Top tips for boosting email open rates

5 minute read

It’s the beginning of a new week, you’re at your desk, drinking coffee and analysing the performance of your recent email campaign and thinking eek, my email open rates aren’t great, why aren’t people opening my email? Fear not, we’ve listed some of our top tips for boosting your open rates.

Are your opens being accurately tracked?

First things first, are opens being accurately tracked? Within the system we track opens by the images that are loaded. If there are no images it rests on links being clicked. It’s good email practice to include a balance of text and images within your email and it’s especially important if you want to get an accurate picture of who is opening your email.

  • Plan of action: ensure you have a healthy balance of images and text in your email (this is also good for ensuring your email doesn’t get marked as spam!).

How obvious is it that the email is from you?

Before a subscriber opens your email the first thing they see is the subject line and from name, so a huge weight of importance rests on this information. We recommend running a split test to see what resonates with your readers, it’s a great feature and allows you to see what factors influence the success of your campaigns. Be sure to be consistent with your name and address, the company name is always a good place to start.

  • Plan of action: first check that your from name and address is recognisable, and then run a split test to see how different subject lines perform.

When are you sending your campaign?

Do you have a set send time and do your subscribers know when to expect your email? A common trait we often spot is that emails are sent at random times of the day, and infrequently. There is a lot to be said for structuring a time of day on a specific day in the week. People like routine and they will learn to expect your email at a certain point in the week. The more they come to expect it, the more time they are likely to make for your email.

  • Plan of action: look at previous results, what time and day saw the best results? When is a suitable (and feasible) time for you to be ready to send your email?

Is it landing in the inbox?

You’re happy with your email, you think it looks good and yet the result across the board are low. This may indicate that your email is being spammed, meaning that people are sadly missing out on your email. We offer a spam test report which will offer you guidance on any potential problems in the email you’re about to send.

  • Plan of action: test, test, test your email before sending!

Is your email engaging with subscribers?

The key with your emails is that they should be building a relationship with subscribers, your potential customers. As such you need to ensure that you’re giving people a reason to open your email, engaging content is at the heart of email success. If you’re unsure what your subscribers want to hear from you, ask them. A little bit of honesty as well as asking for their opinion might add a nice tone to your emails.

  • Plan of action: give the people what they want! Is your email interesting enough to make people open future emails from you?

Are you benchmarking?

All of the above tips are really important but it’s also vital that you benchmark yourself against others in your industry. This will give you an accurate picture of results you should be expecting. Within your account you can compare yourself against others in your industry – just make sure you set your industry type! You can also check out our 2014 email marketing benchmark report for lots of interesting industry statistics.

  • Plan of action: gain an accurate picture on the results you should be expecting.

These are just a handful of pointers and we hope they will prove to be useful to you. Tell us your stories of how you’ve improved lower than expected results, we’d love to hear from you so drop us an email or leave your comments below.