Let’s go over some quick email marketing best practices you should incorporate into your campaigns.

Mobile

  • Over 50% of emails are opened on mobile, so ensure your emails are mobile optimized.
  • Use a mobile-first email template. This will make sure that your emails look good in most email clients.
  • Go beyond the email. Ensure that your landing pages are relevant and mobile optimized too.

Email design and code

  • Keep your emails to 600 pixels wide max.
  • Limit your email’s HTML weight to under 102KB of code (excluding images). If you go above this limit, Gmail will truncate your email.
  • When creating your email templates, use a tool such as Litmus to make sure your emails look good on most email clients.
  • Compress your images. Nobody wants to have to open heavy images, especially when on a mobile device.

Content

  • Use images to complement your email’s content, but don’t include just one large image. If a subscriber has images blocked by default, they’ll see an empty-looking email.
  • Make sure all images are clickable.
  • Diversify your email content between high-value emails and promotions. A good guiding principle is the JJJRH model.
  • Add personality to your emails with gifs and emojis.
  • Personalize emails based on explicit user preferences and implicit, on-site behavior. The more relevant your emails, the better.
  • Send trigger-based emails, depending on the actions (or lack thereof) that users take on your website or app (e.g., cart abandonment email series.)
  • Make sure your pre-header text complements your subject line.
  • Send your emails from a recognizable “from” name.
  • Allow subscribers (and encourage them) to respond to your emails. Don’t use noreply@ email address. If out of office notices are a problem, add an auto-filter for these.
  • Use low-friction CTAs that visually stand out. If you can, couple this with an incentive, which will maximize click rate.

Strategy

  • Focus on relevancy over frequency. Imagine that you’re about to receive the email you’re drafting. Would you be excited to receive this? If the answer is no, go back to the drawing board.
  • It’s okay to use promotions and discounts, but don’t abuse them; otherwise, subscribers won’t ever purchase at full price.
  • Segment your list for added relevancy. If you’re in fashion, male vs. female is a good start. Time zone–specific sending is also another great option.
  • Test the heck out of your emails. Content, time of send, sender name, and frequency. Understand what resonates with your audience.
  • Review your email drips every 6 months. Your understanding of your subscribers will evolve over time. Incorporate these learnings into each revision.
  • If you have an inbound team, sync with them and leverage the great content they’re creating.
  • When looking at data, go all the way down your funnel, from email open rate to purchase.
  • Send a welcome/confirmation email. Make sure it includes one clear next step the subscriber should take.

Highest-value emails

If you’re looking for high-value, low-hanging fruits, here they are.

  • Shopping cart abandonment
  • Browse abandonment
  • Replenishment series
  • Back-in-stock announcement
  • Expiring credit card—give customers a heads-up before their credit card expires; follow up once a credit card has expired

Churn follow-up—when a customer cancels, stay in touch with them