5 Snafus That Kill Your Click-Through Rate

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Newbies to email marketing are absolutely obsessed with open rates, and why not? After all, an opened email means that our subject line did its job, right?

While open rates are always a good sign of a great subject line, what happens after your subscribers decide to read will ultimately make or break your entire campaign. Simply put, a quick open and close won’t do much for your business—you want to make sure the content of your email is just as engaging as the hook!

Perhaps the best way to understand how to craft the perfect email is to understand what not to do. To help with that understanding, we’ve outlined the 6 most common snafus we see email marketers make everyday that their ruin click-thru rates and how to avoid them in your writing.

 

1. Outdated Design

We’re not in the late 90’s anymore. Gone are the days of huge chunks of text and bright “Congratulations!” emails.

Example of a poorly designed email

The importance of great design simply can’t be overstated, especially given that readers will make the decision to keep reading your email in a matter of seconds. Therefore, it’s best to follow a three-pronged approach when designing to ensure maximum readability:

  • Use a heading that follows the tone and message of your subject line (for example, if your subject line poses a question you should have a clear response upfront)
  • Break up your copy into short sentences and paragraphs, treating your email body as a sequence for readers to follow through to your CTA
  • Use as few words as possible while still getting your point across (if your users want to read more, then they have to click through)

Your design should do everything in its power to grab your reader’s attention without giving so much that they have no reason to click. When in doubt, less is more.

 

2. Faulty Fonts

It’s not just the content of your message that matters, but also how they’re read. Font may seem like a subtle detail of your copy, but it can have a huge impact on readers. The rules of choosing fonts for your emails are relatively straightforward:

  • If you’re mixing and matching fonts, stick to one for headlines and one for copy
  • Make sure that your font size is optimized for readability (at least 14px for the body and 22px for headlines is a good rule of thumb)
  • If you’re stuck, pick a simple serif font versus something your readers might view as being campy

Although your message itself is most important, don’t neglect the the effects of font on your content’s readability.

 

3. Overwhelming Imagery

Ever been to a website that’s so busy with colors and huge, slow-loading pictures that you thought “Why bother?” and clicked away?

Attention spans are short on the computer. Don’t let your email get lost in the sea of poorly designed emails your subscribers may be receiving daily.

“Keep it simple” should be the mantra your messages. Make sure that imagery, such as call-to-action buttons or headline photos, drive readers to take actually take action versus distracting them.

Example of an email using an image well as a button

4. Irrelevant Offers

If you want to tank your click-through rate, there’s no faster way than sending the wrong offers your list. Granted they even get opened, chances are that you’ll simply leave your readers scratching their heads.

For example, new leads, opt-ins from Facebook ads, and former customers shouldn’t necessarily receive the same messages or deals. Since personalization is the name of the game with email marketing, segment your email lists to make sure that your messages are getting to the right audience.

 

5. Video Overload

Hotlinking to videos into your emails can be a great way to set your message apart from the pack. However, be wary of how video could potentially set off the spam alarm in your readers’ heads.

Perhaps the best way to harness the power of video is to let readers know that you’re sending on their way in the subject line. After all, video marketing is proven to have an incredibly high ROI and conversion rate, increasing a reader’s likelihood of making a purchase by up to 85%.

Example of an email using video to incentivize click-through

Consider only sending video messages to readers that already know you versus first-timers who aren’t familiar with what you have to offer.

 

Conclusion

Getting into the inbox of your readers can be a challenge in itself; however, actually getting readers to click through your messages is the ultimate goal of any successful email marketer. Luckily for us, we can learn from the mistakes of past marketers and not fall into any of the same common content pitfalls.

Now that you understand what not to do, it’s time to start thinking about you should do. For starters, choose an email autoresponder that can provide you with the tools you need to build great emails and achieve a high click-through rate. That’s where Sendlane comes in! If you’re not already a user, you can start a 14-day free trial now to see what we’re all about.

 

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Dave Bender

Dave Bender

Project Manager at Sendlane
Dave is Sendlane's Project Manager. Raised in sunny San Diego, he has worked in all aspects of Internet Marketing for the last 12 years. He has acquired a deep understanding and knowledge that covers SEO, PPC, Social Media, and Digital Marketing.
Dave Bender