What’s the best day to send out an email to increase click-through rates? Weekday? Weekend? Early morning, or late afternoon? What subject lines work best? A thought leadership piece or a hard sell? Should the word “FREE” be included in the subject line?
When crafting email-marketing campaigns, the aim should be to increase click-through rates. And the only way to find out how to increase click-through rates is to run experiments. Split testing is the most common way to determine which campaigns will be most successful and increase the chances of recipient engagement.
Split testing is a method of executing controlled, randomized experiments that work to measure click-throughs. When it comes to emails, split testing is frequently used to test changes to calls-to-action, subject lines, time of day to deliver offers and more.
An A/B test works like this: you set up two versions of the same campaign and send it to a small percentage of your total subscribers. Version A is sent to half of your test group while the other half gets Version B. The result? The measure of the campaign that received the highest click-through rate is sent to the whole subscriber list. Obtaining information from A/B split tests means fine tuning subsequent email campaigns. While continuing the testing process, you are able to achieve consistent improvements to make smarter campaign decisions.
Best Practices to Increase Click-through Rates
The following is a list of 3 email marketing A/B split testing best practices to increase click-through rates.
Testing the subject line
Increasing the rate of click-throughs of an offer in the body of an email starts with getting recipients to click into the email. That’s where subject lines come in. Subject lines are often referred to as ‘prime real estate.’ Their impact either makes a recipient take action and click on the email, or it entices them to send the email to the trash folder. Our goal is to get customers to open our emails, and when we optimize our subject lines through A/B split testing, we can increase click-through rates.
The power of the social sharing option
According to econsultancy, emails that include a social sharing option generate 30% higher click-through rates than emails without social sharing links. Even if your recipient doesn’t want to take the offer in the email, they might know someone who does. By giving your audiences the opportunity to share the email, you can increase your click-through rate. A/B split testing your various social sharing options enables you to see which are converting better than others.
More email is read on the mobile than on the desktop. Stats show that 47% of email is now opened on a mobile device, Litmus –”Email Analytics” (April 2014). Conducting A/B testing on email templates is a key part of maximizing conversions with recipients that are reading our messages on their mobile devices. When we create several email templates, we gather data on which ones will increase click-through rates.
A/B testing enables marketers to crack the code on the best combination of email marketing elements – design, layout, content and more in order to increase click-throughs. All these elements require real science. This is why world class marketers explore various testing methodologies in an effort to identify the best combinations.
Are you ensuring that you are sending out emails that have the greatest chance of increasing click-through rates through split testing?