What is DKIM and why do I need it?

Domain Keys Identified Mail, commonly referred to as DKIM, is an email authentication method that is used to reduce the risk of an unauthorised source sending emails on behalf of the domain owner by giving emails a digital signature. This helps to reduce fraudulent spam and scam threats by sending unauthorised emails into spam folders or not even delivering them in the first place.

Obviously, this is really important for businesses as fraudulent emails could be used to scam your customers, which would reflect badly on your business. However, if the DKIM is not set up for your email delivery systems, it could mean that your emails are likely to not be successfully delivered. Therefore, it's essential to set up your DKIM correctly for any authorised third party email senders, i.e. your email marketing CRM.

In this lesson, I'll walk you through how to set up your DKIM correctly for your CRM or email delivery system. However, as there are hundreds, if not thousands, of different CRMs out there, I'm going to be using Keap in this example, but the set up will be very similar for most other CRMs.

Step 1

Before we can create the DKIM record in our domain hosting, we need to find the text values that we'll be inputting into the DNS record.

To do this, we first need to head over to your email delivery system or CRM and find the email domain settings, or something similar.

In Keap, we can find this by heading to Settings > Clicking 'Domains' 

We then need to connect the domain that we want to send emails from and continue through the set up until we can see two codes similar to this:

When you find these 2 text values, copy them and keep them somewhere you can access them in a minute.

Step 2

Next, we need to manage the DNS records in our domain hosting. To find out how to locate the DNS records, you can read our lesson on 'Managing DNS'

Step 3

We now need to create a new Cname record.

First, select 'Manage DNS'.

Next hit 'Add' or 'Create New'.
*Depending on which domain hosting you use, you may need to scroll to the Cname record section and hit 'Add' from there instead*

Once you've selected 'Add' to create a new DNS record, you should see 3-4 options that we need to fill.

1) Select the type to Cname

2) Enter the long random code of text and numbers we found in step 1 into the 'name' or 'host' field. It should look something like this:

3) Enter the other text we got from step 1 into the value field. It should look something like this:

4) Set the TTL to either default, 3600 seconds, 1 hours, 30 minutes. If you have none of these, set it to the shortest time span.

5) Click 'Add record'.

Step 4

It may take up to 48 hours for this to work, but it usually starts working within an hour.

Once it's working, you may see a green verified tick or something similar in your CRM or Email Delivery System.