Improving Open Rates and Click Through Rates
Generally, the first time we speak to someone about their current email program, they express concern about their open rates and/or click through rates, so this week, we wanted to share with you the process we go through when we first consult someone on their email program.
1. Check your IP/domain reputation.
If you've got issues with either of these, then deliverabilty can be the root cause. You'll need to fix the underlying issue before moving on. In other words, if you're getting a lot of complaints, you'll need to address the behavior that's causing complaints. If you're hitting spam traps, you need to address your list collection practices. Check all domains used in your emails (from addresses, reply to addresses, tracking links, URLs, etc.)
2. Check your content.
Review the Troubleshooting Inbox placement process and make sure that the content is not an issue. Content issues can take many shapes from overall message content itself, to footer information, to from addresses, domains in your messages, HTML formatting, etc. Make sure this is not causing the problem.
3. List attrition.
Assuming that your reputation and your content are not causing deliverability issues, it's time to look at your overall email program. One of the biggest things to look at is list atrophy. Each list and industry are going to exhibit different behaviors, but if you're not growing your list by as much (or more) than you're losing each month, your open rates and click through rates are going to gradually decline as people hit the spam button or mark your messages as "junk".
4. List atrophy.
This is similar to attrition in that it impacts how people are/are not engaging with your content. These people are tuning out your messages or only looking at them every now and then. When someone first signs up for your list, they're highly engaged. Over time, however, they lose interest, gather more similar resources, etc. So even though they may not unsubscribe, they are likely to stop paying attention. To combat this, you should expect to be growing your list between 10%-30% . The percentage here depends on a number of factors. These are just averages across a variety of niches/markets.
Are you segmenting your list? I mean... really segmenting your list? This is not the same thing as having a few separate lists in a few different markets and then blasting out the same newsletter content/offers 5 days a week. It's about gathering data and sending relevant offers to segments of your list. It's about crafting a unique angle for different segments. For instance, if your list is a list about nutrition, you may have segments for Paleo, Gluten Free, etc. When promoting an offer, take time to show these various segments how the offer will benefit them. It takes more work, but it keeps people opening your emails and paying attention to what you have to say (and buying your products and services).
For over a decade Heather Seitz used email marketing to build successful companies and had to solve the biggest barrier to consistent profitability: deliverability. Today she is the Co-Founder and CEO of Email Delivered.
For more information on improving open rates and click through rates, and to stay on top of the best practices visit http://www.EmailDelivered.com/improving-open-rates-and-click-through-rates. Remember to sign up for the FREE Email Delivered Pulse newsletter for articles, tips, and recommended resources for email marketers.
How to Get Your Emails to the Inbox
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