If your emails aren’t getting opened and read, it may be that your timing is off. Small business email marketing provider GetResponse analyzed 21 million messages sent from U.S. accounts in the first quarter of the year and came up with some interesting insight into the top open and click-through times and recipients’ top engagement times. They found out that what time you send an email matters.  

Here are the key findings of the GetResponse analysis:

  • Between 6 a.m. and noon is the heaviest time for email traffic. That’s when nearly 40 percent of all email messages are sent. As a result, messages sent in the early afternoon have a better chance of being noticed, opened and clicked.
  • Email subscribers’ top open times are 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. with a 6.8 percent average open and click through rate (CTR).
  • The first hour after delivery is the best for email opens. Nearly 24 percent of all email opens occur then. The figure drops down by half within the second hour and 30 percent within the third hour. By 24 hours after delivery, the average open rate is zero.

Still even with these conclusions, GetResponse suggests that the best data is always your own. Track and compare the open and CTR findings of your small business email campaigns to find out works.

Timing isn’t everything

When you send your email matters; but there’s more to a successful campaign than time of day. Here are a few other tips to keep in mind as you plan a campaign:

Powerful subject lines: Your subject line needs to stand out to motivate the reader to open it. Keep your subject line short – less than 50 characters is optimal – and to the point. Tell your readers what your message is about.

Inject your personality: Connect with your customers. Instead of a marketing and sales pitch, use language that tells your customers something about you. Consider your message as a conversation opener.

Leverage the platform: Your message may be read on a desktop but it’s just as likely to be opened on a smartphone or tablet. Think about how your message will be delivered and displayed across a variety of devices and optimize it accordingly. For example, consider how you can leverage mobile device touchscreens.

Branding: Your email marketing should be consistent with your online presence in social media, content marketing and advertising as well as your offline marketing activities. The look and feel and messaging should support your overall brand identity.

Call to action: Make sure your email has a call to action (see: Write a call to action that clicks with your customer) that is clear and inspires a click through: download now, subscribe today or buy now.

What have you learned about timing in your own email campaigns? Does it support what GetReponse concludes?