Are Your E-Mails Optimized For Mobile Devices?

It’s crucial to design your e-mails for the rapidly-growing mobile audience.

Mobile-Email-StatisticAs more e-mails are opened on mobile devices, it’s important that you optimize your content to match the audience.

As mobile devices and smartphones become the standard tools for navigating web content, we are seeing a major shift in how users experience the internet and other web-based applications. It’s becoming more and more imperative for businesses to keep this in mind as they structure communications with their loyal and desired customers.

A major component in this change is the way consumers engage their e-mail accounts. What was once a process involving a desktop or laptop computer, a login process, and extended message creation/delivery process, has transitioned into a task that’s as simple as pulling a device from your pocket, pressing a few keys and reading/sending. Studies show that 45% of email opens occurred on a mobile device, and this is rapidly growing. Another study showed that mobile e-mail opens increased from 15% in the first quarter of 2011 to 42% in the first quarter of 2014. That’s an increase of 180% of 3 years!

These numbers suggest that mobile use of e-mail is only increasing, so it’s important to target your messaging to this medium. E-mail is the most popular activity on any smartphone, with 78% of users checking e-mail on their mobile phone. The need to check our communications is so pervasive that, for many of us, that it’s the first thing we think about every day. 36% of people said that checking e-mail, social media, and text messages was the first thing they do after they wake up in the morning. That’s pretty incredible!

In younger crowds, where free e-mail services and personal accounts are most common, there has been a huge shift toward mobile e-mail. Some of the largest e-mail providers in the world, Google and Yahoo!, have noticed that over 68% of their e-mail opens are occurring on mobile phones. And mobile interactivity is a major reason for the trend. Mobile clicks now account for almost 40% of all e-mail clicks! These devices were designed to create interaction, so messaging specifically targeted at mobile interaction has been tremendously successful at encouraging click-through.

Despite the obvious trend toward mobile-first engagement, marketers and communication experts have been slow to take notice. Only 37% of e-mails sent during the fourth quarter of 2014 were created using a mobile responsive design. This highlights that many programs still cling to methods which are focused on desktop interactions and large screen sizes. This disconnect inhibits the user experience and discourages positive interaction. For example, one survey suggested that:

  • 32% of users felt e-mails were too small to read and interact with
  • 26% of users thought websites and landing pages were not optimized for mobile use
  • 21% of users felt content was not well formatted for mobile phones

These are major problems and it’s important that marketers and business owners take note of the shift and make conscious efforts to improve their mobile focus. Fortunately, we’ve seen great success by forward-thinkers who have spotted the trends and gotten in front of them. E-mail marketers using mobile responsive designs saw a 40 percent higher click-to-open rate when compared to e-mails with non-responsive designs. What does that mean for you? Structure your e-mails to be read in the mobile environment and you’ll be much more likely to get a read and earn a response.

Stay tuned next week as we tackle Mobile-Friendly Web Design