Email marketing best practices are efficient and cost effective to ensure that each email campaign reaches your target audience. However, suppose you're not implementing email marketing best practices correctly. In that case, you're likely not getting the most out of your email marketing campaigns.
This article outlines the 21 most effective email marketing best practices for 2022. You can create successful email campaigns that engage and convert your audience by following these email marketing tips. Let's get started!
The Importance of Email Marketing
Email marketing has stood the test of time. Despite significant innovations in the marketing sector, like the rise of social media marketing, email marketing is still considered one of the most reliable marketing options. It continues to be a core marketing channel for various businesses, organizations, and industries worldwide.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also significantly boosted different forms of digital marketing, including email marketing. Studies suggest that 89% of marketers use email marketing as the primary marketing strategy. It points to that all types of organizations, whether new or with a well-established customer base, should be familiar with the best email marketing practices to maximize their benefits.
Before discussing the most effective email marketing practices, let's discuss some critical benchmarks that you should achieve through email marketing.
Email Marketing Benchmarks
It is essential to analyze email marketing benchmarks because when you spend resources implementing email marketing best practices, you want to be sure they yield the intended results.
Moreover, the success of email marketing campaigns is directly associated with the organization's success and growth. Since most businesses and organizations are still recovering from economic uncertainty, it is essential to adjust email marketing strategies to the industry's changing conditions.
Following are the top 5 email marketing measurement benchmarks that every email marketing campaign should achieve:
1. Email Open Rate
Email open rate is the percentage of subscribers or readers who opened an email compared to the total number of your subscribers. Reputed researchers like Campaign Monitor and Smart Insights have presented reports that state that the global average email open rate is anywhere between 16% to 18%.
While the open email rate is undoubtedly a vital benchmark to determine the efficacy of email marketing campaigns, it should be noted that the overall performance of marketing strategies should be judged based on multiple metrics.
2. Email Click-to-Open Rate
The email click-to-open rate (CTOR) is another reliable metric to judge an email campaign's success. Determining whether an email created enough interest among the reader to take immediate action is critical. In other words, it is the percentage of subscribers who open an email and then visit the link or message placed within it.
CTOR is a valuable email marketing benchmark because it's used to evaluate the quality of a specific email and determine whether its overall design and messaging resonate with the email recipients. If the CTOR is low, it indicates that the email marketer has to modify their email marketing strategy.
3. Email Click Through Rate (CTR)
The email click-through rate is a useful benchmark representing how readers engage with your emails. It is fundamentally the number of subscribers who click on a button or image placed within the email out of the total number of emails. The primary difference between CTR and CTOR is that CTOR measures the number of people who open the email. At the same time, CTR directly depends on the total number of emails sent.
Businesses can significantly improve their CTR through email list segmentation, branding, and drafting captivating emails. The following section will thoroughly discuss these strategies to help you make the most of your email campaigns.
4. Unsubscribe Rate
It is understandable that not every subscriber will want to remain subscribed to your email list, so some email recipients will eventually choose to unsubscribe. In other words, an unsubscribe rate represents the number of people who think your emails are not engaging and valuable enough. However, as long as the unsubscribe rate is not too high, you should not get discouraged.
Generally, the percentage of people who unsubscribe can become disinterested due to various factors. It is good that they choose to unsubscribe from your email list because disengaged subscribers will only negatively impact the email list.
5. Bounce Rate
The bounce rate shows the number of emails that have ‘bounced' back to you instead of being delivered to the intended recipients. It means your email has not been sent to the target audience. Lowering the bounce rate is essential but primarily a factor of external controls you don't have insight into and won't be able to fix.
To determine its success and efficacy, you should analyze and monitor these five crucial email marketing metrics throughout an email campaign. Regular monitoring of these benchmarks and tweaking the email marketing strategies from time to time will help you gain your desired goal.
Keep reading to learn the best marketing practices and trends in 2022 to make your email campaigns successful and help build a strong brand.
21 Email Marketing Best Practices in 2022
Now, you know that email marketing is the primary part of any marketing campaign for different types of companies across all industries and sectors. However, managing an email campaign and making it successful can be challenging, especially when you are unfamiliar with the best practices of email marketing.
We've compiled a list of the 21 most effective email marketing best practices you should use to run successful email campaigns and achieve your business goals. Let's discuss these practices in detail.
1. Personalize the emails
Suppose you want to hold on to your subscribers and keep them interested in your business. In that case, you should focus on forging a personal connection. You can do it by personalizing the emails you send.
