Email marketing is a key marketing strategy for most businesses. However, like everything else in the digital marketing world, email marketing has changed over the years – so what may have worked a few years ago may not be relevant anymore.

We’ve put together this list of best practices for email marketing success in 2017. Follow these best practices to get the most from your email marketing efforts.

It’s time to get personal

Sure, you know your reader’s first name – but does putting it in the subject line really entice your reader to open your email and take action?  Well, maybe sometimes.

These days, personalisation should be more about your reader and what they like, what they want and what they are interested in.

Remind them about those hot shoes, the cool sunnies, or the offbeat t-shirts they abandoned in their shopping cart or clicked on in a previous email. Maybe even give them free shipping or a discount code to entice them to complete the sale.

Also think about your reader’s online habits – When are they online? Which emails are they opening? What are they clicking on? By collecting data on your reader’s habits you are able to provide your reader with offers that are of interest to them at the right time. And this will prove highly valuable (and probably profitable too!).

Be responsive

56% of emails are opened on mobiles!

If your emails aren’t responsive (don’t render well on a mobile device) then your readers will quickly give up trying to open or read your email and it will likely be deleted.

Design emails with a single column layout so your email will be viewed correctly on both desktop and mobile devices (a squished up email is not a pleasant read, nor is one that is too wide for the screen).

The optimal width for emails viewed on a desktop is 600px, 320px for mobile and 640px for retina devices.

Keep in mind the size of your email, shorter emails are a growing trend with email length dropping to around 50 – 125 words. Also think about your image file sizes – mobile devices have a slower load time than desktops so lots of images or larger image files can significantly slow down load time on mobile devices.

Watch your fonts

Keep the number of fonts you use to a minimum.

Generally two fonts is best practice – a simple or clear font for body text and a bolder or fancier one for headlines.

Only use email safe (or system) fonts as most other fonts aren’t supported by email clients (such as Outlook). In the case of Outlook, if a font other than an email safe font is used, it will replace the font with Times New Roman for your reader. As you can imagine, this can be really frustrating as it may significantly change the design or the feel of your email.

Here is a shortlist of email-safe fonts that are supported universally:

  • Arial
  • Arial Black
  • Comic Sans MS
  • Courier New
  • Georgia
  • Impact
  • Times New Roman
  • Trebuchet MS
  • Verdana

You may need to work with your graphic designer to choose the appropriate email safe fonts for use in email marketing that will work with your branding and style guide. Another thing to note is to keep the text easy on the eye. Not too big, not too small, and not too light. If reading becomes too hard, your reader will give up and delete it.

She likes it on top

Put your most important message, offer or call to action ‘above the fold’ or in the top area of the email that you can generally see without scrolling down.

This area gets a whopping 84% more attention than the rest of the email.

In fact, most people don’t read your emails (it sucks, I know!). They just skim over them, but they won’t even do that if what they initially see doesn’t pique their interest to scroll down. So put the most important stuff up the top!

Be out and proud

So you might think that using a pseudonym or quirky take on your nickname as your email is clever, but the reality is that if people don’t know who you are, then they won’t open your email. In a world full of spammers, everyone is cautious and rightly so.

Don’t be shy – use your branding and business name. Be consistent – use the same email address for all marketing correspondence and your readers will feel more comfortable.

Also, adding links to your social media profiles will help grab your reader’s attention.

Keep these best practices in mind for your next email campaign and it will save you some headaches later. As always, if just reading all this gives you a headache, then it might be best if you give Rodney a call on 1300 131 932 and he can sort out your email marketing for you.

You might also like:
10 Ideas for Automated Email Campaigns
More Deliverable Email