A list of new customers - emails only, no orders - appears on my dashboard home page. I'm wondering about the source. I think they are perhaps garbage. I only use a third-party sign up form on my site, and those subscriptions come to me via email so I can add them to my external database. These emails are tagged with "password page, prospect", which are tags I have not created (since I use an external database there are no tags in my Shopify customer list; I sync using email via a custom script). How else would these emails get on my list? I'm wondering if it's people who add items to their cart and create an account but don't actually place an order? I get abandoned cart emails with $750 donations (therefore unlikely to be people not already affiliated with my organization) pretty frequently and when I click them I get an error message.
Do you agree with my hunch that these are not really potential customers and I can safely delete this list?
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Cal here from Shopify, thanks for reaching out to us. That does sound quite strange. Are you fully certain there is no newsletter signup form on your site that bots could be using? It's unusual that they would appear in your customers' section in your admin and set to accept marketing communications if they never consented via a signup form. You could have the correct theory here, in that it's getting to the first part of checkout, inputting an email address and then quitting out.
Are we talking a huge number of these email signups or a relatively small number? Do the email addresses look legitimate? Are they all coming from the same source?
Hi Cal, thanks for responding so quickly. There is no other signup form on my website. How do I ascertain the source (do you mean an IP address?). Emails look legitimate enough - variety of yahoo, gmail, hotmail, all in the format of firstname.lastname@example.org which does raise a bit of suspicion. The red flag for me is that I have never created the tags "password page" or "prospect." Also my mailchimp signup includes the name and none of these contacts has a name - email only. There are 26 of these emails.
And is your password page still active on the store at all? Can you check Online Store -> Preferences, and check to make sure your password page is disabled. There is a signup form on the password page by default, which could be causing these signups.
You can read more about the password page here: http://bit.ly/2JAHEDK
OMG That must be it! I had password protected the site for about a month while I was redesigning and there's the email signup on that page. All of these emails came in during that period. I have since turned it off. Thank you!
I'm 99% sure it's bots. How do I verify the source of the emails to pull out any that might be legit?
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Ah, that makes perfect sense! Unfortunately, there is no sure way to differentiate between legitimate signups or illegitimate ones. We do have a security algorithm that makes sure that there wasn't a huge amount of email signups at once from the same IP, which is often the case with bots.
You could email this particular list, and thank them for signing up for early access to the store, offer them a small discount as a promotional offer, and if there are any sales using the discount you know they are legitimately interested in your store. If there is no response, then you can disregard them. Often when you attempt to email these 'customers' delivery of the email would fail as there is no inbox matching the account. In this case, you could also remove them from your marketing list.
I'm so happy I found this post because the exact same thing is happening in my store. Before I disabled the password for the initial go-live (The store has never gone live before) I already had 26 email subscribers, no other information such as names and all under the "tags" #password page and #prospect which I never Created. Its also not possible that it could be individuals interested in my store because no one knows about my store except my 3 siblings. I would definitely say its Bots and I'm going to go ahead and just delete them off my store.
Thanks for responding i hope this helps others too.