Problems with emails received from Amazon SES - Amazon Simple Email Service

This guide reflects the old console for Amazon SES. For information about the new console for Amazon SES, see the new Amazon Simple Email Service Developer Guide.

Problems with emails received from Amazon SES

This section discusses some common issues that you might see when you receive emails that were sent from Amazon SES.

The email client displays "sent via" as the source of the email

Some email clients display the "via" domain when the sender's domain doesn't match the domain that the email was sent from (in this case, For more information, see Extra info next to sender's name on the Gmail Support website. Alternatively, you can set up DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM). When you authenticate your emails using DKIM, email clients typically don't show the "via" domain because the DKIM signature shows that the email is from the domain that it claims to be from. For information about setting up DKIM, see Authenticating Email with DKIM in Amazon SES.

The message contains garbled or nonsense characters

If your message includes characters that aren't in the ASCII character set (such as accented Latin characters, Chinese characters, or Arabic characters), you have to encode those characters using HTML character encoding. You can use web-based tools to encode the characters in your email, such as the HTML Character Convertor on the Email On Acid website.

Alternatively, you can assemble the MIME message yourself. In the MIME message, you can specify that the message should use UTF-8 encoding. When you use UTF-8 encoding, you can use non-ASCII characters directly in your messages. When you've finished creating the MIME message, you can send it using the SendRawEmail API. To learn more about sending messages using the SendRawEmail API, see Sending Raw Email using AWS SDKs.

One common cause of this issue is the Smart Quotes feature of Microsoft Word. If you often copy content from Word and paste it into your emails, you might encounter this issue. The Smart Quotes feature replaces straight quote characters ("...") with curly quote characters (“...”). Curly quote characters aren't standard ASCII characters. As a result, they might be rendered in some email clients as "??" or as a group of characters such as "“". To correct this issue, you can disable the Smart Quotes feature in Word. Alternatively, you can use the SendRawEmail solution from the preceding paragraph. To learn how to disable this feature, see Smart quotes in Word on the Microsoft Office Support website.