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Email marketing: the best time to send

11 April 2017

We are still trying to find the keys to getting the best results from our email marketing campaigns. We already talked about the importance of carefully choosing the subject lines of emails and today we are looking at another area that you have to take into account if you want to increase your open rates: the best time to send your communications.

Studies keep emerging that are trying to identify the best days and times to send commercial emails: most of them agree that, generally, the open rates are highest on Tuesdays, while Saturdays and Sundays are the days when they are lowest. Regarding the time, from first thing in the morning to 11 am seems to be the most successful period.

Additionally, according to marketing experts, an email is most likely to be opened within an hour of reaching someone’s inbox. After 24 hours, the percentage drops to 1%.

But careful! A higher open rate does not necessarily mean a higher click rate. In fact, the click rate increases on Fridays and the weekend, when we tend to pay closer attention to our emails, especially if we are looking for suggestions about what to do with our leisure time during those days.

Timing is changing

These key points can help to guide us to improve our results, but we have to bear in mind that reading and opening habits are changing. Desktop computers used to be king when it came to checking emails, and most were opened during working hours. But an increasing number of emails are being opened from various mobile devices (smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc.), meaning that users are active for more hours during the day. In fact, most online purchases are made outside working hours, for example.

Additionally, when we talk about commercial emails, we should consider that they can be sent to users from various countries, so the hours may vary according to the time zone.

Things are getting complicated. So, what should you do to ensure that your communications don’t end up in a long inbox queue? Well, try and experiment, because being successful depends largely on the sector and the profile of your recipients. Sending bulk emails is not good! We have to study how our customers behave, configure our mailing lists properly and customise the schedule for sending emails. This is the only way to hit on the right formula for making sure that each user receives the relevant information at the right time.

A/B testing is a really useful tool; but that’s a subject for another article…

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