A Tale of Two Unsubscribe Experiences

I have recently been on an in box hygiene mission. Although I am very careful about what I opt to receive, it seems that lately I just get more messages than I can manage. So, I have been actively unsubsubscribing to lists lately.

I have been very surprised by the experience is most cases. Clicking on the unsubscribe link in an email message, generally takes me to a web page that says something like this (just received from PetEdge):

Your email address has been removed from the ‘petedge_emailaddr’ mailing list.

This isn’t bad, but it is pretty sterile. Just because I am opting out of the email list doesn’t mean that I want to sever all ties. This message does nothing to determine my intent, or to continue some level of relationship with me.

An exception to my recent experiences is Petco.com. When I opted out of that list, I was presented with a series of about 6 choices to pick to let them know why. These ranged from “get too many emails,” to “the offers were not valuable,” to an open text box where I could give another reason.

Upon submitting my choice, I got an e-mail with links to the Petco website and this message:

Dear Jill, 



This email confirms the changes you recently made to your PETCO.com newsletter subscriptions.Please allow up to 48 hours for your request to be processed. If you unsubscribed to any newsletters, you may receive emails during this time. If you unsubscribed from all newsletters, you will continue to receive transactional emails, such as order confirmations.

You may make changes to newsletter profile at any time by logging in to

Your Account.Thank you,



This is smart. It gives Petco good data to measure the effectiveness of their e-mail program. It gives the subscriber a chance to have a voice about the relationship he or she wants moving forward.

One thought on “A Tale of Two Unsubscribe Experiences

  1. Hi Jill!

    Happy to hear you had a positive experience with opting out of PETCO emails and you were able to let us know why you decided to do so. As you state, it is important to give customers a voice so we can understand the reasons behind customers who decide to opt out, and make changes or updates as needed. Let us know if you have any feedback and thanks again.

    Natalie Davis
    Director, E-Commerce at PETCO.com