Implicit Consent

What is it?

What is it?

"Implicit Consent" in email marketing refers to the assumption or inference of consent based on a pre-existing business relationship or interaction between a sender and a recipient rather than obtaining explicit opt-in permission. Implicit consent may arise from previous transactions, inquiries, or communications where the recipient voluntarily provided their contact information to the sender.

Key points to remember

Key points to remember

  • Pre-Existing Relationship: Implicit consent is based on the premise that recipients have implicitly consented to receive email communications from a sender with whom they have an existing business relationship, such as a customer, subscriber, or member of an organization.

  • Implied Permission: Recipients may reasonably expect to receive communications related to their previous interactions or transactions with the sender, even if they did not explicitly opt-in to receive marketing emails, provided that the communications are relevant, non-intrusive, and related to the original context of the relationship.


  • Limitations: While implicit consent may be sufficient for certain transactional or service-related communications, such as order confirmations, account updates, or membership notifications, it may not be adequate for sending promotional or marketing emails, which typically require explicit opt-in consent under privacy regulations.


  • Opt-Out Provision: Even in cases of implicit consent, senders must provide recipients with clear and easy-to-use options to opt-out or unsubscribe from future email communications, respecting their preferences and ensuring compliance with anti-spam laws and regulations.


  • Risk Factors: Relying solely on implicit consent without proper opt-in mechanisms or consent management practices may increase the risk of complaints, unsubscribes, and deliverability issues, as recipients may perceive unsolicited emails as spam or unwanted communications.

Example of Use

Example of Use

  1. Transactional Communications: An online retailer sends order confirmation emails, shipping notifications, and delivery updates to customers who have purchased on their website, assuming implicit consent for these transactional communications based on their purchase activity.


  2. Membership Updates: An association sends periodic newsletters, event invitations, and policy updates to its members, assuming implicit consent for these communications based on their ongoing membership status and engagement with the organization.

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