Lead Capture

6 Reasons Your Emails Don’t Get Opened

By 14th September 2016 No Comments

The other day I read a great statistic: over 250 billion emails are sent every day. Quite an impressive figure, right? But how many of these emails go unopened? More importantly, how many of your recent email campaigns have gone virtually unopened by your subscribers?

Yes, the daily email figure is astonishing but there’s nothing more frustrating than spending time and energy on an email campaign only to earn a dismal and depressing open rate.

There are a number of reasons why your clients aren’t clicking your email call to actions, or worse still, not even opening your email at all, and I’m going help you tackle 6 of those reasons in this article.


Your subject line is, just boring.

I can’t help but subscribe to business and marketing newsletters etc. I don’t just do it out of habit; however, I do it for research to see what’s working and what other companies are doing with their marketing campaigns. With this being said, I must receive hundreds to my inbox every week.

Do I open them all? No. And this is due to the most common reason why emails go unopened – the subject line.

Reading the subject line of an email is like picking a book off the shelf at that little shop around the corner and only reading the title. Does it entice you to want to learn more?

It seems like when it comes to email, people really don’t have an issue judging you by your subject line. For that reason, there are a few things you need to remember…

Firstly, try to keep your subject lines short. You don’t need to describe every single thing that’s inside the email. The goal is to grab your subscriber’s attention and give them a reason to WANT to open it – have your subscriber feel like they NEED to open it in fact!

You also want to avoid being too salesly and promotional in your subject lines. I’d recommend avoiding terms like “FREE” and “% OFF” as these can also send your emails to the dreaded SPAM folder.

Keep your subject lines short, exciting and the more personal the better. A recent trend is including your subscriber’s first name, which can actually increase open rates by over 17%.


Your emails just aren’t clear.

You must make your email campaigns crystal clear. If readers don’t know what you want from them then they will just delete the email without batting an eyelid.

Don’t try and tiptoe around or pull the wool over your subscriber’s eyes, they deserve more respect. So if you want something from them, maybe a commitment to an offer or a review from their last service experience – ask for it.

You might think you’re asking for exactly what you need, but people still aren’t responding. Keep reading. Can they find your request amid everything else in the rest of your email? Do they know you’re expecting them, not someone else, to act?


Your emails are like novels!

We’ve all gotten these emails. When we see massive blocks of text, we feel exhausted just at the thought of having to parse it for whatever is important. You’re not reading them. Why do you expect your clients to?

Excise the fluff. Get rid of all the qualifier words, such as I was hoping, if you could, when you have some time, etc.

You can also remove the extensive retelling of whatever the broader issue is. Definitely, provide enough context in your email so the recipient knows what you’re talking about, but only as it relates to the specific need of this email. And keep it brief.

Whatever you’re writing, use shorter sentences and simpler words. If you absolutely must write a lot, use short paragraphs, bullet lists, and white space to avoid the appearance of a word tsunami.


You’re sending subscribers too many emails

Constantly sending your subscribers emails will devalue your content and they will start to see you as a spammer.

We all have that person who we dread seeing pop up in our inbox. Don’t be that person for your subscribers. Email more periodically – keep newsletters to weekly or bi-weekly and make your emails substantive.


Don’t be rude or bad mannered.

Writing short and direct emails are effective, yes. But that doesn’t mean you have to lose all manners and appropriate text.

Emails that go along the lines of “Send me your testimonials now” is too direct and will see little response.

Remember to always greet your subscribers at the beginning of the email and remember to sign off with ‘regards’ etc.

At the same time, always proof-read your emails – bad grammar is one of the biggest turn-offs in email marketing.


Wrong time wrong place.

The timing of your email campaigns plays a huge part in open rate and click-through rate. This is where you need to enter the mind of your subscribing audience.

Are your subscribers more likely to read that email over breakfast in the morning or, if targeting businesses maybe you should send them in the afternoon.

In my career, I’ve noticed that email open rates can vary drastically based on the time and day of the week you are sending them.

It also depends on your business industry and whether your audience are in different time zones etc.

Testing this is vital for running successful campaigns.

Mailchimp’s analysis of over a billion emails found that opens increased after 12 pm, and are highest between 2 and 5 pm. However, this being said, Kissmetrics analysis was different, finding that the early hours were when open rates were at their highest.

Once again, testing is vital. Nobody can truly say the best time to send emails as unfortunately, it just isn’t that easy.


Final Thought

If you have notice that your subscribers have stopped opening your emails and taking the necessary call-to-action then it’s clear that something needs to change.

The above pointers are just a few common reasons that may be affecting your email campaigns. But like I say, they are just a few.

I’d recommend that you optimise your subject lines and begin to be more exciting and personal with your content. Give the readers valuable content that they will want to receive week in week out.

Don’t just keep bombarding your subscribers with offers. It will numb the effect in time and you will be left with a ghost-town of subscribers that never open your emails.


Finally, take time with your campaigns and remember to test everything as often as possible.


If you have any questions on email campaigns please feel free to comment in the section below.