Recent research shows that the best time to send your emails might not be the hour or day you have on your marketing calendar.
On behalf of Hubspot, social media specialist Dan Zarella looked at over 9.5 billion emails sent using MailChimp, analyzing clickthroughs, open rates and what times of day/week worked best.
One interesting fact uncovered was that most people don’t use separate work and person inboxes; 88% use the same inboxes for both.
And if you think your business prospects are only checking their inboxes Monday-Friday, you might want to reconsider that position. Clickthrough rates were seen to be considerably higher on Saturday and Sunday.
“That might be counterintuitive, but our belief is that it may be because you’re competing with less people,” says Eric Vreeland, inbound marketing manager for Hubspot. “If you do happen to send something on the weekend, they’re more likely to clickthrough and give it the attention it deserves.”
“Small business owners, in particular, are more likely to open an email on Saturday or Sunday,” he adds. “The head of marketing at a large company is more apt to ignore their inbox on the weekend.”
As for time of day, the commonly held wisdom is that you should send early in the morning, to catch people when they first sit down at their desks. But again, says Vreeland, if you send at the same time as everyone else, you’re competing with more people.
Still, the highest clickthroughs were seen at 7 a.m. central, and the lowest at 4 p.m. “If you send later in the day, you’ll get buried in the haystack.”
Tuesday, which was shown to have the highest unsubscribe rate of any day of the week, might be another overcrowded time to mail. Thursday, in comparison, had the lowest. “Of course, it all varies depending on the industry or target audience,” he says. “Test and see what works for you.”
As for frequency of messages, in Zarella’s research it was found that the companies that send more emails had lower unsubscribe rates. Still, cautions Vreeland, you can’t just assume that more emails equals better results.
“You have to take into account how happy your customers are and the quality of what you’re sending,” he says. “And the more emails you send, the more you have to focus on the quality of your content and giving value to your customers.”