The good thing is that personalizing emails does not mean that you have to write hundreds of emails manually. Instead, you can use modern email marketing software like HubSpot to address the subscribers by name with the help of merge tags.
Below are some essential types of personalized emails that you can use to create a connection with every subscriber:
Abandoned Cart Emails
It is common for customers to get to the checkout point but not place the order by confirming the payment. In such a situation, you can send automated abandoned cart emails to website visitors to remind them that they have not placed the order.
You should collect your subscribers' birthdays through the email subscription forms and then surprise them on their birthday with some offer codes as a gift. This small gesture impresses the subscribers and potential customers to a great extent.
Website Browsing Emails
An efficient email marketing platform is well-integrated with your website. Therefore, if a visitor subscribes to your email and agrees to website cookies, you can start emailing them using automated campaigns based on their browsing history. For example, if you have an online store, you can use an automated email to send details about the products the user clicked on but did not buy.
2. Send a Welcome Email
Welcoming a new subscriber is as vital as personalizing emails. You should send a welcome email immediately after a customer subscribes to your emails. Many marketers underestimate the significance of a welcome email. Still, you should remember that such emails have an average open rate of over 86%, so you should fully utilize this opportunity to engage new subscribers and retain them.
It is pretty easy to automate a welcome email with the help of modern tools and technology. Still, you must ensure that the content of the email is relevant and appealing to new subscribers. Otherwise, there will be a risk that the new subscriber will lose interest in your organization.
Some critical email marketing tips to follow in a welcome email are:
- A welcome email is an effective way of building a brand and connecting with your subscriber, so you should introduce yourself, your organization, and the company's overall aim.
- Personalizing the welcome emails with your signature or personal picture will help you connect with your new subscriber.
- Send welcome emails consisting of a list of the most popular content, products, or services on your website to ensure the subscriber explores your website.
- Offer a discount or promotional offer on the first order to impress the newcomer.
By using these simple tips and tricks, you will be able to warmly welcome new subscribers and keep them engaged and interested in your business and organization.
3. Regularly Clean Your Email List
There is no doubt that creating and maintaining an extensive list of email subscribers is helpful for your business. Still, if the high subscriber count does not positively impact your business, you must reevaluate your strategy. Therefore, regularly cleaning the email list is crucial for the success of any email campaign. The following are two primary ways of cleaning the email list to keep list decay at bay.
Re-engage with Inactive Subscribers
There are various email marketing tools that you can use to identify inactive subscribers in your email list. Once you compile the list of inactive subscribers, your first step should be re-engaging them through a small email re-engagement campaign. You can also directly email them and ask whether they are interested in staying connected to your platform.
Remove the Inactive Subscribers
If you cannot re-engage the inactive subscribers, then there is no benefit to keeping them on your email list. They can harm the efficacy and metrics of your marketing campaign in the long run. Therefore, you should notify email subscribers that remain inactive after the re-engagement campaign.
Regularly cleaning the email list will help you maintain a list of active subscribers. Hence, it will enhance your chances of reaching potential customers and email clients through other email marketing best practices like personalizing emails.
4. Email List Segmentation
Understandably, different customers and subscribers have additional requirements. The best way to engage the customer is by delivering an email message that connects with their preferences. Therefore, you should focus on creating customer segments through email list segmentation strategies.
As the name suggests, segmentation divides an extensive email list into smaller, more targeted lists. It does not have to be a lengthy and challenging procedure. Instead, segmentation begins from the moment you get the subscribers' email.
Following are the fundamental metrics that you can use for efficient email list segmentation:
You should segment your email list based on demographic data like age, geographical location, and gender. It will significantly help you in targeted email marketing. For instance, if you sell clothing items, you can send different emails with specific product options to the suitable gender.
Users' interests play a critical role in browsing different websites and online stores. You should ask about the website visitor's interest during the sign-up process. You can use these interests to send relevant emails.
Segmenting an email list based on requested email frequency is highly important to ensure you are only sending emails per the users' request. Otherwise, if you create and send a lot of email content daily, it can end up annoying the subscriber. Therefore, you should ask them how frequently they want to receive your emails.
Website Activity and History
You can also segment your entire list based on the products or services an email subscriber visited on your website. Similarly, you can also use their purchase history to send follow-up emails or even promote some specific products.
Modern email marketing platforms make it much easier for email marketers to create email list segmentation quicker and easier through automation. For instance, email marketing best practices in HubSpot contains email list segmentation features to help your business grow with successful email marketing strategies.
