Email marketing can be an excellent way to promote content and products. However, sometimes it can be difficult to get people to view your emails. How many times have you spent hours crafting the perfect email only to have just a fraction of the recipients actually open the thing? Believe me--I know the frustration you feel. But did you know you may be able to combat low open rates just by sending your emails out at different times?
Changing the timing of your emails is a great way to increase click through rates and drive traffic to your web page or blog. It can even help you to gain new followers, subscribers, and customer conversions; plus, those who do open your emails may forward them to other potentially interested parties. In this post, we'll go over the best day and the best time to send marketing emails.
Tuesday is Your New Favorite Day of the Week
Okay, so maybe Friday is your actual favorite day of the week. But not when it comes to marketing emails! A study from Hubspot found that business emails sent on Tuesdays had 20 percent more opens than the average opens for those sent on any other day. Monday and Wednesday weren’t terribly far behind, tying for a close second at 18 percent. Thursday and Friday came in at 15 and 8 percent, respectively.
You probably see the trend here: people gradually open their emails less and less as the week goes on. In fact, by the time the weekend rolls around, the average daily open rate for marketing emails plummets drastically. While Saturday and Sunday are less than an ideal day to send a marketing email, Sunday is the lesser of the two evils.
So, What’s the Best Time to Send A Marketing Email?
Now that we’ve established that the earlier days of the week are the best time to send an email blast, let’s talk about the actual time of day. According to Hubspot’s study, the highest average open rates for the entire week occur between 10 AM and 12 PM EST, peaking at 11 AM. However, this holds true only if you’re sending your email between Monday and Saturday. If you choose to send an email on Sunday, it’s best to send it in the evening between 8 and 10 PM. In fact, emails sent at 9 PM have a 35 percent higher open rate than the average open rate for Sunday emails.
What about the Holidays?
When done strategically, the holidays can be the best time to send email blasts for sales and coupons. The drawback is that people receive a lot of them. Not only do you have to be strategic about the subject line and content, but you’ll need to pay attention to the timing too.
The holidays are a bit of a wild card since they don't follow the typical timing rules we've laid out. Instead, holidays follow their own schedule. In this post, we'll take a look at how email marketing is affected by a few of the major holidays in America: Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Memorial Day, and the Fourth of July.
Thanksgiving: People tend to stop opening marketing emails on Thanksgiving Eve. This decline continues until the Wednesday after Thanksgiving Day, when open rates spike to 106 percent of the daily average. With this information in mind, it’s best to wait to send marketing emails until the week after the holiday.
Christmas: During Christmas time, open rates hit a drop on December 22 that lasts until after the start of the New Year. Likely because people are busy with their holiday plans, open rates decline by 42 percent on Christmas Eve and 72 percent on Christmas Day.
New Years: Open rates remain low through the beginning of the new year. Between January 5 and January 8, engagement boosts by about 12 percent. Since people have a lot of email clutter to sort through once they start checking in again, the best time to send marketing emails is after the holiday craziness has winded down a bit. This way, you’re less likely to be lost in the bottom of the pile.
Memorial Day: During the Memorial Day weekend, most people are on vacation and are unlikely to pay much attention to their inboxes. On Monday, open rate drops by about 32 percent. But, from the Tuesday immediately after Memorial day weekend and all the way through that week, email engagement increases by about 19 percent.
Fourth of July: Around the Fourth of July holiday, open rates are at their highest on the Thursday before July 4. This is most likely because people are getting ready for the celebration and are more willing to view a marketing email such as a promotional offer. However, this declines on the actual holiday as well as on in-lieu days (alternative days off if the holiday falls on a weekend).
Timing Is and Isn’t Everything
While adjusting the time that you send your marketing emails can help to improve open rate and engagement, that doesn’t mean you should pay any less attention to the quality of your emails.
In 2016, the average person received about 90 emails per day. I don’t know about you, but I get a little trigger-happy with the delete button after a while. In order to stand out amongst the crowd of competition, you need to work on the quality of your preview, body content, and subject line. Try using words and phrases that convey urgency. For example, “Check out this can’t miss sale” or “Last chance to save!” These types of words and phrases can potentially increase the likelihood of engagement because people don’t want to miss out on an exclusive offer.
The layout of your emails is also an important factor, especially when it comes to mobile optimization. On a weekday around 11 AM, the best time for peak open rates, most people are out of the house. Whether they're at work or out running errands, the point is that they're not sitting at their computer. This means that most of these people will be viewing your emails from a mobile device. In fact, about 91 percent of people check their email from their smartphones at least once per day. If your email is not optimized for mobile viewing, you’re likely going to deter people from viewing it; they may even be inclined to unsubscribe since your emails are too difficult to read.
Changing the day and time that you send your marketing emails may significantly improve your open rates, though you’ll need to change your strategies when it comes to holidays since most people won’t be checking their accounts. Additionally, you still need to pay attention to the quality of your content in order to stand out and give viewers the best possible experience.
While it may take a bit of analysis on your part, finding the best time to send email blasts and marketing emails can help increase the efficiency and effectiveness of your email marketing campaigns. For more information on email marketing and other digital marketing practices, check out our blog page.