One of the biggest and most important questions that many marketers ask is when is the best time to send out emails to customers? Well, the truth is there is no one correct answer to this question. In spite the fact that there are tons of resources available online on what they think is the best time to send email messages, one of the key pillars to unlocking this dilemma is understanding the behavior of your target audience. According to a survey, over 44% of consumers in both the U.S. and Canada check their emails 1-3 times a day. This makes emailing the preferred means of communication by brands in order to cover a good proportion of their customer base.
Just like brand advertisements on television, there are usually prime times when adverts air and reach a wider audience. In the same way, our main aim is to address exactly what the prime time during the day and evenings that your target market read their emails. Knowing the best time to send emails to customers plays a central role in helping you carefully draft an email campaign that goes straight into their inboxes and stands a chance of being read!
Once you have managed to get the email message to your customer’s inbox, is it guaranteed that they will read it? Well, the answer is No! Most clients are inclined to reading emails that have a catchy subject line like those with discounts or free offers. The best way to get your prospective client to read your campaign is to leverage their data well. This could be their demographic, purchase history among other key pointers.
Statistics on what the best time for customers to send emails is: what savvy marketers do:
The best times to send emails to customers often revolve around five key questions, what kind of sender are you? who is your target audience? when are your targets likely to be active online? And what clues do you already possess?
According to basic statistics, there is a great difference in time that different demographics consume email campaigns. For instance, young customers between the age of 18-34 are highly likely to read their emails throughout the day. Actually, two-thirds of them say that they check their emails while watching TV and while in bed! So what happens to the one-third? These are mainly baby boomers you wouldn’t want to lock them out.
To have your emails catchy and worth the read, you might want to;
Most companies prefer sending out their emails between 6 am and noontime, hence, representing about 39 % of all companies. On the other hand, about 30% of companies send out their email campaigns between 6 pm and midnight. This means that if there are 10 companies that have sent their emails during these times, there will be 10 email messages waiting for the client to read when they open their inbox. Chances of them actually clicking to read these emails is very low especially when they have other work-related emails that are more important.
Personally, when I have all these e-commerce emails and many work-related emails to catch up with, I simply mass delete them! My advice is for you to be different! Send out your email at times when most companies are not. You could consider early afternoons just after people get back from their lunch break or early evenings when people arrive home from work. This way, your email stands out in your client’s inbox and hence, standing a high chance of being read along with other important emails.
Pay attention to time zones when sending out emails:
Most of your subscribers or prospective clients come from different time zones. The best thing to do is to group people in your mailing list based on their time zones. This plays a very central role in helping you ensure that you are not sending out emails outside clients’ optimal times. The whole idea of determining the best time to send emails to customers is just so that you can optimally cover your customer base. You may be wondering, but how do I know my clients’ time zone? Well, you can do this using stringent IP address locators, use their last shipping addresses or billing address. Alternatively, if you could just ask them. You will be surprised how prospective customers are sometimes willing to provide information with the idea that you are out to make their lives much easier. You do not want to send email campaigns to someone who is in the middle of their sleep or is getting ready early in the morning to rush to work, right?
Send out emails to customers during work hours:
You may not be able to access work emails of most prospective clients, but you can have access to their personal emails. During work hours, employees tend to often check their personal emails as well during their free moments. With the two points mentioned above in mind, employees read their emails soon after lunch breaks and before they leave for the day or even soon after they arrive home. Leverage these hours and you realize how your sales dramatically increase!
Believe you me, people check their emails during weekends. There are many times when I have written emails to people during weekends just so that I don’t forget sending them out without even expecting a response, but to my surprise, I get responses to almost 75 % of emails I send during weekends. It is quite unfortunate that most companies still consider this time a bad time. However, in the spirit of being different, you can decide to reach your customers during this time. Based on a survey by Experian, the volume of emails sent during the weekends significantly plummets, but the rate of opening the emails significantly high!
Also, of importance is the fact that many people have smartphones and use it to catch up with their emails when they are not in front of their computers. Ensure that you customize your emails for mobile handsets and you will be sure to have greater success!
