According to a new survey, more than 1,000 email users found that the longer an email’s subject line and body length, the lower the click-through rate.
The “Science of Email 2014” report, by HubSpot and Litmus, analyzed self-reported trends among users as well as observational data (measuring what users are actually doing when they open an email) to determine what makes for successful email marketing.
By measuring and comparing self-reported and observational data, the study illustrated discrepancies among commonly held email marketing beliefs. For example, the report found that while email users report that they prefer image-based to text-based emails, click-through rates0 dropped as the number of images in an email increased (this could be attributed to load times).
Other key findings:
- The best time to send an email? When everyone else isn’t. The authors termed this “contra-competitive” timing. To prevent your emails from getting lost in people’s inboxes every weekday, try sending email over the weekend, for example. Yet, because email timing is still not an exact science, the authors suggested experimenting with what works best for your audience.
- More people are using filters. Fifty-four percent of email users reported using a filter to automatically sort their mail, and more than 50 percent use a separate spam filter to divert commercial emails. As email users become savvier about avoiding unwanted email, marketers, too, must become more sophisticated at delivering email that users want, the report noted.