Email Marketing Click-Through Rate Optimization

What is an email click-through rate?

Did you know that an average of 144 billion emails is sent every day? It’s no wonder that email marketing is one of the most effective channels for developing relationships with customers, both old and new. However, merely sending the email isn’t enough. The average person gets tons of emails every day. The first hurdle is to get them to open the email. Once you do that, there’s another crucial step that they need to make – clicking your link. And that’s the most challenging thing in email marketing. In order for your email marketing campaign to succeed, you need to get a good email click-through rate.

Before we begin to discuss that, let’s first make sure we’re all on the same page regarding what an email click-through rate is. The CTR is the number of subscribers who have clicked on a hyperlink, CTA, or image in your email campaign at least once. You can calculate this by getting the number of people who have clicked on your email campaign and dividing it with the number of emails you have sent. For example, if you have 10 people who opened your email and 4 of them clicked on a link inside your campaign, then your click-through rate is 40%.

What is a good CTR for email?

Obviously, a high click-through rate means that your subscribers find your email campaign to be relevant to them and they’re taking the action you want. A low click-through rate, on the other hand, means that there are adjustments that need to be done to make your email campaign effective. So, what is a healthy CTR? It depends. As of March 2019, the general average click-through rate is 7%. But if you really want to find out how effective your campaign is, you need to know what the average CTR is in your industry. For example, according to Constant Contact, the average CTR of the automotive services industry is 9.46% while the average CTR of the transportation industry is a whopping 16.75%. If your CTR is above the industry average, then kudos to you. But if it is just at average or even below average, you may need to optimize your emails to get more click-throughs.

How can you increase Email Marketing Click-Through Rate?

Now, there are several factors that can affect your click-through rate which includes the day and time you sent the email, the position of the link, the subject line, etc. To effectively increase your email marketing click-through rate, you’ll need to make sure that you optimize your emails as much as possible.

Optimize for mobile.

According to Adestra, 59% of all email opens were made on mobile devices in 2018. In fact, around 3 out of 5 consumers check their email on the go and 75% of them utilize their smartphones to do so.

Top 10 Email Clients

Here’s a more startling fact: 70% of users delete an email that hasn’t been optimized for mobile. This means, if your email campaign is not readable in a mobile device, your reader will most likely delete it. And you can’t get them to click on your link if they don’t read your email in the first place. To make sure that your email is readable on any device, you need to get on board with responsive design. This enables you to get click-throughs from both desktops and mobile. In fact, based on a study conducted by MailChimp, responsive design increases the unique clicks made by mobile users by 15%. It also resulted in an increase in total links across all devices – desktop, mobile, and tablet.

Fix your email length and wording.

Attention spans are short. No one wants to read a lengthy email unless he has to. After all, there are loads of other emails to get through. Aside from needing to be catchy, you need to make sure that your email isn’t bogged down by too many words and too much information. The recommended length is between 50 to 150 words. In addition, stay away from using sophisticated words. These can reduce the readability of your email. Short sentences using 3rd grade English works best.

Email sending frequency – find the perfect balance.

When you’re sending out emails to your customers, you have to find the sweet spot between staying top-of-mind and becoming spam-like. You don’t want to send too few emails and miss out on opportunities to boost engagement and sales. You also don’t want to send too many and cause your customers to unsubscribe and mark you as spam. The rule of thumb is to only send emails to your customers that they would find relevant or valuable. A lot of marketers send 1 to 5 emails a month with most of them sticking between 2 to 3 emails.

Stick to one call-to-action

Some people think that including multiple calls to action (CTA) will increase your chances of getting a click-through. The more options, the better, right? Well, not in this case. Too many CTAs can confuse and/or distract your subscribers. If they’re unsure what to do, it can decrease the CTR of your emails. If you want to get those click-throughs, you need to limit your CTA to just one. A good example is Whirlpool. According to a case study published in Marketing Sherpa, they were able to achieve a 42% increase in their CTR just by limiting themselves to a single, focused CTA.

Segment your emails for a better click-trough rate

Different strokes for different folks. You should always keep this in mind when creating email marketing campaigns. Your subscribers are people who have differing interests. You can’t send one email to every one of them and expect great things. More likely, your CTR will go down and they’ll start unsubscribing, which will definitely affect your sender reputation. This is because you aren’t sending them relevant content. If you want to provide value to your customers, you need to segment your list. Tailor your emails and send them to those who you think might be interested based on their demographics and personal information. You’ll get higher click-through rates if you send the right email to the right person.

Achieve Higher CTR using Email Hygiene, Email Validation, and Verification

We’ve already discussed numerous ways you can boost the CTR of your email marketing campaign. So, what’s with this section. Well, the reason why we wanted to have a separate discussion about this is that it affects a crucial step in your campaign. Before you can “push” your subscribers to click on your link, you have to make sure that they get the email first. And that involves email hygiene. No, we’re not talking about clean emails. We’re talking about your email list. If your list contains invalid email addresses, ones that are no longer active or have typos, there’s a good chance that your sender reputation will suffer. ISPs may blacklist your email address which affects your deliverability. Your emails may get delivered straight to spam or, worse, it never gets delivered at all. If you want to make sure that your email lands in your customer’s inbox, you need to build and maintain a clean email list. A surefire and easy way to do that is to use an email validation and verification service. Once you have a clean list, you’ve already got your foot in the door.

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