Email has become one of the primary methods of communication in today’s society. Each day our inboxes are inundated with emails from friends, family, and brands. In fact, according to a recent report by Adobe, The Art of the Click: Actionable Insight for Email-Marketing Success, the average person spends almost six and a half hours a day checking and responding to email. The report was compiled as a partnership between Adobe and Email on Acid, utilizing data from thousands of users testing email marketing campaigns. Adobe is a premier client of Email on Acid and uses the platform to test hundreds of emails for improved deliverability and readability for consumers globally.

Despite that level of audience, the report also showed that two-thirds of marketers are less than satisfied with email marketing efforts. With the amount of time audiences spend looking at email, as well as the investment brands make in email marketing, it is certainly worth spending some time highlighting the findings of Adobe’s report and looking at ways we can implement its takeaways.

List growth

One of the most surprising findings of this report was regarding list growth. List growth has declined 100% in two years. Consumers today are blasted with marketing noise from every direction. We found that there is a 52% increase year over year in email volume. That is 61% more emails in your inbox than in 2014. This type of volume can lead to a lack in customer desire to sign up for more emails or subscribe to additional websites. So if a customer does sign up, you had better make sure your emails are designed to stand out.

Holiday hotspot

As most email marketers are aware, the holidays can be a hot spot for email growth. As expected, the holiday season was one of the biggest money makers for both brick and mortar and e-retailers. But many retailers are seeing the need—thanks to their customers’ growing expectations—for an email marketing campaign. Last year, holiday-themed list sizes grew 34%. That is a significant amount of sales, so marketers need to be ready to capitalize on the opportunity.

The mystery of unique opens

Most marketers chase the idea of the unique open. That’s a valiant pursuit, but retailers need to know that just 14.2% of emails result in a unique open, while only half are read more than once. Knowing precisely how your email looks within each platform can be just the thing to keep customers coming back to your message. Email development software can help you get the right message in front of the right audience.

Timing

Emails sent later in the day are more likely to be read. This is particularly noteworthy for retailers, as most online shoppers are checking emails after normal work hours. While the majority of companies send their emails prior to 9:00 a.m., assuming consumers are reading during commutes or otherwise it is a better idea to focus on the later hours of the day. Data confirms that open rates are higher and delete rates are lower in the evening. The report indicated that marketers should “consider A/B testing to determine the ideal timing for your email marketing campaigns. Of course, the value of your message should be clear and concise because average read time on email is only 12.3 seconds.” Email developers should consider continuous testing on current templates to ensure maximum deliverability and readability.

Email marketing is one of the strongest tools for marketers to meet and engage with customers all over the world. It’s time to learn how best to use it and create flawless, user-focused campaigns.

This article originally appeared in the February 2017 issue of Direct Marketing. 

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John Thies

John Thies is the CEO and co-founder of Email on Acid, a service that gives email marketers a preview of how their emails are displayed in the most popular email clients and mobile devices. He resides in Denver, Colorado with his wife and son. When he isn’t working he’s either on the golf course or snowboarding in the fresh Colorado powder.

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