Consistency in an email marketing strategy is critical for its success. You should decide the frequency and timing of sending the emails from the start of the campaign. Email marketing best practices in Mailchimp or other top software allow you to choose such factors based on your requirements quickly.
Generally, research shows that Fridays have the best open rates, whereas Saturdays have the worst available rates. You should evaluate the frequency and timing of the emails based on what works best with your subscribers and on different factors like the type of products and services you offer.
When drafting emails, your first focus should always be quality instead of quantity. Email marketing is a valuable tool, but you should not overdo it because sending too many emails is likely to annoy the recipients. Instead, you should start slow and see how the audience responds to your emails' frequency.
6. Use Triggered Messages
Suppose you want to keep your audience engaged and retain many subscribers. In that case, you should use the feature of sending trigger emails based on customers' behaviors. It can significantly improve the efficacy of your email marketing strategies by creating a personalized experience for the email recipients.
In other words, triggered emails are essential to engage with customers and provide them with relevant information at the perfect time when they need it. The primary goal of using triggered messages is to ensure that your customers take a specific action.
The entire concept of triggered email marketing revolves around delivering relevant information at the right time, so email marketing automation plays a vital role. You can fully understand the working of trigger emails by learning about its two main types:
These emails are triggered due to a user's action on your website or application at a specific time. For example, if you have an online store, customers will get a confirmation email whenever they buy a product.
Once you segment the email list according to certain conditions like interests or demographic attributes, segment-based emails can be triggered when the customer fits the set requirements.
Overall, triggered messages help retain existing customers by impressing them through quick action and providing relevant information at all times.
7. Optimize Your Email Marketing for Mobile Devices
The massive popularity of mobile devices and several other smart devices cannot be denied. Studies suggest that users of mobile phones make up 41.6% of email opens. This number is expected to keep increasing with time due to the increasing number of people who prefer mobile phones in this digital era.
You should focus on optimizing your email campaigns for smartphones because it is pretty easy to forget when drafting and editing emails on desktops. The best way to do it is by sending a test email and checking it on a mobile device to see how it renders.
When choosing email marketing software, you should choose a platform that offers responsive design email templates to enhance them on all device types, including mobile phones. An email template saves a lot of your time and effort. It makes it easier to gain more email engagement in a shorter duration.
8. Use Video and Images
Using videos and images to capture your readers' attention is an old trick that still works in making the email marketing campaign successful. Common characteristics of awesome and compelling emails involve offering great deals, exciting stories, and using attractive pictures and videos.
Experts have proven the benefits of adding images to emails by showing that emails with images have a CTR of 4.11%, whereas emails that only contain plain text have a CTR of 2.87%.
However, remember that it does not mean you have to make the entire email full of images. It can harm your marketing efforts. Instead, try to balance the usage of text and media in an email to keep the readers engaged.
9. Combine Email Marketing with Social Media Networks
The immense popularity of social media networks like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, provides you with a unique opportunity to reach more people globally and turn them into loyal customers.
Social media marketing is a core part of marketing digitally. You should integrate email marketing best practices within your social media marketing campaigns. This will ensure that your business or company gets promoted through various accounts and groups on social media platforms.
You should add the details of your social media profiles in your emails to ensure the readers have multiple options to reach out to you. Adding medial social buttons at the bottom of your email is a reliable cross-promotional effort that improves your overall branding and marketing.
Making email content as accessible as possible is vital because impairments like color blindness are much more common than many think. You do not have to make any significant changes to your email content; with slight modifications, it can become accessible to all readers.
You can follow these tips to achieve maximum accessibility in your emails:
- Always add descriptive alt text to the attached pictures.
- If you are using hyperlinks, you should avoid using generalized terms like ‘click here.' Instead, use meaningful and descriptive anchor text.
- Use dark font colors like black or gray because they make the content easier to read.
- Ensure that your emails are easily navigable with only a keyboard. It simply means that even if a user does not have a mouse, they can read your email without issue.
Ultimately, making your emails accessible will expand your audience and make the content more appealing and engaging for them. Therefore, you should follow the tips discussed above to reach this goal.
11. Reward Loyal Customers
Loyal customers are the backbone of any kind of business. These customers are the ones that open your emails, read them, and perform the required activities, such as buying a product. Therefore, you should reward your loyal customers for staying engaged.
There are numerous ways to reward your customers, such as offering special discounts, coupons, and access to exclusive services and products. It will make your customers feel special and keep them interested in your platform.
Some companies also launch a unique reward scheme for customers to incentivize them to buy more products. In the end, you should choose a suitable loyalty program as per the scale and type of your business.
