How to Improve Email Marketing Open Rates

August 18, 2022
How to Improve Email Marketing Open Rates

Email marketing campaigns can be an effective direct response strategy to reach your audience: it contacts consumers directly and offers them a sense of exclusivity. However, it can be hard to maintain a good open rate. There could be several reasons why your audience isn't opening your emails, but by utilizing the tips below, that should change.



First Impressions Matter with Email Marketing

According to Forbes, people don't open emails if the branding isn't clear, or if the subject lines are boring. By that logic, the best way to increase email open rates is to start with the exterior elements of the email: subject line, preview text, and branding.

Make the subject line enticing. It should have a sense of urgency, a promotion, or some combination of the two. Try using words like "sale" and "limited time," but avoid over-punctuation and spam-like phrases. It's also best to keep them short. 69% of people will report an email as spam after reading the subject line, and 47% will open an email solely based on it. Similarly, if spam filters notice certain criteria in your subject line, you may automatically be flagged.

Emails from a no-reply address may be ignored by new subscribers or flagged by spam filters. Ensure your brand name is clear in the sender field.


Email Contents

One way to improve open rates is to create emails with the right content. This can help not only keep people interested enough to open the emails, but drive conversions and decrease the chance of unsubscribing. When creating your next email blast, try to:

  •  Make sure the content either solves an existing problem or updates subscribers with what's new or upcoming.
  • Design the email to look good and be easy to read. Breaking up text with images and making it interactive helps customers to easily digest the content. Use elements and principles of design like white space and balance to design accordingly.
  •  Format appropriately. Emails shouldn't be too small to read or so large the only way to read them is by scrolling horizontally.
  •  Do not make the entire email one image. It can be hidden or blocked by certain service providers.
  •  Always tailor content to affinity groups. A one-size-fits-all doesn't work with all industries.
  • If a store sells both PC and Macs, the store wouldn't send promotions for discounted Apple products to customers who strictly purchase Windows products and vice-versa.
  • Add a clear call to action (CTA). You should direct your audience to the appropriate place to complete the necessary actions.
  •  Make emails mobile-friendly. Almost half of all emails are read on mobile devices.

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Timing is Everything

Sending emails at the right time is also important. You don't want yours to get lost in a sea of emails. At the same time, you need to find the right frequency. Not sending enough emails could cause people to forget about your brand but send too many and you can quickly become labelled as spam. While there is data on the best days and times to send emails, it's important to remember that every audience is different.


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The Right Audience

One of the worst things is sending an email to the wrong people. That could be the wrong email address (bounce rates) or people who are no longer interested in your brand. Only send emails to people who will read them. Ask people to subscribe, make affinity groups, and make sure you clean your lists.


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Test Everything

A/B testing is one of the best methods possible to find what works best for your audience. What may work for some brands, doesn't work for all.

A good example of this is the experiment conducted by Search Engine Journal with their email subject lines. They found that their audience was less likely to open an email with an emoji in the subject line. However, they did mention that the experiment wasn't tested across various audiences, but one large one. Emojis may not have been favourable for their audience, but they could work for others.

With all these tips, your email marketing strategy should see an improvement in opening rates. Remember, the average email opening rate is 21.33%, and that can differ greatly depending on the industry. If you're looking to enhance your email marketing strategy, feel free to contact us at [email protected]