Improve Your Email Open Rates

This section is crucial because, despite all the work you have done to build your email list and segment it properly, it won’t be of any benefit if your emails don’t get opened.

Many factors play a part in whether your emails are opened.  Let’s look at each one.

  1. Avoid Spam Filters

The most obvious problem is when an email gets sent to the spam folder of a subscriber.  You’re already in control of sending emails and have chosen one of our preferred email marketing providers.

These are the top email marketing tips to prevent your emails from getting lost in spam folders.

  • Check that all recipients have opted in to receive your emails.  This point cannot be stressed enough.
  • Use a reliable IP address to send your email campaign. This is an IP address that has not been used in the past to send spam.
  • Verified domains are used to send emails
  • Keep your email template code clean.
  • To personalise your email campaign’s “To:” field, use merge tags
  • Let subscribers know how to whitelist their emails and ask them for your address.
  • Avoid using “salesy language” (these are trigger words like “buy”, ‘clearance”, ‘discount’, or “cash”)
  • Do not “bait-and-switch”, using deceptive subject lines.
  • Include your location.

This is almost all handled by a reputable email marketing service.

To keep your list fresh, remove inactive subscribers

To keep your subscribers happy, it is important to send out emails on a regular basis.  Email subscribers can become stale even if they are updated on a regular basis.

You might have lost contact with someone, or they may not be interested in your brand anymore.

It’s a smart idea to remove inactive subscribers from your list.  This will keep it fresh and full of engaged subscribers.  Anyone who hasn’t engaged with an email within the last six months could be considered an inactive subscriber.

Before you delete them, send one more email campaign to re-engage inactive subscribers.  Carol Tice, for example, sends an email asking inactive subscribers if they want to remain subscribed.  Some people reply, but all other subscribers are purged.

You can also keep your subscribers’ information up-to-date by checking in with them every now and again to see if they want to change their preferences or update their information.  They are reminded they have the power to interact with you in their own way.

  1. Perfect your timing

Timing can make a big difference in whether your subscribers open your email and how successful you convert.  So think carefully about when and what day your emails are sent.

To find the best time for your campaign, you will need to perform A/B tests.

You may wonder if anyone has done any tests you could benefit from.  Yes!

According to GetResponse’s study, Tuesdays had the highest open and click-through rates.

A study by Yes Marketing showed that Saturdays are the most effective day for conversions.

Imagine a day in your audience’s life.  This is the bottom line when it comes to email send time.  What do they do in the morning, evening, and night?  What is their typical workday like?  What time do they go to bed at night?  What time do they get up in the morning?

These questions will help to decide the best hour to send your emails.

  1. Your subject line should stand out

Your subject lines matter when it comes to email click and open rates.  It is your job to make sure that your subject lines are memorable.

These are some suggestions for creating the best email subject lines.

  • Inspire curiosity but don’t get too clever. It’s important to get subscribers to click and open your emails, but not be too cryptic so that they don’t know what you are talking about.
  • Include numbers. Numbers are what draw the eye.
  • Use a friendly, conversational tone.
  • Talk in the same language and style as your subscribers, especially when speaking with friends.

We have a whole post about the best subject lines.

  1. Only one person can be reached by your letter

It’s normal to imagine the thousands of people who will be receiving your message and subject line when you write it.  However, it’s much more effective to write like you are speaking to a person.

This is why you must get to know your buyer persona.  It is important to get to know your buyer persona, including their needs, values, desires, likes and dislikes.Send an email to request a five-minute chat if you have any questions.  You can ask questions to help you understand your subscribers’ needs and what they think.  It will pay off to spend a few days talking with your subscribers.  This will help you with your messaging and creating or improving your products and services.

  1. Write like a friend

Write like a friend when you are writing emails.  This is the best way to appeal to your subscribers and get them open and click on your emails.

A corporate phrase such as “We offer savings to our customers!” can come off as distant or stuffy.   Alternatives that are more approachable include “You’ve got to check out this deal …”.”   This makes your email feel more personal, and it is less likely that recipients will just delete your message and move on to the next one.

Keep in mind that everyone is searching for reasons to ignore your emails in today’s information age.  They don’t want to be bothered by them.  However, if you can appeal to them on an individual level, your chances of getting their email opened are better.

  1. Create Amazing Content Every Time

You might think that if a subscriber opens an email from you, they are essentially winning the battle.  Your open rate is influenced by the content of your email.

This is why: If your subscribers are satisfied with your content, they will be more likely to open future emails.  You may find that they look forward to your emails.  If subscribers are unhappy with the content of your email, they won’t open it again and may unsubscribe.

How can you ensure your subscribers love your email content?  It’s simple: Make it great.

You can link to incredibly valuable resources like a free ebook, epic blog post, or webinar.

It is important to ensure that you don’t just send emails to send them.  You must deliver real value every time you email your subscribers.  Your subscribers will be more loyal if you send them emails with real value.  Also, your open rates will rise.

  1. Inject Some Humor

Humour can make people feel connected instantly.  It’s funny, personal, and sticks out in people’s minds.

What if you’re not a funny person?  It can be difficult to be funny or clever, especially when you have to fit your efforts into the limited parameters of an email subject.  This can be very tricky.

You don’t need to be a comedian to send a funny email.  It is more important to get to know your recipients so you can anticipate what they will respond to. It will be easier to make a joke or a tongue-in-cheek comment if you know what their interests are.

Here’s a humorous email example that is sent to subscribers who have been inactive for a while.

  • Hello, I tried contacting you about [ Value proposition] but have not heard back. Please let me know if you have any questions.
  • You are all set, and you should stop bothering me.
  • You are interested but have not yet responded.
  • You should follow up in three months.
  • A hippo is chasing you. Please call Animal Control.

Funny animated GIFs or funny videos can be added to your emails.  You don’t have to be a comedian in order to inject humour and personality into your email.  All you need is creativity.

  1. Optimise for Mobile

Mobile email accounts account for 67% of all email opens, depending on your target audience, product and email type.

Mobile optimisation is a must-have for mobile users.

Your email should be responsive and include easily-loadable media.  Mobile screens are smaller, so subject lines that are too long may be cut off.

These are just a few of the best tips for email marketing to appeal to mobile users.

  • Keep formatting simple (single column) and under 600px wide
  • Make sure to use a larger font. Mobile devices can’t read small fonts.
  • Images are not displayed by default on Android. It should look great without images.
  • Reduce load time by using smaller images
  • Make sure to use a big call to action button. It is easier to tap larger buttons with a thumb.
  • Do not place more than one link next to or over another. This will ensure that the user doesn’t accidentally tap on the wrong link.

These marketing tips will help you get higher open rates for your campaign.  However, don’t be discouraged if you don’t see any improvement right away.

Email marketing is both an art and a science.  So be open to trying new tactics and seeing which ones work best for you and your subscribers.

You can find more tips and tricks to increase your email open rates.