Find below the best tips on how to increase your email open rates. How to get your subscribers and customers to open your emails. Email marketing tips for open rates.

Brought to you by Mau, a Senior Email marketer at eDigital.


  • Provide a compelling reason to open. It’s vital to provide the recipient with a reason to open your email. In turn, this means that the content of your email should be useful!
  • A great subject line. The subject line is the most important factor of all when crafting your email campaign, so take your time to get it right. Don’t sell what’s inside—tell what’s inside. Read MailChimp tips on writing effective subject lines. The best email subject lines are usually short (45 characters or fewer), descriptive, and keep their particular audience in mind as per Mailchimp Study. In fact, personalising the subject line with a recipient’s name or city can increase open rates by 20%. Most ESPs offer you the opportunity to test the effectiveness of subject lines which can provide valuable learnings on what subject lines work better than others.
  • Avoid Spam filters. Avoid using ALL CAPS or too many exclamation points!!! The best way to avoid spam filters is to learn how they work.
  • Hard bounces. Too many hard bounces is a sign of an old, stale list. People change email addresses every few months. Make sure you keep in touch with your subscribers regularly (at least once a quarter), so they can stay on your list. Maybe it no longer exists, or maybe someone made a typo when they subscribed to a list. Hard bounces might also be spam-filter —if you see an abnormally high number of bounces after a campaign, read your bounceback records for any messages or clues from spam filters. Here’s how to do that in MailChimp.

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  • Soft bounces usually mean the recipient is “temporarily unavailable” Maybe they’re on vacation, or their mailbox is full. You can keep those emails and try them again later. Some email platform vendors such as MailChimp auto-clean soft bounces after five failed campaigns.
  • Reduce “Abuse complaints”. They happen when recipients click the “This is spam” button in their email programs. That usually means they don’t remember you. Make sure your “From” and “Subject” lines contain your company name, so your subscribers will instantly recognise you. Here are a few more tips for preventing spam complaints.
  • Getting your emails acted upon. Your audience will expect an email that is well laid out, visually attractive and – most importantly – mobile-friendly.
  • Make your email recognisable. Keeping the design of your emails consistent with your website will help create recognition amongst your audience and offer a seamless experience when they click through to your site. Use your brand colours, logo, and fonts, and include images and the tone of voice that fits your brand. A clearly branded email will increase trust in your recipients.
  • Avoid image-only emails. It’s bad practice to design your email entirely with images (or as a single image). That’s because, according to ExactTarget, more than 60% of email clients block images by default. This means that when someone opens your email, the images won’t load unless they click a button. Consequently, design your emails under the assumption that images will not be seen. This way, your message should still be readable without images.
  • Maintaining a good image-to-text ratio is also important for avoiding spam filters.If your email is well-written, it should persuade the recipient to load the images.
  • Use great clear images. great photography can really make your email stand out. Ensure the images you use match the images you use on your website, social media and/or packaging. This way they are all consistent.
  • Use a Video Thumbnail to increase Click Through Rate (CTR) By default, most email clients don’t allow the ability to view rich media like Flash or video embeds. Instead, use a thumbnail image of your video (with a play button) that links to a web page.
  • Reach out frequently and consistently. While you don’t want to bombard your audience and trigger unsubscribes, you don’t want them to forget you either. Regular contact will help you build relationships with your audience, increase their familiarity with your branding, and actually make them more likely to open your emails. If someone signs up to your newsletter six months before they receive their first email, it’s likely they’ll have forgotten they ever signed up in the first place. Maintaining a steady flow of communications that balance sales messages with value-added content is the best way to get potential clients and current clients to buy more premium, more often, more quantity or recommend your brand to their family and friends.
  • Make use of your ESP’s “subject line” A/B testing tools to try out different subject lines with a small sample subscriber size.

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  • Have a one-only call to action. Your key objective should be to get users to click on your main call to action. here at eDigital we like to send one single call to action emails, with extremely limited view time ( people might browse around for 1-2 seconds) the objective of the email content has to be sharp to encourage click-through.
  • Use special offers to increase CTR’s. You might want to incentivise click-throughs via discounts or special offers and, where possible, create a sense of urgency (i.e. “last chance to register”).
  • Use bold colours. Make sure your buttons stand out by choosing a bold colour (green and orange buttons perform generally best) and easy-to-read text.
  • Use action-oriented language. Substituting boring words like “submit” and “enter” for more action-packed words like “get,” “reserve,” and “go.”
  • Make use of your ESP’s A/B testing tools to try out different CTA messages and designs.

You’ll be able to see the effectiveness of your CTAs by checking the click rate report available through your ESP. This will tell you which links in your content received the most clicks.

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Your communications should go beyond trying to sell something to someone and talk about areas of interest to your audience. For example, if you offer real estate services, you might send out top tips for evaluating the best deals in a specific area/zone. Once you have established the ‘value proposition’ of the email, writing the subject line gets a lot easier. You might, for example, say: ‘Thinking of selling your house in Sydney? Read these top tips when choosing the best real estate agent in your area.


Increasing email open rates is important for driving email subscribers’ engagement, improving brand visibility and nurturing subscribers’ relationships with your brand.

Focusing on improving your email open rate will help you grow your email list and measure email marketing success.

By focusing on strategies to improve email open rates, you can maximise the effectiveness of your campaigns and achieve your email marketing goals more effectively.

eDigital can help you conceptualise, plan, develop, run and optimise successful email marketing campaigns that generate leads and sales for your brand.

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