7 Ways to Increase Email Open Rates


Email opening rates have remained stubbornly low for several years now. Various studies over the past three or four years have shown that only around 21% of all email marketing messages get opened. That means that eight out of ten of your customers are ignoring you. That’s not good.

The top sector – religion – is being ignored by over half its email congregation even with a whopping open rate of 48%. It seems that religious emails cannot preach to the converted as much as they would like.

So why is it that so many email marketing messages are ignored – and what can you do about it? Here are three things that will increase your open rate.

What Is the Meaning of the Email Open Rate?

This is the percentage of your subscribers who open the email you sent them, divided by the number of subscribers on your mailing list overall. For the sake of argument, let’s say your mailing list has 100 members.

Your email open rate would be 70% if you had 70 subscribers opening your emails on average. Simply divide the number of subscribers who opened your email by the total number of subscribers to arrive at your email open rate. Your answer should be multiplied by a factor of a hundred.

If you have 70 subscribers out of 100, you get 100% of the result. The open rate indicates how effectively your email marketing approach is working. Also, it can tell you whether or not your emails are being opened by your subscribers. Use this as a key indicator to see if your email campaign plan needs to be reevaluated. Your customer may not follow the intended path through your sales funnel, for example, if your email open rate is poor. This isn’t something you should take lightly.


Below are a few tips for optimizing your open rates:


1. Have something interesting, useful, and relevant to say

Email marketing messages that are just that – marketing – are frankly a waste of your time and money. Your emails are interrupting the day of your customers and potential clients. Put yourself in their shoes.

Imagine you are sitting in a restaurant, having a nice time with friends when suddenly someone rushes up to your table brandishing some product and says “would you like to buy this?” You would no doubt politely – perhaps not so politely – ignore them or tell them to go away.

Yet, when you are sitting working or doing interesting stuff online some email marketing oik does exactly the same, interrupting you saying “hey, how about buying this?” However, go back to that imaginary restaurant. What if your conversation is interrupted by the person at the table next to you with some really interesting and useful information? The chances are you are more likely to listen. The same is true with emails – if they are interesting and give useful information we can use then we are more ready to accept that interruption.

The reason so few marketing emails get opened is that they are marketing emails. Make them information emails and you increase your chances of being opened greatly. Think “how can I help my customers” and not “what can I sell to my customers”.

2. Use your recipient’s name and other details

If someone talks to you and never once mentions you by name you distance yourself from them psychologically. Your name is one of the most important aspects of your self-identity and when other people use it you attach to them more easily.

Similarly, when they ask you “how are your children” or “is your decorating finished” they are demonstrating they are interested in you. Emails get few open rates because they largely show interest in the company sending out the message, rather than the recipient. Email marketing software, of course, allows you to use the person’s first name – but personalization is more than that.

You could collect other personal details such as location, job title, interests and so on which you use in your emails. The more you personalize the better – indeed research shows that if you use the person’s name in the subject line of the email you dramatically increase the open rate. Showing people you like them as an individual will gain higher open rates.

3. Make your subject lines like newspaper headlines

Newspaper headline writers have spent years discovering how to craft the perfect group of words to make people want to read something. Studies show that the headlines which get the most readers are those which are active, not passive. They also contain emotion and are not just flat statements. Furthermore, they include human interest.

If you use the recipient’s name in your subject line, there’s your human interest. So that only leaves you with two other considerations – active emotion. Instead of saying things like “Update on employment prospects” say “George, here’s how to get a pay rise” – it is on the same topic, but it has emotion and suggests action. Also, notice the word count has increased. Headlines in newspapers and email subject lines that contain around 6-11 words tend to get the most readers. Avoid short subject lines in emails – aim for 10 words, that will get you more open too.

4. Send regular, relevant emails.

In order to keep your readers engaged, there are several things you may do. Sending relevant emails on a regular basis is one approach to doing this. They’ll know exactly what you’re up to and when fresh content is made available as a result of this. Another option is to provide members of your email list with access to unique information or discounts. This will keep your audience engaged and devoted to your message.


5. Subject Lines Announcing Free Offers

Your subscribers are more likely to open an email if the subject line includes a promise of a freebie. Make sure to include these in the subject line of your free offer: the title of the promotion. during the time period during which the promotion is accessible. In the area in which the deal is being offered, All the important information about the promotion should be in the body of your email. it’s possible to boost your business’s lead generation and conversion rates by inserting an offer in the subject line of your email.


6. Monitor your open rates and make adjustments as needed.

It’s critical to keep tabs on the open rates of your email campaigns. With this information, you can make changes as needed to make sure that your emails are being opened by the right people. Using a service like Optinmonster might help you keep track of your open rates. For example, you can see how many people read your email, clicked on a link to your website, and even made a purchase.

 The content or style of your email may require revision if open rates are consistently poor. Different email subject lines or sending more emails in a shorter period of time can also be tested.

 Using a service like buzzsumo can also help you track your open rates. buzzsumo is a social media analytics tool that lets you see how influential your followers are. Which of the following choices is best for you?


7. Use effective email design:

In terms of email design, there are a few things you can do to improve open rates. Your email should be easy to read as a first consideration. Be sure to format your email properly and use high-quality fonts, sizes, and colors.

As a final consideration, make sure your email offers useful information. Include eye-catching photos and videos, and proofread your email well before sending it. To the extent possible, personalize your emails for each recipient. Sending a personalized email increases the likelihood of it being opened and read.


Even if you follow all of these suggestions, keep in mind that there are no guarantees. Open rates can only be considerably increased by carefully writing an intriguing subject line and message and delivering them at the most appropriate moment. Despite the fact that only 3% to 4% may seem like a low return on investment, even a tiny improvement in your email campaign can have a big influence. These ten pointers can help you increase the number of people who open your emails.



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