As digital marketing continues to evolve, business owners and marketers alike may ask, “Is email marketing still a worthwhile tactic for generating leads?”. The answer in short, is yes. As the highest producing marketing channel for ROI, email has maintained its reputation and continues to be an effective way to engage with prospects while also building relationships with existing customers.
However, including email marketing within your digital ecosystem is only effective if best practices, strategy, and optimization also accompany it to convince recipients to complete your desired action.
If your metrics have begun to fall flat, now may be the time to consider evaluating the effectiveness of your campaigns. Email conversion rate in particular, is one of the most valued metrics when analyzing performance and plays a critical role in measuring the success of the campaign. Before your next email, consider the following 5 data-backed strategies for improving your email conversion rates:
Adopt a “mobile-first” strategy
With over 50% of emails opened on a mobile device, optimizing your content, layout, and copy for mobile is critical to improving conversion rates. If your emails are not mobile-friendly, you’ll run the risk of losing the opportunity to drive results and engage with your audience. Before building your next campaign, consider the following tips to optimize your emails for mobile:
- Keep your subject line between 30-45 characters
- Include pre-header text
- Be word-wise and keep you copy concise
- Make your CTA’s clickable links
- Optimize images to reduce file size
- Test the campaign on multiple devices
Personalize your content
Customers have come to expect and demand personalized content based on their preferences, behaviours, and interests. Personalization, in the context of email marketing, is the act of tailoring an email campaign to a specific subscriber rather than an automated message sent out to an entire list. What data can you already gather about your subscribers? If you have their name, birthday, or location – this is a great place to start.
With 75% of consumers more likely to buy from a retailer that recognizes them by name, recommends products or services based on past purchases, or knows their purchase history, email personalization is the key to driving sales and improving conversions.
When developing your next campaign, we recommend these highly effective personalization tactics:
- Segment your email lists into smaller groups (segments) based on specific geographic, demographic, psychographic, or behavioural criteria.
- Address the recipients by their name
- Schedule emails to send in recipient’s time zone
- Include dynamic content to make the campaign more relevant and appealing to subscribers
- Make the sender a person (John at X company versus The Marketing Team at X Company”)
- Test your subject line to develop the most effective variant
Use Strong subject lines that elicit an action
Improving email conversions starts with an effective, impactful subject line. As the first element subscribers consume, subject lines need to quickly grab the recipient’s attention and strike a balance between informative and intriguing. Whatever your approach, it is important to always keep your audience in mind and A/B test different words or phrases to determine what they prefer.
The key to crafting a conversion boosting subject line often starts with:
- Personalization; Add the recipients name
- Including a compelling offer
- Creating a sense of urgency
- Descriptive/Informative text
- Using less than 50 – 60 characters
- Including numbers; email subject lines that use numbers have higher open rates
Run A/B Testing
If you’re having trouble determining what approach, campaign, or messaging yields the best results with your audience, running A/B testing is a simple and effective tool to gain insight. A/B testing, in the context of email marketing, is the process of sending different variations of a single email to different subsets of your audience to identify which variation of the campaign garners the best results.
In other words, A/B testing puts two emails against each other to see which is superior. Running these tests is much simpler than most marketers think and can lead to substantial improvement to key metrics within your campaigns.
Variables often tested for performance include but are not limited to:
- From name
- Subject line
- Send time/day
- Calls to action
- Imagery / design elements
- Links and buttons
Keep in mind that when running A/B testing, assessing only one variable at a time is critical in drawing accurate and valuable conclusions. Changing more than one variable (ie the subject line and the CTA) within a single email test makes it much more difficult to analyze a metric and leads to inaccurate data.
Setup Automated Campaigns
Automated email is any message, or sequence of messages, automatically sent from your email service provider triggered by particular actions taken by your audience. For example, when someone signs up for your newsletter, you can automatically send a welcome email to their inbox. Aside from nurturing leads and engaging with your customers, email automation helps reach the right people at the right time, and leads to improved email conversion rates.
Here are some examples of automated emails you can begin sending your subscribers:
- Welcome emails
- Birthday or anniversary emails
- Newsletter and blog updates
- Sales & Events
- Loyalty & Rewards
To learn more about how you can improve your email marketing, read our blog post, Email Marketing 101: A Guide for Small Businesses or get in touch with us today.