Mobile email marketing best practices

A study by ReturnPath revealed that mobile email open rates increased by 34% in 2011. Comparatively, desktop open rates dropped on average by 9.5% and via webmail access by 11%.

A study by ReturnPath revealed that mobile email open rates increased by 34% in the second half of 2011. Comparatively, desktop open rates dropped on average by 9.5% and via webmail access by 11%. Optimizing email for mobile has never been more important.

1. Messaging has never been so important

According to MarketingSherpa the average mobile wielding email reader will only spend 15 to 20 seconds looking at your email, and that’s presuming it’s even opened. Ensure that from names are as effective as possible, subject lines are relevant your call-to-actions are compelling.

Mobile users won’t want to scroll to find the important parts of the email, so put key messages as high up as possible and make sure it’s all easily readable from mobile email clients.

2. Preferred frequency is different for mobile readers

Whilst an email every week may be seen as spam from someone trying to focus on their excel sheets in the office, this frequency may not be so intrusive to a mobile user. Sitting on the tube, casually browsing emails at lunch or simply checking work emails on a Wednesday evening, mobile open rates may vary from desktop opens.

Test the frequency of emails for mobile users and compare against desktop. Once you know the frequency, monitor it’s performance and make changes if you have to.

3. Be responsive – Mobile focused email design

It may be that your desktop friendly emails look fine in iOS Mail, but more often than not they can be improved with mobile readers in mind. Focus on making emails readable (font size, columns, fixed table widths) and presenting your messaging as early on as possible.

H1 and H2 tags are useful in mobile optimized emails in order to give the mobile email client a good understanding of the email, and ALT tags are arguably even more important in mobile emails than on desktop (Although important for both).

Call-to-actions should be easily clickable without needing to zoom in or scroll down, and ensure they link through to mobile-friendly landing pages.

John Alexander Rowley

An enthusiastic digital marketing professional passionately dedicated to increasing the online presence of businesses and individuals in order to improve engagement and ROI.

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