In email marketing, an open rate is a metric by which the total number of ‘opened’ emails in an email campaign is calculated. These rates will vary greatly based on several factors, like content relevancy, personalization, subject line, and so on.
The average open rate for 2020 is at an all-time low at 17.80%. This is comparatively lower than the industry average in the past years, with the average in 2019 alone sitting at 22.1% and even higher than that between 2015-2018 where the average was at a steady 24% globally. Such a decline is worrying for many business owners who rely upon the success of their marketing campaigns—and thus, their email open rates—to generate new business for their brand.
Continue reading if you want to learn more about open rates and how you can surpass the projected email open rate average and reach heights that will allow you to succeed over all your competitors!
What is an Email Open Rate?
Despite the name, there is more nuance to ‘email open rates’ than just describing an email that has been opened. In order for an email to actually be considered ‘open’ several things must happen that prove a certain level of engagement:
- The recipient clicks a link included in the email
- Recipient loads enough of the email to view images in full
It should be noted that emails that are not ‘delivered’ do not count in the calculations for open rates either. The only thing up for consideration is whether the email has been ‘opened’ or not opened based on the factors mentioned above.
Now that we’ve reviewed what factors are involved in email open rates, we can officially begin breaking down the 5 simple strategies recommended by industry professionals:
5 Strategies to Improve Email Open Rates
1. Analyze Your Target Audience
According to Ross Andrew Paquette, the CEO of Maropost (a fast-growing marketing automation platform), one of the biggest mistakes a business can make is to focus on quantity over quality. Paquette claims that, “this just doesn’t work” and that, “by choosing such an impersonalized approach to marketing, you’re only hurting yourself.”
And so, the Maropost CEO recommends, instead, that you “-focus on getting to know your customer-base as actual individuals.” This way, you can provide the best possible customer experience for them and send out personalized messages that they will actually want to engage with.
2. Segment Your Subscribers List
Once you’ve identified the topics that your subscribers would want to receive and determined why they subscribed to your list in the first place, you can begin to target them based on what you know.
For this, we recommend list segmentation. Why? Well, it’s been statistically proven that businesses that segment their Subscribers Lists experience higher open rates, along with lower unsubscribe rates and higher deliverability rates. All of which point to great success in bringing new customers and more revenue into your business.
3. Perfect Your Subject Line
The subject line is one of the most important aspects of your emails. So, it pays to invest some time in perfecting this specific craft. Or else, have someone else with experience to do it for you.
This is just one of the more obvious strategies for improving email open rates, but it still deserves some saying. You can’t go wrong with a good hook!
4. Pay Attention to Timing & Consistency
Outside of the content of your emails, you also have to pay attention to timing and consistency. Based on your analysis of your existing audience, what hours are they the most active? What days are they the most likely to open emails?
This type of analysis is possible through some A/B testing, which is easy enough to do with the help of marketing automation platforms like Maropost. So, there really shouldn’t be anything stopping you from doing it! And, once you’ve figured out the best time to send these emails, the only thing you have to do is to stay consistent so that your subscribers can get accustomed to receiving emails at certain days and times.
5. Consider Your Platforms!
Some experts believe that the reason why open rate averages have slowly been decreasing is the lack of consideration for mobile platforms.
In 2020, almost 70% of those surveyed claimed that they use their smartphone to check their email. A percentage that has been slowly growing larger and larger over the years. Which makes it vital that you make your emails as mobile-friendly as possible.
The Bottom Line: Email Open Rates
Email Open Rates are less complicated than most people think. Sure, it can be a bit tricky to unravel without the proper data and equipment. But, these days, so long as you have the support of platforms like Maropost, which will allow you to perform dynamic email marketing, you don’t have anything to worry about!