MailChimp SPF & DKIM Explained

Not only do we help many of our clients with MailChimp, but we also use it ourselves here at Maneo Web. We love MailChimp for its ease-of-use, reliability, and affordability. There are other options out there but we have found MailChimp to be the best.

MailChimp SPF & DKIM are often overlooked

Did you know there is a very important setting in MailChimp that many people miss before they start sending out emails? This setting is often overlooked because most people don’t know what it is for or how to use it.

You need to know about the MailChimp SPF and DKIM settings because they could help improve your email deliverability and as MailChimp puts it, “make your campaigns look more professional.”

What am I talking about? Well if you login into MailChimp, click on your username (in the top left corner), click account, click on settings, and then click domains, you’ll see something like this:

MailChimp SPF Settings Explained

On your screen, you will see that your domain is probably not yet authenticated. So what’s this all about and why do you need to authenticate?

Well you need to remember that the big email servers like Gmail and Yahoo are always watching out for fraudulent emails. When you use MailChimp, the emails are coming from your email address (, but it is MailChimp (not your domain) which is actually sending the emails.

Because of this, some email services may flag your emails as spam because they can’t verify the email is coming from your domain.

When you authenticate your domain with DKIM and SPF, you are “providing evidence” to email services that you are who you say you are. You are telling these services that you are allowing MailChimp to send emails on behalf of your domain. This important step will improve your deliverability rate.

So how do you actually authenticate your domain? MailChimp provides some good instructions on how to do this. You’ll need to login to the DNS manager for your website (website zone editor or Cpanel) and add the necessary records which are as follows:

DKIM: Create a CNAME record for with this value:

SPF: Create a TXT record for with this value: v=spf1 ?all

It might take a day or two for MailChimp to recognize these records. In our experience, however, it usually only takes a few minutes for MailChimp to authenticate your domain once you have added the records.

For optimal MailChimp performance, we recommend all of our clients authenticate their domains with DKIM and SPF records. If you need help with this, please feel free to contact us.