Once you start building your email list, one thing that may be high up on the frustration list is getting them to open your emails. This is a challenge for everyone, but you can improve email open rates with these ten tips. 

  1. Clean Your List Regularly – List hygiene is an essential factor. If you have people on your list who aren’t interested because they signed up for a freebie, it will lower your open rates. Regularly delete email addresses that aren’t opening your messages so that the people who are on it want it. 
  1. Set Expectations Immediately – Upon the very first transactional email, which is the one most likely to be opened, set expectations by providing the most value you can and telling them what to expect from you in the future. 
  1. Keep Your List Segmented – Don’t add everyone to one general list without using the tagging features available in your email autoresponder system. The tagging will separate your audience based on the criteria you set, such as which freebie they downloaded, what product they bought, or how they responded to a poll. 
  1. Know How to Avoid Spam Filters – Your autoresponder system has education for you to read; take advantage of it. They’ll teach you how to avoid spam filters and follow the rules of your system to get more opens. 
  1. Understand When Your Audience Opens Emails – Every audience is slightly different, but your autoresponder service has the data telling you when people are more likely to open emails. Try their ideas first, then check the data. As you build your list, check your own stats to find out when most people are opening the emails, so you pick the right day and time. 
  1. Focus on Your Customer of One – Every email you send should be written as if it’s just to the one person receiving it. Use the personalization features of your email to make it feel more personal to the reader too. 
  1. Keep Your Emails Conversational – No one likes to be talked down to, which is why you can ignore your English teacher for the most part when you send your audience messages. Use the word “you” and talk to them like you’re just talking to a friend and giving them advice. 
  1. Train Them to Open by Providing High Value – The more value you offer in every email, the more your audience will keep opening them. Start from that first transactional email and keep going, providing tons of value to your audience. 
  1. Develop Compelling Subject Lines – The subject line is almost as important as the message (well, maybe more important) because they’re not going to see the message if they don’t open it. 
  1. Use Personalization Wisely – When you personalize your email messages, make sure you’ve asked for the information that you want to include. Plus, if you don’t require that information, some of the personalization might look strange if the members did not provide that information.  

Improving email open rates takes patience and time. You need to be willing to check the metrics of the things that you try to find out what works and what isn’t working. When you know for sure, you can do more of what works and less of what doesn’t.