12. Add Time-Sensitivity
Adding time sensitivity to your emails can make the customers take quick action due to fear of missing out. You can do this by setting a time limit in which a customer must take some action, like buying a product at a discounted rate.
It will increase the clicks and conversion rates because, typically, customers love checking out time-sensitive products and services. You should introduce urgency in your email subject lines to increase the open rate. For example, write, “Hurry, only TWO Hours Left!” or “Cost will go UP tomorrow!”.
Subject lines that combine proper wordings with relevant emojis will compel the customer to leap into action. Remember that you should avoid specific trigger words in a subject line.
13. Add a Compelling CTA
Email marketing is a reliable and effective way to inspire action through compelling call-to-actions (CTAs). You should always add a CTA button to all your emails to make it clear to the reader what you expect them to do.
Generally, the CTA text should be concise, having one to five words. Similarly, the CTA button must stand out from the rest of the design and content of the email to ensure the button is visible to the reader.
Once you have designed a compelling CTA and email, you should monitor the click-through rates on the CTA to determine whether you are using effective messaging. If the click-through rate is low, you should tweak the CTA to make it more compelling and engage more readers.
14. Be Creative with Your Subject Lines
Most users decide whether they want to read an email based on the email subject line. Even if you have spent a lot of time and energy crafting a perfect email, it will only matter if a subscriber opens it. Therefore, you must create a unique, creative, attractive headline that catches the reader's eye in their overcrowded inbox.
It would be best to avoid common tricks like using all caps, too many exclamation marks, or excessive emojis. Readers are smart enough to see through these types of emails. You can create a great subject line by thinking like a reader. It should be a concise line that commands attention and build enough intrigue among the reader that they want to open the email.
Keeping the subject line short is essential because various email platforms have a specific character limit. Additionally, lengthy subject lines might not be optimized for smartphones, so try to say more with fewer words.
Adding a sense of urgency to the subject line is also an effective way of compelling the reader to open the email. For example, suppose you are offering special discounts. In that case, you should let the readers know about it directly through the subject line. Avoid spam traps by not using common trigger words blocked by your email provider.
15. Make Emails Easy-to-Read
Making emails easy to read is a fundamental marketing strategy you should consider as an email marketing best practice. Generally, people do not read every single word of an email. The typical reading pattern involves focusing on the upper part of a text and then vertical scrolling. Therefore, your marketing emails should be easy to skim through for the readers.
Use the following tips to facilitate the readers by making the emails easy to read:
- Keep the paragraphs short by focusing on one idea per paragraph and making them clear and concise.
- Provide information in bullet points and lists to ensure the readers can quickly skim through the emails.
- You should use catchy headings to divide the email into appropriate sections if you send a longer email.
- Add videos, media, and other relevant content to catch the reader's attention and add a break in plain text.
- Highlight the information that you want the user to focus on.
- Use white space to ensure the overall email flow properly and make it easier for the readers to skim the text.
- Add attractive and clear CTA buttons to provide the reader knows what you expect them to do.
These essential yet highly effective tips will significantly improve the quality of your email and make it easier to read. As a result, you will be able to get your message across quickly and easily to the readers.
16. Use a Suitable Tone
Understandably, every business wants to approach its customers, both existing and potential ones, formally and professionally and build its brand voice. However, it does not mean that your emails must be cold and impersonal. Instead, you should focus on making your emails casual and conversational to ensure the reader is kept engaged and interested in what you have to offer.
You can quickly adapt a unified brand voice to your email by using the following tips:
Use Simple Language
Even if someone has subscribed to your email list to get information from experts, it does not mean you have to use complex language. Instead, you should opt for simple language understood by every kind of reader, including the ones whose first language might not be English. It will make your brand more inclusive and appealing.
Every industry has varying jargon and acronyms, but your readers don't need to be familiar with them. Hence, you should not send subscribers any jargon or acronyms in your email in the first place. Write the acronyms in complete form and use common terminologies so that everyone can understand the content of the email.
You can adopt a conversational tone by thinking of drafting emails as advising a friend or family member. In other words, you should be direct and casual in writing the emails to ensure you can convey your message directly in a natural language.
Following these simple tips will boost the appeal of your email and increase its chances of being read by the targeted audience instead of getting deleted or archived by users.
17. Avoid No-Reply Emails
Email marketing best practices help you build a strong relationship with your subscribers. The email address you use to communicate with the readers affects the overall quality of the email campaigns.
