Delete contacts who have unsubscribed or hard bounced

Last updated: May 17, 2019

Applies to:

Marketing Hub  Starter, Professional, Enterprise
Legacy Marketing Hub Basic

Export a CSV file of contacts who have hard bounced or unsubscribed from your email subscription types. You can then remove these contacts from your account. Learn more about how to keep your contact lists up to date.

Export contacts who unsubscribed or hard bounced

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Email.
  • In the left sidebar menu, click the More tools dropdown menu and select Export unsubscribes and bounces.
  • In the dialog box, confirm your email address. By default, this export will only include hard bounces on email campaigns sent from your account. To include contacts that permanently hard bounced across all HubSpot accounts, select the Include global unsubscribes and bounces checkbox.
  • Click Export.

Please note: this exported file includes all bounces that have ever occurred on emails from your account, including email addresses that were previously deleted or imported in an opt-out list.

Review your exported data

You'll receive an email with a download link to the file with a list of all current and previously deleted contacts who have bounced or unsubscribed from your marketing emails. The following columns will be included in the export:

  • Portal Bounce: if the contact hard bounced on a marketing email sent from your account, you'll see the bounce reason in this column.
  • Portal Unsubscribe: if contact unsubscribed from all marketing emails sent from your account, you'll see a value of TRUE in this column.
  • Portal Spam Report: if the contact marked a marketing email from your account as spam, or they moved the email from their inbox into their junk folder, you'll see a value of TRUE in this column.
  • Global Bounce: if the contact hard bounced for permanent reasons on marketing emails sent from three or more HubSpot accounts, you'll see the bounce reason in this column. This column will only be included if you selected the Include global unsubscribes and bounces checkbox.
  • Email subscription types: if the contact opted out of any email subscription types you've created in your account, you'll see a value of TRUE in the corresponding column. Be default, your account includes the default Marketing Information email subscription type and any blog subscription emails.

Contacts who have not bounced or unsubscribed will have a value of FALSE for all columns in the export file. Contacts who have only opted out from a specific email subscription type are still eligible to receive other types of email.


Review bounce reasons in your export file

Contacts who hard bounced on an email from your account will show one of the following values in the the Portal Bounce column of your export file. Contacts who hard bounced on emails from three or more HubSpot accounts will show one of the following values in the Global Bounce column.

  • UNKNOWN_USER: a server response indicating that the email is currently a non-existent address. This happens when a contact leaves a company and his inbox is taken down or if there is a typo in the email.
  • MAILBOX_FULL: if an inbox fills to capacity, it generally means this is an abandoned address that has not been officially closed out. These emails will almost never be engaged with.
  • CONTENT: something in the email body or subject was a red flag that spam filters deemed spammy content. Take a look at this article detailing SPAM trigger words. (Note: this bounce classification is no longer used for new HubSpot emails, but if it was the cause of an earlier bounce it will be included on the spreadsheet.)
  • SPAM: something in the body, subject, or from address of the email that is classified as SPAM by the recipient’s email server. This category is different from CONTENT because there was something specific about the recipient's email address or the sender's email address that caused the server to categorize the message as SPAM.
  • POLICY: the email did not pass one of the security policies of the recipient's server, but it is not explicit about which one, the bounce will be categorized here. This includes DMARC; DKIM, and SPF authentication failures.
  • ISP_CONFI: the email was rejected by the recipient's server for a permanent reason. This may be the result of an invalid recipient address, or a very strict email security filter.
  • Missing category: the issue was not necessarily email bounces, but related to unsubscribe requests or spam reports. HubSpot will not send to these individuals again.
  • UNCATEGORIZED: the server response from the recipient wasn't specific enough to categorize the bounce.
  • HUBSPOT_GLOBAL_BOUNCE: an email hard bounced for permanent reasons across three or more HubSpot accounts.
Please note: if you see any other values in the Global Bounce or Portal Bounce column that isn't FALSE (including a blank field) the email address has hard bounced for a permanent reason but the categorization type is not available.


Delete contacts who hard bounced or unsubscribed from all emails

Please note: the HubSpot Community features a detailed tutorial about how to export your contacts and filter them in Excel to create your final list. This method is not supported by HubSpot Support.

  • Open the CSV file with Excel and use filters to remove recipient emails that contains FALSE for the headers Portal Bounce, Portal Unsubscribe and Global Bounce. The file should then only contain contacts that have bounced or opted out from all email types.

  • Save your list as a CSV file.

Please note: importing this list may result in a warning email from the Email Deliverability team about the quality of these contacts. This will not have any negative impact on your account.

  • In the list, check the box in the header row to select all of the contacts on the first page of your list.
  • Click Select all x contacts to select all of the contacts in your list.


  • Click the More dropdown menu, then select Delete.