Want to Increase Email Open Rates? Follow these Tips
Do you want to increase your email open rate? Email is one of the most successful marketing channels. For every $1 spent, you can expect an average return of $38. Not even social media can compete with this return on investment! However, you’re only going to see this ROI if your recipients are opening your emails.
If your email open rates aren’t where you want them to be, there are a few ways to see more activity on your emails. Below we share our best strategies for increasing open rates.
Keep Your List of Subscribers Updated
While it may look nice to have a full list of subscribers, it’s the quality of these subscribers that matters. If you have a list of people that are no longer interested in hearing from you, they won’t have any reason to open your emails. This happens all of the time. Instead of going through and opting out of the email lists, people just hit the “Delete All” button.
To ensure your list if filled with active, engaged subscribers who want to hear from you, go through your list often. Any subscriber that hasn’t engaged with your emails in the past six months can be removed. Or, send them an email asking if they still want to hear from you or if there is a better person to reach out to (great for B2B companies).
Segment Your List of Subscribers
If you’re confident that your subscribers are mostly active, the content in your emails may be to blame. Perhaps this is because the emails aren’t relevant. Relevancy is one of the main factors in whether a person opens an email or not. We can all relate – what good is a coupon if you have no need for the item?
The best way to increase the relevancy of your email campaigns is by segmenting your lists. You can segment your lists based on:
- Purchase history
- Amount of purchase
- Type of purchase
- Abandoned forms/shopping cart
Avoid Spam Filters
Spam filters are more sophisticated than in the past, but they aren’t perfect. Some emails still get tripped by the filters and are sent to the spam folder, even though they aren’t spam. Since people generally don’t check their spam folder, this means that your emails could be getting lost. To prevent this from happening, be proactive and stop your emails from being flagged as spam. Ways to do this include:
- Send your campaigns from a good IP address and verified domain
- Make sure your recipients have opted in to receive your messages
- Avoid using pushy, salesy language
- Don’t use deceptive headlines – promise on what you deliver
- Offer an easy way to opt out of your emails
- Include your location
- Keep the code clean
Know the Right Timing
The time and day that you send your emails has an impact on their open rate. You won’t know the perfect time right away, which is why you should split test your emails to identify what times perform best. For example, you can send out identical emails to Group A at 10am and Group B at 10pm.
Generally speaking, the best time to send an email is at 10am during the middle of the week – Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Other good times include 6am, 2pm, 8pm and 10pm. Again, these are general estimates. Do your own research to see when your audience is most likely to open your emails.
Create a Compelling Subject Line
Your subject line is one of the most important parts of your email. To entice people to click on your email, you need a subject line that is creative, unique and precise. While it’s tempting to make your subject line extra crafty, don’t mislead your subscribers, otherwise they will end up angry. Find a way to be creative while delivering on your promise.
Here are some tips for creating the perfect subject line:
- Invite curiosity (but avoid being too cryptic)
- Include numbers to draw attention
- Use a fun or conversational tone
- Speak in a style that your audience uses
Write to One Person – and Be Friendly
When sending out emails, it’s easy to think of thousands of people. But, you should be thinking of just one person. To do this, you’ll need to have a firm understanding of your buyer persona and their likes, dislikes, values and preferences. Think of your personas as individual people and write to them as you would a friend. Use a conversational tone, avoid saley language and include an offer or invitation they can’t refuse.
Another way to personalize your emails is to add a sense of urgency. Let the recipient know that their offer is only good for a short time – maybe a few hours or days. Or, let the person know that only a small amount of inventory is left for select customers. A sense of urgency can prompt someone on the fence to complete the action.
Keep Mobile Users in Mind
More and more people are opening emails on their mobile devices, so you don’t want to overlook your mobile users. Craft content that appeals to people on the go, such as by using readable font, large buttons, small images and links that are spread apart. The more enjoyable your emails are to use, the longer people will stay and interact.
I recommend thinking in terms of a “thumb friendly” design. These designs take into account thumb placement, offering users a smooth and user-friendly experience. Here is a great article to use for reference when thinking about how a thumb is used for navigation, clicking buttons and more.
Email open rates are a good sign that you’re doing something right. If you don’t see a turnaround right away, don’t get discouraged. Find ways to improve your emails and try again. With more experimentation, you can find what entices users to take the next step. To bring your email marketing strategy to the next level, contact WSI Net Advantage at 510-687-9737.
About the Author
Kevin Dean, President of WSI Net Advantage…
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