Email campaign success depends upon subscriber engagement. You can analyze subscriber engagement by answering some simple questions: What time do your readers normally browse through their inboxes? When are they most likely to open and click? Do they read messages that are more than 12 hours old? GetResponse set out to answer these questions in our latest research on open-and-click times and came up with some interesting conclusions.
[Update January 2018]: If you’re looking for the latest data on the best time to send emails, check out the all new Email Marketing Benchmarks report.
We analyzed 21 million messages sent from US accounts during the 1st quarter of 2012 to determine top open and click-through times. We also analyzed the recipients’ top engagement times — all to test our thesis: sending times matter, and message results depend on reader engagement routines, not just a little but a lot.
One of the most important conclusions is that sending newsletters during readers’ top engagement times of 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. – 4 p.m. can increase their average open rates and CTR by 6%.
However, optimizing email marketing campaigns’ timing takes more than awareness of top engagement times. As our research points out, it’s a combination of many factors, including knowledge of time zone differences, your subscribers’ daily routines and the practices of other marketers. Find out more for yourself:
Highlights of the infographic:
- Emails have the best results within the 1st hour after delivery. This is when 23.63% of all emails are opened. But 24 hours after delivery, the average open rate is close to zero.
- Almost 40% of all messages are sent between 6 a.m. and noon. This can result in inbox clutter, and significantly decrease results for these emails.
- Messages sent in the early afternoon have a better chance of being noticed and consequently achieve better results: up to 10.61% open ratio and up to 2.38% CTR.
- Subscribers’ top engagement times are 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.- 4 p.m. with up to 6.8% average open rates and CTR.
As the research shows: to achieve best possible results, you should schedule delivery of your email taking into consideration the following:
- Emails reach the best results within 1 hour after landing in the inbox.
- If your recipients are occupied with other activities, they won’t be able to engage while it’s still fresh, and your message will be crowded out by more recent messages.
- To optimize the engagement rates for your message, you should schedule it to hit the inbox no later than 1 hour before the top open times, when its chances of getting noticed are the highest.
- If your email newsletters go to worldwide lists, make sure you use solutions that optimize delivery times in different time zones, such as GetResponse Time Travel.
Optimizing your email campaigns includes many factors, but the right timing is one of the most important success factors. The data points in the infographic are signposts, but remember that the best data you can get is your own metrics. Compare them to our general findings and let us know what times work best for you.