Many organizations and even large-scale businesses use a no-reply email address because it is time-saving and easy to implement through email marketing platforms. However, suppose you want to follow the most effective email marketing best practice in 2022. In that case, you should stop using a no-reply email address and adopt a valid email address.
As the name suggests, a no-reply email address cannot receive incoming emails. It is suitable for transaction-related emails like shipping details, password resets, and other such situations. However, you should avoid using them for subscription-based emails.
A valid email address can receive incoming emails and should be used when you want people to subscribe to your email list. Setting up a valid email address is important because you should regularly check your inbox and respond to the subscribers.
18. Use Double Opt-In
Double opt-in means that whenever a subscriber signs up for your email list, you provide them with a link to confirm the subscription. Using a double opt-in is one of the best email marketing practices that has been around for a long time. It is still effective in verifying the subscriber's email address. It has a positive impact on email deliverability.
A single opt-in does not provide you with much information about the user. In contrast, a double opt-in is essential in collecting the email addresses through a single additional verification step. It also prevents fake registration and ensures the compliance of marketing techniques with anti-spam rules.
Generally, the double opt-in procedure involves the following three steps:
- A user visits the website and completes the registration form on the landing page.
- The user gets an email to confirm their registration to the email list.
- Once the user confirms registration, they will become part of the email list.
Email marketing software like Mailchimp and ActiveCampaign allows you to easily enable double opt-in to maintain high standards of an email list. Overall, this strategy helps create a list of engaged users with a high email open rate.
19. Add Share Options
Adding share options in your emails to ensure the email client can easily share your dynamic content with friends, family, and social media followers. Forwarding emails is a traditional way of sharing emails. Still, you can also prompt the reader to share the content through multiple share options that can be provided in an email.
For example, email marketing best practices of Mailchimp involve offering various share options adding campaign URL links, and social media networks (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) share buttons. It can significantly improve your marketing campaigns because good word-of-mouth is a powerful tool to establish a successful business by reaching more people.
Ultimately, more sharing options means a greater chance that the reader will share your content.
As a result, your company increases its brand exposure, and your brand's awareness brings more interested people to your website.
20. Rely on Analytics
As discussed previously, the purpose of recording and maintaining email marketing benchmarks is to ensure the effectiveness and success of email marketing campaigns. You can use these analytics collected by various tracking tools to make intelligent data-driven decisions and tweak email marketing strategies accordingly.
Pay close attention to the metrics to adjust the frequency and timing of email sending. It will help you in boosting engagement with your readers. Some of the most important metrics to analyze and monitor are:
Open rate to ensure the email's subject line is compelling enough for the subscriber to open the email. You can also collect data to determine how many customers are with your promotional email and your landing pages.
CTR to determine whether the email's content and the overall message resonate with the readers enough to make them take some action. Track CTR to see how many subscribers subscribe to your other marketing channels like social media and your website.
The number of people unsubscribing from the email list and new sign-up is required to determine the overall progress and efficacy of the email marketing campaign.
Analyzing and comparing different email marketing benchmarks is critical for performance. You want to see how well the email marketing strategy works and what changes should be made to get better results. As long as the metrics are improving, even if slightly, you should be confident that you have implemented the email marketing best practices and that they are working.
21. Easy to Unsubscribe
It is possible that despite using all of the best email marketing practices, a user might not be interested in your emails or the kind of content you offer. In such situations, you must make peace that engaging and exciting every subscriber on your email list is impossible.
Many people will always keep subscribing and unsubscribing from your email list. Adding an unsubscribe button is very helpful for the subscribers to opt out of your email list quickly. An engaged audience only receives customer engagement increases as your marketing emails.
Therefore, you should remember that having many subscribers on the list does not guarantee success because unengaged readers are not helpful. Some companies make the mistake of not providing any unsubscribe option for readers.
This practice creates even more frustration among subscribers. The best way to give an opt-out option is to add an unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email. It is a good idea to add options to the landing page of the unsubscribe link to know why they are unsubscribing.
Email Marketing Best Practices Wrap-up
The bottom line is that modern tools and technologies have paved the path for many email marketing best practices to evolve with further advancements. Despite a wide range of marketing strategies entering the industry, email marketing has remained a prominent and influential way of converting new customers and establishing a loyal customer base.
The goal of discussing these various email marketing best practices is to help you design a comprehensive email marketing campaign and use all of the reliable, effective. Affordable tips and tricks to make the campaign successful. Solidifying your email marketing strategy can take some time. Still, you can achieve it by fully understanding these email marketing trends and putting these practices into actual implementation.