Conduct A/B testing:
There are so many statistical analysis all over the internet on what the best time to send emails to customers is. However, the best time for your company lies in your available data. The easiest and effective thing you can do is to gather your data and test your theories yourself. You can create segmented lists of prospective clients and assign each list a day and time to send out emails. This way, you will discover valuable information for your company first hand. One of the truths that most companies do not like hearing is that the truth lies in experimenting! Even when you think that you have the best time to send emails to customers all figured out, change factors here and there and test them again and again. This way, you will have a greater and novel insight that you can apply to boost your success rate.
Factors to consider when choosing the best time to send emails to customers:
There are so many factors that we have already discussed above based on what we already know from statistics or what we can discover experimentally. However, there are targeted factors that you can leverage in determining what the best time to send emails to customers is. Some of these factors include;
Did you know that company trends are a great starting point in helping you determine the best time to send emails to customers? By analyzing your customer email results, you can collect specific data that will help you know where you stand. You will notice that one of the best times would be weekends when and very early Monday mornings when the customers schedule is not all full of work commitments.
Think of your audience:
What would your audience need from your company? If you are running a Hotel, or B&B’s, the truth is that most clients would likely be making plans/reservations for their weekend getaways during the middle of the week such as Wednesdays and Thursdays. If your target audience are religious groups, then they are likely to make plans on Thursdays for upcoming services. Understanding your client’s needs and aligning them to the services that your company offers plays a key role in helping you deduce what the best time to send emails is. Get to know what your audience’s routines are like. Also, take advantage of the fact that people use their mobile phones to check their emails whenever and wherever they are. Take a look at your data and let that guide you rather than relying so much on speculations.
Think of your email campaign:
What would you want to achieve with your email campaigns? Are you just interested in sending out 5,000 emails every day with no one opening them? When you have your aim and goals set right, then you will be motivated to working towards achieving them. This means that you have to ensure that you have timely messages in your prospective customer’s inbox for you to reap the best results.
If your restaurant is running a pizza special on Tuesday, you can experiment by sending out emails to customers on Monday and reminder emails early Tuesday morning. You could also make offers on the first 10 customers or something like that. Truth be told, many of your subscribers will automatically jump on that opportunity and those that miss out have a high chance of coming in the following week. The trick here is to align your goal with the needs of your clients. You can capture this on the subject line. Ensure that you have the day included to create a strong sense of urgency.
Expectations, expectations, expectations!
Once you have established what the needs of your clients are and what you have to offer, the best thing is to create a sense of expectation in your clientele. What do I mean? Well, so you are offering a free pizza for a large pizza purchase on Tuesdays, right? The best way to notify them is choosing the appropriate time and sticking to it. What this does is that your contacts will always look out for your emails on the same. You can also add small forms that they can use to sign up along with the next time they expect to hear from you. All you have to do is to keep that promise and boom! You got them!
One last word:
We have already discussed a couple of key pointers that will help you get to know the best time to send emails to your customers. Just as a recap, it is important for you to always pay attention to the demographics of your target audience. This will help you understand their needs and habits and hence determining their click-through rate. The next pointer is your niche as a marketer. This way, you can determine who your target audience are and how their routines fit well with your campaign. Alternatively, it is important for you to determine the season and location of your target audience. This way, you customize your email send times to fit well with their time zones.
an other words, what am trying to tell you for sure is that there is no one-size-fits-all response to this question. Therefore, for you to find out what works best for you, weigh all the factors we have discussed coupled with A/B tests and repeat your tests over and over changing a few variables every time to make sure that you are always taking advantage of valuable information you collect to boost success.
Determining the best time to send emails to customers is one question with no one right answer to it. However, in whatever you do, it is important that you ensure that you customize your emailing to reach your customers at the right time and place. Unlike other marketing channels, one thing you should be happy about is the fact that you are sending emails directly to a place that is frequented by your prospective clients- their inbox. If you put all the factors we have discussed into perspective, you are assured of scaling new heights of success.