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Email Content That Converts

Published:
05/04/2018
Author:
Will Jago

In previous months, we have discussed getting your emails opened, using the subject line and pre-header text effectively, and how to generate effective reports from your campaigns.

This month, we focus on the content within your email and the best ways to optimise conversions once the email has been opened.

Here are our nine top tips:

1) Personalisation
If you have the recipient’s first name or last name, use it. An email, and every other form of communication, is much more engaging when you address someone by their name.

2) Above The Fold
Make sure your most important information appears above the fold on desktop, tablet and mobile. This means the moment a user opens the email, they are seeing the key information without having to scroll. It’s easy to have an image that takes up too much space.

3) Text
Today, we don’t like seeing a big block of text. Unless you’re really engaged with the company, this approach can deter the user from reading the full email. We suggest using text boxes to break up the text. Use an engaging teaser with a ‘Read More’ button for the user to click through for more information. The click also helps with your reporting.

4) Images
When it comes to images, there are a few essential things you should do before sending, to provide the best possible user experience and to help avoid spam filters.

•Size – make sure the image is clear, but don’t use an image that is too big. A big image can affect deliverability or the time it takes to download the email on a mobile.
•Aspect ratio - ensure your images line up if your images are side by side or stacked within the same column. It will give your email better impact.
•Alt-Text (or Alternative Text) - What is Alt-Text? Numerous email providers do not automatically download images nowadays (Outlook is a prime example), and this is where alt-text comes in. The user cannot see your images, which is when this line of text appears. The text should describe the image in a very clear, concise way so the user is encouraged to download the images and see the full impact of the creative.

5) Avoid Overusing Spam Words
We won’t list all of the words to try and avoid, but certain words (around 200 or so) will affect your deliverability as they are associated with spam content.
We’re not saying you can’t use the words at all, but you should use them moderately. If the word you intended to use appears in this list, it may prompt you to think of another word to use instead.
Here is a really useful article by Hubspot, which outlines the full list.

6) Mobile-friendly
You will have heard marketing people telling you this for years now, but your email templates must be mobile-friendly. If you use email tools such as Mailchimp, their templates will be mobile-friendly by default. If you are using a developer to create an email template for you, ensure the mobile friendly element is written into the agreement.

7) Call-To-Action Buttons
One of the biggest mistakes in email marketing is using an image as your call-to-action button.

We mentioned earlier that not all email providers download images automatically nowadays. So, unless the user instructs the image to be downloaded, they will not see your call-to-action button.

The solution is an HTML button - a coded call-to-action button that looks and feels like an image button, but is just HTML and CSS code. Again, providers like Mailchimp will have this as default for their templates but it’s easy to use an image instead because you may feel that it looks better. Stick with the button, or opt for a developer if you are not happy with the template.

If you opt for a developer, write this tip into your agreement too.

8) Conversion
It’s great news that a user decides to click on your call-to-action button or decides to call you (if that’s your call-to-action), but all too often the conversion is compromised because it’s not properly though out. Here are three things that you should consider to improve your conversion rate.

•Website – if the call-to-action is to complete a task on your website, ensure that you are sending the user to a page which makes it as simple as possible for them to complete that task. If it’s to buy a product, send them to a mobile-friendly product page, which loads quickly.
•Landing page – if you have built a custom landing page it should focus on that one call-to-action, with the key information appearing above the fold. Make it easy for the user and don’t add in more links than are necessary. Too many links distract the user’s attention, luring them away from converting.
•Phone call – make sure the phone number is a reliable number. Mobiles phones can be a gamble (unless you know 100% that your mobile will have battery and won’t be out of signal). The safest bet is to use a landline for this valuable phone call.

It is best to have a human answer the phone (if possible). If someone is calling up to make a purchase or enquiry, we suggest that you do not send them to an automated numbering phone service, which can leave the prospect frustrated.

9) Proofing
The final aspect you need to remember before sending your email - make sure that you, or someone else, does the following:

•Send a Test Email – check the test version on desktop/laptop, tablet and mobile
•Proof for typos and grammar – people really do care about this
•Proof links – test that they are working correctly

To read out previous articles click on the links below;
•Subject Lines & Pre-Header Text
•7 Steps to Email Reporting

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