Is Cold Emailing Illegal?


Within the dynamic world of corporate marketing, cold emailing remains a potent yet discreet tactic. However, two critical questions arise as professionals look to broaden their networks and establish significant connections. These include “Is cold emailing considered unlawful?” and “What is the ideal daily quantity of cold emails per domain?”

This article explores the legal intricacies of cold emailing while balancing the important outreach quantity against the quality ratio.

Understanding Anti-Spam Laws

Gaining an understanding of the fundamentals of anti-spam laws is essential to properly navigating these legal grounds. The laws surrounding cold emails are complex and differ by nation. The CAN-SPAM Act in the US forbids misleading tactics and requires explicit opt-out options and truthful headers. Although lawful, careful adherence is needed. The GDPR in the EU requires express consent for marketing emails and includes provisions for opting out. In general, companies that use cold emailing must follow local legislation.

Compliance Guidelines for Cold Emailing

What separates a valid cold email address from an illicit one? Complying is what matters most. The following guidelines are subject to penalties and legal repercussions if they are broken.

  • In the US, firms must adhere to strict regulations outlined in the CAN-SPAM Act.
  • Emails must provide recipients with a clear way to opt out.
  • Emails with false or inaccurate content or deceptive subject lines are not permitted.
  • The legal position of cold emails in the US is dependent on careful observance.

How Many Cold Emails per Day per domain?

To prevent spam filter penalties, begin sending 10–20 cold emails per day to newly opened inboxes. Established inboxes, such as Gmail (500 emails/day, 2000 for Google Workspace) or Microsoft (up to 10,000 recipients/day), offer increased limits tied to plans and performance. For outreach to be successful, compliance is necessary.

Avoiding Spam Filters and Domain Reputation Damage

The consequences of going over your daily email restriction go beyond short-term setbacks and affect the long-term viability of your domain. Maintaining an excessive amount of control over limits can damage the reputation of your domain, which will lower recipient trust and deliverability. To write successful cold emails, one must effectively steer clear of these errors.

Strategies for Finding the Sweet Spot

Determining the optimal daily quantity of cold emails for each domain requires strategic thinking. Campaign objectives, industry norms, and the reactions of your target audience should all be considered. You can enhance the probability of significant interaction while adhering to domain restrictions by using cold emailing tools like the Lemlist cold email app.


Whether under the GDPR in the EU or the CAN-SPAM Act in the US, legal cold emailing requires compliance. For businesses to maintain moral and lawful cold emailing practices, openness, consent, and compliance must come first. Finding the ideal ratio for the quantity of cold emails is also crucial. Effective cold email marketing necessitates a dual focus on strategic quantity control and legal scrutiny. Businesses can build lasting relationships without sacrificing efficiency or legality by adhering to local standards and making the most of their outreach tactics.