Marketing Pilgrim's "Email Marketing" Channel

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Email Clickthrough Rates Slip as Mobile Opens Rise



Most mornings, I begin my day by reading my email on my iPad. I give it a general perusal, delete the trash before it hits my Outlook inbox and formulate a plan for the day based on what I find there. It’s a relaxed way to ease into the day and for some reason 50 emails don’t look as daunting on the iPad as they do flooding into my computer.

For many others, mobile is a way of dealing with email on the go. Whether traveling for business or killing time between errands, mobile has made emailing an even bigger part of our daily lives. So much so that this past April, mobile eclipsed both web and computer as the top means of accessing email.

eMarketer says there’s a downside, though email opens have risen over the past year, email clickthroughs have declined. They suggest that part of the problem is the lack of mobile-optimized emails.

My unscientific study came to the same conclusion. I get dozens of emails a day that can’t be read on my iPad. A portion include an HTML link that I have to clickthrough in order to reach a web landing page. Others are just a messy mass of code. I rarely try to read emails on my iPhone, but I imagine the problems there would be increased by the decreased size of the screen.

The problem lies in the fact that some years ago, we learned how to make emails sing, dance and dazzle us with pretty pictures and interactive links. For mobile, we need to go back to basics. A simple email that gives me the information without the flash is more likely to get my attention than a big blank space that says Click Here to View Online.

In the end, though, it’s really all about delivering helpful content. Stripped down or flashy, if I don’t care about what you’re sending me, it’s not going to matter. So maybe it’s not the low percentage of mobile-optimized emails that is the problem, maybe it’s just the overwhelming deluge of meaningless chatter that falls into email boxes everyday that’s keeping us from clicking.

You can’t stop your competitors from sending junk, but you can carefully write and target your emails so the person on the other end wants to clickthrough instead of click to delete.