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What Makes People Decide to Read YOUR Emails?

Written by Anna Milward on June 16, 2015

Email marketing is hard work and it can be frustrating to go to all the effort of writing, designing and sending great emails if nobody ends up reading them. Unfortunately with so many people dealing with inbox overload these days, emails that aren’t instantly appealing to readers often end up in the trash unread, a problem that can seriously hamper the effectiveness of your email marketing.

Fortunately there is a way you can help improve your open rates and boost your reader engagement so your emails can cut through the competition and stand out in your recipients’ inboxes. It all comes down to understanding what it is that makes a person decide to click on one email and delete another.

Here are three essential factors that your email has to contain if it’s going to make your recipients compelled to read it over all the others in their inbox:

 1. An attention grabbing subject line

The subject line has been shown by numerous studies to be one of the most important factors that people use when deciding whether or not to open an email. This means that if you want to make sure your emails are read, an attention grabbing subject line is a must.

Writing compelling subject lines is an art form and takes practice. The most effective subject lines appeal to their specific audience, get attention and create a sense of intrigue and curiosity that makes the reader feel compelled to read the email.

Avoid using long subject lines – with so many recipients now using their smartphones to check their email, a subject line longer than 35 characters may not display in full. It’s also important to be aware of the dangers of using common spam words in the subject line and avoid them at all costs.

2. Relevant or important information

The vast majority of recipients are far more likely to open an email that they believe contains relevant or important information than one that is more obscure. And once they open it, if the first few lines are appealing enough they will read the rest.

This means you should always put any important information towards the top of the email where it is easily visible. Important information could include special offers, calls to action and personalised content that is likely to be especially relevant to your email recipient.

3. Great visuals

The human brain processes visual information much faster than text and this means that the right visuals can make all the difference when it comes to getting noticed, and more importantly, getting your emails read.

When you are using images, choose smaller image sizes and before sending make sure your images display in all the different email clients. It also helps to use alt text to describe each image so that even if your recipients can’t view the images themselves they still get an idea what they are about.

Don’t waste your email marketing efforts on emails that never get read! Create emails with attention grabbing subject lines, relevant content and eye catching visuals and you’ll benefit from higher open rates, more recipient engagement and better overall results for your email marketing.

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