If you got here, you were asking yourself something along the lines of “what is the best time to send my email campaign?”
You’ve probably also read several articles saying “it depends”. That is the right answer, but is it satisfactory? Of course not.
The thing is, although the best time to send email campaigns might vary according to the industry and your audience, there are a few benchmarks you can rely on until you figure out the right time that works best for yourself and your brand. We’ll go through the main lessons about scheduling emails that we have gathered from a few online studies.
The Best Weekdays to Send an Email
First of all, you should know that the many studies available online can only point you in an approximate direction. There are several different things that influence this data, and we decided to base this article on different studies in order to be able to give you a more detailed answer other than just saying “it depends”.
Some sources claim that the middle of the week is better for open rates and engagement. Therefore, Thursday is very often quoted as being the best day to send an email, and Tuesday is close behind. Wednesday seems quite a popular day to send email campaigns and newsletters as well. A study from Omnisend corroborated this.
However, here is where it gets tricky. GetResponse made another study that implies Tuesday is the best day to send emails, followed closely by Monday. Even though common sense tells you not to send important emails on Monday, it depends on your audience.
Usually, the reasoning behind not sending emails on Monday is that people just started their week, they have a lot to catch up on so they will not check their email as often. 📋
However, it could also be said that when users get to work on Monday, they want to get everything sorted so they check their email as well.
Also, there’s the weekend: Saturday and Sunday might not be days to send out your emails if you have a B2B product. But, if you have an eCommerce shop, you can use the weekend to leverage the low competition, since most companies don’t email during the weekend. Lower competition means it’s easier to get a good open rate.
Another way to look at it is to figure out which are the best days for different metrics. As you can see, Thursday remains the best day for highest email open rates, reaching an average of 18.6%.
On the other hand, the best day for the highest click-through rates is Tuesday at 2.73%. If your issue is unsubscribe rates, they are at their lowest on emails sent on Mondays and Sundays. 🏖️
If you send a weekly email, try sending it on Thursday first, Tuesday second, and then improve from there. For B2B products, weekdays are better; for online shopping, try the weekends first for lower competition.
The Best Time to Send Email Campaigns
If there isn’t agreement on the best weekdays to send an email, when it comes to the best time of the day to send email campaigns, there are quite a few diverging opinions as well.
Omnisend found out that the best time of the day for increased open rates was 8 AM, with an average open rate of 20.32%. However, for a better click-through rate, the same study recommended sending at 5 PM.
GetResponse came to a different conclusion: their best-performing emails were sent at 1 PM, as well as the typical commute times in the early morning and late afternoon. However, this should have changed in 2020 with a lot of the workers now staying and working from home. We’ll have to see how these numbers evolve from now on. 🐦
Sending your newsletters in the morning might be a good idea, but bear in mind that this will also mean there is quite a lot of competition. Your email might get lost in your recipients’ inbox. So, try to aim for less crowded times first.
As we mentioned, working from home means that many people won’t have commuting time in their days. From our experience, this has meant as well that while users want to disconnect, it’s a lot harder to separate working hours from time off. This gives you the opportunity to test some different times during the day.
Regardless of all this, there’s an essential factor that goes into finding out what the best time to send an email campaign is, and that is knowing your audience.
You should ask yourself the following questions:
- What do they do for a living?
- What is their usual schedule – i.e. do they wake up early? When do they usually have some free time?
- Are they working from home?
- Do they have kids? 👪
These questions will give you hints about the best time to send an email campaign taking into account your target audience’s daily habits.
Try testing by sending emails around 6 AM, 10 AM, 2 PM and 8 PM. Then, match the ideal days we recommended with the best time to send an email campaign according to the previous section. A great way to plan your tests is to create a table like this:
This will give you a foundation for your testing efforts. However, to make your campaign work, there’s more to it than timing.
Even if you schedule your emails at the right time, recipients might still not open them. This is due to another factor: your email subject line.
Email Subject Line Tips
We recently published an article listing the best email subject lines with 50 different suggestions for your emails. Most of them can be summed up by the following tips:
- Be friendly. Avoid institutional lingo; make your email sound like you are a friend, not a salesperson.
- Suggest that your users used to know something, but forgot. Fear of missing out is great for email subject lines.
- Imply that you have a secret recipe for something your recipients want to learn how to do.
- Use authority; a popular name might pique the interest of your recipients.
If you want to find out more about the best email subject lines, check out our article. Combining the ideal schedule with the perfect subject line will increase your open rate. After that, it’s up to your content to keep recipients interested and engaged.
Now that we have given you some suggestions about the best times to send your email campaigns, here’s the most important advice of them all: use these guidelines as a foundation for your testing, but understand that they are not set in stone.
We also recommend checking out the email subject lines article, as it will definitely help you get a better open rate for your campaigns.
When analyzing and testing, make sure you know your target audience well. Depending on your business and your recipients, the schedules that we have recommended may or may not make sense.t. To understand your audience, surveys can help. Offer something in exchange for your users’ opinion and listen to what your customers (or prospects) have to say!
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