsoft application. I recommend doing these if your account is older than a couple years. Let’s get started!

Warning: Proceed with caution before deleting or removing data from your Infusionsoft account. If you would like professional assistance in performing any of these tasks, Infusionsoft Certified Consultants are qualified to carry out these suggestions for you.

1. Trim the fat from your contact list.

The goal here is to remove the excess contacts that haven’t had any activity in a while. One method that worked well for me is to take look into your recent broadcasts over the past three months and search for people who did not open or click your email messages and tag those contacts separately. Then do a final search for those who are in all those tags. From there, you can decide to do a final export, and then delete them to shed the dead weight from your list. You can also find unresponsive contacts on your list by using the “Click Through Percentage Search” found in Marketing Reports. You can even search for a threshold of click-through rates (e.g., 0-20% CTR) by specific Tag.

[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]

Delete contacts from Infusionsoft

2. Remove old and unnecessary Tags.

Word from our Systems team indicates that Contact Records containing a lot of Tags tend to slow down database performance on larger accounts. There are two ways to address this. The first is to actually remove redundant and unnecessary tags from contacts. The second is to actually remove the tags from your Infusionsoft account. My understanding is that you can still keep these tags, but removing them from the Contact Records is the most beneficial.

[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]
[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]

Delete Tags from your Infusionsoft account
Remove a tag from the Contact Record

3. Remove obsolete Custom Fields.

Every Infusionsoft account is provided 100 custom fields for their unlimited use. For our users who leverage the Infusionsoft API frequently, this will yield a massive performance gain, but for most others, it won’t. Consider removing obsolete Custom Fields that you no longer use for day to day sales and marketing activities. As always; backup first, because once it’s gone, it’s gone forever. An alternative to Custom Fields is to use Infusionsoft’s native fields and you can re-label and re-purpose them.

[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]

Remove Custom Fields from Infusionsoft

4. Use the latest Mozilla Firefox browser.

At this time, Mozilla Firefox is the preferred browser that is most compatible with Infusionsoft. Every major release of Firefox aims to improve memory management, Javascript rendering performance and overall reliability. We recommend that you use the latest version of Firefox when using Infusionsoft. Additionally, try to minimize any unnecessary toolbars or add-ons. These may interfere with the rendering of pages and may cause problems later.

Just a note on Google Chrome because I know it’ll come up in this discussion about performance. We know Chrome is an amazing web browser and offers superior Javascript performance, but right now, the advanced features of our software like the drag-and-drop ‘Builders’ are incompatible with it. As we innovate and constantly improve, there may be a time when we are compatible with Chrome.

Download Mozilla Firefox

5. Customize your User Home Dashboard so it’s useful.

Are you not interacting with your User Home Dashboard like you did before? Maybe it’s time for some new widgets. I recommend using the “Box ‘o Stats” widget to provide immediate KPIs for your business. You’ll need to first create saved searches and reports for what you need. Once you do it, you never have to do it again. This widget in particular is specifically designed to be light on our database resources, so you can click the numbers to be taken to the results if you need them.

[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]

Customize your User Home Dashboard

6. Adjust your Follow-Up Sequence Schedule to your preferred contact periods.

Do you send emails at 1AM? How about at 4AM? Probably not. If you do, that’s fine, but many of our users want to be prescriptive with the times that they run legacy Follow-Up Sequences. Keep in mind that time times are hard-coded to be Eastern Standard Time (EST). It’s a good idea to setup a “blackout period” where automated activities don’t run. Events from Follow-Up Sequences will be queued up and executed at the next available hour. You can always send Scheduled Broadcasts any time you want because those override the Follow-Up Sequence Schedule.

Just so you know, everything within the Campaign Builder is completely exempt from the Follow-Up Sequence Schedule; you would want to configure timers for more granular control over the timing of sequences developed within it.

[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]

Adjust your Follow-Up Sequence Schedule

7. Send an email confirmation to your contacts to re-gain their permission.

If you haven’t gained permission from your contacts to email them in the past six months, it’s a very smart and calculated decision to ask them to confirm their interest in receiving updates from you. (I previously went into detail about this when we moved over our blog’s subscribers from FeedBurner – it’s a good read.) Permission typically expires about nine months after people initially opt-in to your email marketing. We’ve seen that users who adopt a confirmed email strategy typically have exponentially fewer spam complaints, higher open rates and ultimately, higher click-through rates on their marketing messages. If you want to find all the contacts with unconfirmed email addresses (formerly, single opt-in), you can review the “Email Status Search” found in Marketing Reports. This is a great method to put those individuals into an email confirmation campaign.

[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]

Email Confirmation Sequence in the Campaign Builder

8. De-duplicate and merge contacts.

Last and certainly not least, is the occasional need to de-duplicate (or de-dupe) contacts in your database. Why would you have duplicate records? If you imported a list of people and they had a different email address, maybe you specifically permitted duplicates in a Web Form, or simply you’ve always had duplicates when you initially configured your Infusionsoft account. Infusionsoft tries to be smart about not sending emails to people twice, which is why you may observe “skips” on whenever you send an email broadcast. Merging these records will allow you to have complete Contact Records with a high degree of accuracy for future sales and marketing activities. In addition, you will have better reporting capabilities since duplicates won’t be padding your results one way or the other.

[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]
[Read more about this on the Infusionsoft Help Center]

Dupe-check and Merge Contact Records in Infusionsoft

After making these optimizations, you’ll find that your Infusionsoft account is a bit speedier and the analytics and reporting may become much more accurate when you need to measure your sales and marketing activities. Performance gains or improved reporting capabilities – it’s a win-win if you get this done.

