The Best Time to Send Email: How to Schedule Your Email Campaign
Email marketers are always on the lookout to find ways to get a better responses from their email campaigns.
To that end, they research what types of images are the most popular, whether they should embed video, how to incorporate emojis into their email subject line, and more.
But, one of the most asked questions by email marketers is always: when is the best time to send emails?
This is a valid question. After all, if you send emails when people are most likely to open them, you can’t help but succeed, right?
Unfortunately, there’s been a lot of conflicting information on this topic. How do you know which email marketing guru is right when it comes to the best time to send email in 2019?
Is There Really a Best Time to Send Email? In a Way, Yes.
A lot of research has been done trying to figure out the best time to send an email campaign. Every major email marketing service has done its own research on the topic. Even companies like CoSchedule—an online marketing organizational tool—have done best times research.
Based on the information above from CoSchedule, it seems like Tuesday mornings are the best times to send your email campaign.
The question, though, is whether this time is really the best time for your audience.
Look at the CoSchedule graphic again. You’ll notice that this information is fairly generic.
- A lot of people check their email one last time before going to bed
- 50% start their day with an early morning email
This data is based on what the general population does with regard to checking their emails.
To some extent, this information is helpful. It’s a great starting point for email marketing. However, as you hone your marketing skills and get to know your audience better, you want to find out what works best for them.
Your ideal client might not be an early riser, or they may have a strict policy to stop checking emails at the end of the workday, as opposed to the end of the day.
The people you market to might fit into the general population, or they might fit very much outside of that box.
How can you find out what works best for your audience? The best way to find out the best time to send an email campaign to your email list is to do A/B testing.
A/B Testing: How to Find Out the Best Time to Send Emails to Your Audience
Split testing is typically used to find out what type of content will be more popular with your audience. You can learn:
- What type of subject lines will get the best open rate with your subscribers
- What type of content they like
- What images are the most popular
Delivra’s A/B testing can also tell you the best time to send email to those on your list.
Here’s how you do it.
Create two identical email campaigns—same images, same subject line, same content. Send half of your emails out at a certain time, say Tuesday morning. The other half will be sent out Thursday afternoon.
This test will tell you which time garnered you the highest open and click-through rates.
You can keep testing until you hit the sweet spot: the best time to email your unique subscribers. From then on, you can schedule your emails to go out at the same time each week.
It’s a good idea to do this type of testing periodically as your list grows or as your brand evolves. What worked great last year might not be as effective this year. You have to find out the best time to send email in 2019, and the only way to do that is with A/B testing.
2 Steps That Will Make Scheduling Delivery Times so Much Easier
Once you’ve figured out the best time to send an email campaign to your list of subscribers, the next thing you want to do is take advantage of email segmentation and automation.
1. What Is Email Segmentation and How to Do It
Email segmentation is a powerful way to improve open and click-through rates. How does it work?
You divide your list of email subscribers into subgroups, or segments, based on a certain set of criteria. In this situation, the criterion is when your subscribers open their emails.
After your A/B testing, you might find that half of your list opens their emails on Monday evenings, while another majority open on Wednesday around mid-morning. Instead of opting for what’s best for the majority, you can set up segments.
Those who open their emails on Monday evenings will receive your latest campaign email on Monday evenings. Those who prefer mid-morning on Wednesdays will get your emails right on time.
Source: Neil Patel
2. How to Use Email Automation to Your Advantage
Automation is going to be your best friend when it comes to segmentation and the best time to email your audience.
Here are some ways you can use it.
- Schedule your next email campaign to go out at the best time for your audience.
- Write a batch of emails all at once and then schedule them to go out at specific times throughout the week or month. This can save a ton of time and boost your marketing team’s productivity.
It’s actually really easy to automate your emails, too. Once your email has been written and all of the images or videos links have been added, click the save button. Then, instead of hitting the send button, find a “send later” tab.
Click on the tab and a box will open up giving you various day and time options to choose from. You’re probably familiar with this concept as it’s very similar to how you schedule an event/appointment in a digital calendar, like Google calendar.
Automation is also a wonderful tool to use for welcome campaigns. You don’t have time to send an individual welcome email every single time someone subscribes to your newsletter list. Instead, write your welcome email beforehand and set it up to automatically send whenever someone subscribes to your list. It’s also ideal for event reminders, like your latest product launch.
Best Time to Send Email 2019: Email Marketing Best Practices
Here are some steps you can take to enhance the use of segmentation and automation so that you continually send emails at the best time for your email list.
- Create a plan for welcome campaigns vs. weekly updates and product launches
- Write the emails you want to send to your customers. Batch writing will boost your productivity.
- Schedule when you want to send automated emails. For example, you can automate your welcome series to include an email when someone signs up for your newsletter and another one on the anniversary of that date.
- Pay close attention to your email insights, which includes open, click-through, and unsubscribe rates. These analytics will show you what’s working for you and what’s not so you can make adjustments to your campaign as needed.
- Periodically conduct A/B split testing to find out if your email list could stand some adjustments to your current segmentation lists.
- Use your analytics and split testing to help you with lead generation and cultivation. Not all of your email subscribers will need the same thing, just as they all won’t open their email at the exact same time of the day. Figure out what appeals to certain groups and create automated email campaigns to fit those needs. This will help to improve open, click-through, and conversion rates.
- Stay organized. Keep an editorial marketing calendar to keep track of when to send out certain emails and when to complete your analytics evaluations and A/B testing.
When is the best time to send email? It depends.
Not every email subscriber list is created equal. Your ideal client has different wants and needs and opens their emails at different times.
Find out what type of content your customers want and when they’re more likely to read it with A/B testing.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll be able to segment your email list so that the right emails are going out at the right time. Add in some automation to make your life easier.
All of this will take some time, but in the end, it will be worth it. You’ll have a higher ROI from your latest campaign if you can figure out the best time to email your subscriber list.
A/B testing can help you create more engaging emails. Would you like to learn more about how to do this more efficiently? Check out our A/B split testing tutorial.