Testing Email Conversion.
One of the things about the web is that you get plenty of so called “Experts” telling you how you should do things.
Email is a classic example.
Every man and his dog is out there telling you how to format your emails, how many links to add, whether to add pictures or not, even how often to send them.
That’s great but I can tell you from experience every market and audience is different.
The only way you will ever know what works best for your email readers is by testing.
Here an example…
One of my clients had read that the latest trick was to “give content first link last”.
In other words, he would write a 300 + word email about himself and some tips and then right at the end, just before his signature, he would have a call to action.
It actually sounds like a good idea and I know a few “Gurus” who use this method to great effect.
But that doesn’t mean it works for everyone and every market.
When emailing there are several statistics you have to watch.
Open Rate (Although that’s not an accurate figure because you don’t have to open emails to read them nowadays).
Click through (To your offer or more information)
Complaint rate (You always get complaints but you don’t want to continually get them at high levels)
Unsubscribe Rate (Again you will always get plenty of these but you want to establish an average)
Sales (This is the most important one. How many sales are you making from your email when you make an offer?)
By establishing some averages you can then see what effect changes have.
If you change something in your email that continually gets you more sales but your complaint rate goes through the roof for more than a couple of days then you may need to address it before your email list provider starts taking notice.
Any changes will always affect your stats in one way or another but thats not always a bad thing.
In this case, I asked the customer to do a number of different tests based on what I have found to work.
One of them was to add a call to action earlier in the email.
This is how many of us were originally told to format emails…
…But over the years it has changed to a more subtle approach.
My reasoning is that in some markets people still just want to get to the point and a long email is just too much for them.
They may appreciate it and like the fact, you take the time to write so much information but they really don’t have time to read it all.
Giving these people a call to action early (formatted correctly) can sometimes work better…
…As it did in this case.
Sales immediately went up and interestingly unsubscribes and complaints hardly moved at all.
There is nothing wrong with using someone else’s technique for formatting your emails as long as you either test it against some established parameters or you use it as a start point and then test from there.
Here’s some test I have carried out that can have the most effect on your email conversions.
Text v HTML
Html with pictures / HTML text only
One picture linked to offer.
Wrap text to 400px wide/ Don’t wrap text
Text wrapped with link / Plain link to offer
The number of calls to an offer.
Offer in your P.S.
Calls to offer near the start/ Not until signature.
Every time you send an email, try changing just one thing and see what happens.
Sometimes a simple change can make a big difference to sales.
Until Next Time.