When setting up your instance of Stemsend you’ll want to select an email service provider to deliver the emails you send. Our suggestion is Amazon Simple Email Service for this task, as it’s cost-effective and has great delivery rates. This article will explain the steps needed to set up your Amazon SES account for Stemsend.

Create an SES Account & Select Your Region

Create your amazon SES account and note the region selected in the upper right-hand corner (US-West, US-East, etc). It’s important that you keep the region the same for the entirety of this process.

Configure Your Domain DNS Settings (Add CNAME and TXT Records)

From the Amazon SES console, click Domains and “Verify a New Domain”. Enter your domain name and amazon will generate a Domain Verification record (a text record) and a DKIM record (CNAME) set.

You’ll use these records to update your DNS setting with your domain registrar (or wherever your domain’s DNS is configured).

After you’ve added these records to your domain DNS, go to your Amazon SES account > Domains and click “Verify this domain”.

Add Email Address(es) to Amazon SES

This part is pretty straight forward luckily; head to your Amazon SES account console > Email Addresses. Click “Verify a New Email Address” and add the email you want to add.

They’ll simply send an email to the address you enter, and you’ll open it to verify that email address.

Create SNS Topic for Bounces Monitored in Stemsend

You’ll be required by Amazon to handle bounces before they’ll take your account out of ‘sandbox’ mode and let you email in bulk. Stemsend supports Amazon SES’ bounce and complaint management system.

Head to Amazon SNS and look for ‘Topics’ on the left menu. Click it and create a new Topic called ‘Stemsend’. Simply name the topic and create it (there are other options here you can ignore).

Now that you’ve got your topic set up, click the topic and then click the button that says “Create subscription”.

Select HTTP as the protocol and enter http://yourdomain.com/mailer/amazon/callback as the endpoint, where yourdomain.com is the Stemsend installation. If your instance of Stemsend is installed on a subdomain (email.mydomain.com) you would use that as the base for your url so the full url would look like http://email.mydomain.com/mailer/amazon/callback. ARN will be prefilled so you can create your subscription now.

This will allow Amazon to communicate to your instance of Stemsend and it should verify itself so allow an hour or so for this to work itself out.

Configuring Amazon SES to Delivery Bounce/Complaints Using SNS Topic

This is the last step for handling bounces/complaints, so follow closely. Go back to domains on your amazon SES console.

Select your domain, click the Notifications dropdown and click “Edit Configuration”. Underneath SNS Topic Configuration, click the dropdowns and select the topic you created earlier. Save this configuration and you’re good to go!

Create IAM User & Get Un-Sandboxed

Head to your Amazon SES Console and click “Smtp Settings”. Click “Create My SMTP Credentials”. Simply doing this will prepopulate the form and you can then click “Create” which will give you an SMTP user and password.

Copy this information down somewhere save as you’ll need to enter it on the dashboard side of Stemsend.

Since Amazon will limit your email sending amount by default, you’ll need to contact them to remove your account from Sandbox Mode. To do so, go here and fill out the form requesting that they increase your sending limit.

That’s all you have to do–Amazon is ready to send your emails and handle bounces/complaints. You’re in business!