You’ve probably wondered – more than once or twice – what would be the best time to send a marketing email. When thinking about communicating with their audience, marketers often focus more on the content and less on the timing of their marketing emails.
“You’ve created a product/service that’s pure genius. But, to make sure people know about it, your timing has to be perfect.” – EmailOut
Crafting the perfect marketing email that suits your subscribers’ preferences, activities, location and interests as well as ensuring its responsiveness on different devices can be a Herculean task. That’s why some marketers don’t even bother and why subscribers are getting emails at all times during the day – and night (like a 3 a.m. “we haven’t seen you in a while” blast). So, we’d like to shed some light about when would be the best time to send emails to your audience.
In this article, we’ll answer the following questions about the best time to send emails:
- What day of the week is best for your email blast?
- Should you send your emails during daytime or nighttime?
- How to establish what time is best for you?
Ready to dig in?
You’ve most certainly heard the phrase “Timing is everything!”, right? Well, when it comes to email marketing, it might not be everything but it’s definitely essential if your goal is to have recipients notice and engage with your email campaigns – and achieve higher ROI, of course.
Now – and in the days to come – it would only get harder and harder to catch the attention of consumers. Why? Because they get bombarded with tons of emails every single day. Most of them won’t even give them a second glance. They’ll either delete them or, even worse, report the sender as a spammer and cause a whole lot of issues you wouldn’t want. If you want to avoid such fate, don’t rely only on what you send. Focus on when you’re sending it too.
The Contradictions and Truths About Email Marketing Research Data
Have you ever Googled “best time to send emails”? If you did, you most definitely noticed there’s tons of information and contradictory opinions on the matter.
Studies conducted by numerous email industry experts and ESPs give recommendations that are not always applicable to all marketers. So, rather than providing a clear and practical solution, such a simple search can result in even more confusion.
The reason for such conflicting results is actually quite simple – different studies are focused on different variables. Some are based on B2B email blasts, others on B2C ones and with each variable comes even more factors to consider like target audience, buyer behaviour, location, your overall goal, etc.
Here is a roundup of what some of the numerous studies show –
a) the best results from your email blast happen within the first hour after delivery;
b) within the first hour after delivery you can reach around 24% open rate;
c) 40% of marketing emails are sent between 6 a.m. and noon;
d) if you send email messages in the early afternoon the chances of them being noticed are higher – up to 6% open rate and 2.4% CTR;
e) top engagement times for subscribers are 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. – 4 p.m. with an average increase of both CTR and open rate up to 7%;
f) the best time to send an email blast is Thursday between 8-9 a.m., whilst a different study states Thursday is considered the worst day for open rates;
g) the worst time for your email campaigns are Tuesday and Wednesday between 8-10 a.m. (but e) points out the top engagement times fall between 8am – 10am?), while other research points out Monday and Saturday to be the worst (though looking at i) – Sat has the highest conversion rate?) and Tuesdays are the best ;
h) sending marketing emails before 10:30 a.m. on Thursday generates 25% CTR;
i) Saturdays have the highest conversion rate for both B2C and B2B emails than any other day of the week;
j) Fridays have the highest open rate than any other weekday (including the weekend);
k) email campaigns sent on Thursday generate higher revenue per recipient;
l) high success rates also occur in the evening between 8 p.m. and midnight; and
m) 42% of email opens happen on a mobile device with 40% on webmail and 18% on desktop.
After trawling through so much research data for you (and having our heads spin for a good 15-20 mins.), we summarised the following for both B2B and B2C emails –
a) the perfect days of the week to send emails are Tuesday and Thursday; and
b) the optimal time of day for sending email campaigns is between 8 a.m. – 10 a.m.
The advantages of using this data as a starting point are that you’ll not only save time on figuring the best time for your bulk emailing but also, utilise it to achieve better email engagement.
However, like everything else in life, there are disadvantages. You will be facing a high competition rate and, most importantly, you might risk being ignored as you won’t be the only one taking advantage of these studies and stats.
Though, keep in mind that there’s no one perfect formula that works for all. Thus, sometimes weekends might not be the best time for B2B companies, however, it’s worth a shot if you have an online store, for example. After all, most people look more thoroughly through their emails when they have a bit more free time and that mainly happens during the weekend. It’s all about testing and knowing your subscribers.
If you still don’t feel confused – or lost for that matter – you can dig in into even more stats delivered by our dear friends at Intercom.
Tips For Establishing What Time YOU Should Send Emails
As essential to your email marketing success as it is, defining the best time to send emails can either strengthen your relationship with subscribers or completely obliterate it.
If your marketing emails are poorly timed, you risk having a skyrocketing unsubscribe rate – and you do not want that to happen. However, sending them at the right time will result in increased conversion rates and can turn first-time buyers into repeat customers.
It is also important to take into account that subscribers habits change. While they would’ve opened your email on a desktop or webmail before, now they mostly do it on mobile devices and they have the tendency to be more active during the evening (I know I am).
You can find your brand’s perfect timing by –
a) using surveys – simply ask your recipients when would they prefer to receive emails;
b) analysing your subscribers’ activity based on previous email blasts;
c) A/B testing your email campaigns;
d) studying your recipients’ buyer personas;
e) targeting recipients based on their time zone; and
e) ‘playing around’ with different times and days.
When establishing the perfect emailing times for your business it’s equally important to remember to be consistent. Once you’ve pinpointed the perfect time of day for your marketing emails make sure you stick to it. If your subscribers get accustomed to seeing your emails in their inbox on Tuesday at 10 a.m. with a cup of coffee in hand or on Friday at 10 p.m. with a glass of wine, you don’t want to disappoint them – do you?
General email send time best practice, advice and tips are great. However, they won’t always be applicable. What might work for one business, might not necessarily work for another. So, as email marketers, we might never be able to put this question to bed.
Nonetheless, while there’s no magic time of day to send your emails, you’ve gained enough knowledge to develop an optimised email marketing strategy that will drive your conversions and ROI – hopefully – through the roof, if implemented correctly.
Now, all you need to do is create an email campaign with quality content utilising personalisation and automation and then send it.
Also, make sure you know your subscribers before you email them. After all, they are the ones that will tell you when the perfect time for you to send them your marketing emails is.
Lastly, remember to always, always A/B test your campaigns. It’ll allow you to gain a better understanding of what works for your subscribers and what doesn’t.