Google Says Bye-Bye: Inactive Gmail Accounts Are About To Be Deleted

Google has announced — once again — that it is cutting off inactive Gmail accounts, starting on December 1. 

“An inactive Google Account is an account that has not been used within a 2-year period,” Google says. “Google reserves the right to delete an inactive Google Account and its activity and data if you are inactive across Google for at least two years.”

Activity is defined as:

  • Reading or sending an email
  • Using Google Drive
  • Watching a YouTube video
  • Sharing a photo
  • Downloading an app
  • Using Google Search
  • Using Sign in with Google to sign in to a third-party app or service

Most of us have done one of those things over the past two years, even if our main email accounts are Microsoft Outlook. Still, we’re probably talking about millions of people here. And email marketers have to play catch-up. 



Email marketers better play catch-up.

“I find it as no surprise that Google is taking this action,” says Ryan Phelan, managing partner at RPE Origin. "For years, senders may not have paid attention to inactive accounts.  Google is forcing their hand in removing them.”  

So what should marketers do? 

“What senders are going to need to do is expect their bounce metrics to have a bump around the first of December (if timing holds) and account for that in their reporting," Phelan says. "Much like X, formerly Twitter, culling bot accounts, this will have the same effect and should be messaged that way.”  

Phelan adds: "I would expect large mailers who don’t have controls in place for inactivity, to see a significant one-time effect on metrics with these changes. However, it should not be a cause for alarm but a reminder for senders that inactivity after two years is something that should have been rectified long time ago."

As for inactive consumers they must do the following. "When your Google Account has not been used within a 2-year period, your Google Account, that is then deemed inactive, and all of its content and data may be deleted," Google writes. "Before this happens, Google will give you an opportunity to take an action in your account by:

  • Sending email notifications to your Google Account
  • Sending notifications to your recovery email, if any exists

 Can't get around to that? Then watch something on YouTube. 

Next story loading loading..