If your account has more than 500,000 contacts, these optimizations will help greatly, but won’t necessarily cure all the performance ills you might run into. We’re continually working on speeding up our backend so we’re blazing fast no matter how much your business grows. If you ever need some advanced help, just ask, we’ll work with you and can do some pretty complex tasks on our backend.

As I mentioned before – I can’t stress this enough – please make a backup of your data before making these changes to your account. And with that data, please store it securely so no one else can access it.  Nothing would upset you more than if you made a mistake along the way and had to pay us to do an advanced data restore. Of course, if you get stuck, please contact us and we’ll be happy to help.

There are likely more optimizations, but these are top ones that come to mind that will help most Infusionsoft users. Do you have any performance tips or tricks that you’d like to share? Go ahead and let us know in the comments below.

Image credit: Thorbard, modified

  • Jonathan Thompson

    Hello – I think I am a heavy InfusionSoft user and I do almost all of these things. They were great suggestions. I used to check for duplicates and merge records based on email only once a week. I do have one question, having a data-centric view on most of what I do, I cannot bring myself to delete tags. Can you please elaborate. Like, what happens, the tags are gone, and you remember it would be useful if you could connect with X. Is there not much value there? I guess I would like a discussion on deleting tags.

    • http://about.me/josephmanna Joseph Manna

      Thank you for bringing this up. I was a bit worried that the tip about removing tags was vague. I’ll explain.

      Tags are incredibly powerful to create large segments and even micro-segments of your list. However, there comes a point when having too many tags begins to work against you as a marketer where they are redundant in nature.

      Examples of redundant tags would be like:
      - Clicked promo 12-1-2012
      - Clicked promo 11-8-2012
      - Clicked promo 10-18-2012
      - Clicked promo 10-5-2012

      … You could consolidate these into “Clicked promo Q4-2012″

      Now, this isn’t to say that tags are bad by any means. They are intended for creating limitless segments of your list. If you feel uncomfortable deleting or consolidating tags, then feel at ease to continue with all the tags you want.

      Now, if a Contact Record has HUNDREDS of tags, that’s the spirit of the suggestion in the post. One record with hundreds of tags each could cause performance issues as well as being challenging to make actionable, accurate and meaningful marketing decisions later.

      I hope this helps clear things up for you, Jonathan. Again, be assured that using multiple, dozens or even a hundred tags on a Contact Record is totally fine and even recommended in most cases.

      • Jonathan Thompson

        Thank you kind sir. What if you applied similar mechanisms behind the solution to show tags CRM > Settings > Tags, calculate the number to reduce server load. What if there was a “put away in the basement” option for tags? For example, map tag data to a backup server farm when the option is clicked for all of your users. Then server load is for current/useful tags. If needed, you can “active” tag again. Your thoughts?

        • http://about.me/josephmanna Joseph Manna

          Bingo. Welcome to one of the topics that our Architecture team discusses. We’ll get there soon. This is a great idea and we’ll let our product management team know so they can consider it in future product innovations. :-)

  • Wardee

    Great tips! I am interested in hearing your recommendations on backup best-practices. Do you recommend any daily, weekly, monthly backup tasks?

    • Jonathan Thompson

      I am curious on backup practices as well.

    • http://about.me/josephmanna Joseph Manna

      No need to worry about backing up unless you’re making major changes. We actually store three copies on our backend of everything. However to actually restore advanced data, it will take a little while plus an additional cost.

      Exporting all contacts with all custom fields should suffice for making Contact Record changes. It’s just insurance in the event of a mistake. If you’re not sure, give us a shout and we’ll be happy to help. :-)

      • Wardee

        Thanks. Good to know! :)

  • karen rands

    My contacts keep telling me that they find my emails in their spam folder. My spam score automatically adds 1.1 attributed to because of the infusionsoft.com domain being listed in the URIBL greylist. I sent a test message to myself to my gmail account and found it in my spam folder on gmail.
    We pay WAY TOO MUCH MONEY For infusonsoft as a strategic tool for email marketing to have our efforts thwarted because you send everything through a tainted domain (Karen Rands via infusionmail.com) rather than my own email domain – karen@launchfn.com.
    You need to FIX this. It is should have the HIGHEST priority. I reported this months ago and nothing has changed. You spend a ton of money adding other bells and whistles for new campaign build features which don’t amount of hill of beans if the email can’t get through the filter because of your practice of sending via infusionsoftmail.com If you using your domain HELPED to get through filters that would be one thing, but to have inhibit getting through filters is unacceptable.

    • http://about.me/josephmanna Joseph Manna

      Hi, Karen.

      Sorry to hear that you feel this way. We’ll have our account management team get in touch with you so we can help fix things up and make sure you’re getting maximum value for what you spend on Infusionsoft.

      Regarding the URIBL greylist, realize that the real-world impact is minimal for our users. Our infrastructure is designed to ensure all emails are sent with the proper reputation and security that is needed for optimal delivery. Also, realize that 1.1 is still low — most SpamAssassin-based email servers filter mail starting at 3.5 points or above. Google and other mainstream ISPs do not use SpamAssassin. We have an in-depth help article that explains this further: http://ug.infusionsoft.com/article/AA-01202/0/How-do-links-on-the-URIBL-Greylist-affect-email-delivery.html

      When you send a mail from Infusionsoft it is sent from your from address. We also append a “Sender Header” which is used for bounce/complaint recovery (mailer@infusionsoft.com, bounce@infusionsoft.com respectively). This is only displayed to Outlook clients and is factually correct, “Infusionsoft is sending this message on behalf of Karen.”

      I hope this helps. We’ll have your account manager reach out to you to address any additional concerns you may have. Thanks!

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