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Why poorly designed marketing emails could be costing you customers
Anyone who has an email address will almost certainly have signed up to a newsletter or mailing list of some sort over the years.

When done right, it’s a great way for consumers to stay connected with their favourite brands and services, as well as to get a heads-up on any special offers or promotions at online stores they’ve purchased from in the past.

It may feel like a relatively recent thing, but email marketing has actually been about since 1978 when Digital Equipment Corporation sent out the first mass email to roughly 400 potential clients.

Talk about beginners’ luck – this landmark email sparked sales worth $13 million and laid out the promise and potential of marketing through mass emails.

Since then, email marketing has grown into an industry in its own right and in the UK the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations ensure that ‘spam’ is kept to a minimum.

Any company that has earned enough respect from its customers that they actively want regular email contact shouldn’t be squandering this precious opportunity to strength customer relations.

Over a third of marketing emails don’t look good on mobile
Actually getting users to open the email in the first place is a long fought battle, so it was disappointing to learn that 1 in 3 consumers say that the marketing emails they receive are not well-designed.

Close to 2 in 5 (39%) of the 1,000+ US adults surveyed by a US email analytics firm 250ok said that promotional emails were poorly designed for their mobile device. Naturally, this doesn’t reflect well on the company in question and aside from any reputational dents, it also increases the risk of unsubscription.

Companies targeting the younger end of the market should be particularly in tune with how their emails look on mobile, with 82% of 18-34-year-olds deeming it somewhat to very important that an email’s design makes them excited about reading it.

However, the clarity of an email’s design is universally valued, regardless of age. Across all age groups, 93% said it was important that emails were clear to read and easy to navigate. A third of over-55s added that readability needs to improve in email design.

How are consumers viewing marketing emails?
Almost 7 in 10 (68%) of the survey sample view marketing emails on a smartphone two or three days a week. Users of Android smartphones read marketing emails more often than their Apple counterparts, with 54% viewing these messages more than two or three days a week compared to 34% of Apple users.

Computers are still a massive part of the mix though, with almost three-quarters (73%) viewing marketing emails two or three days a week through the Google Chrome internet browser.

Gmail was by far the most used email client, especially amongst 18-34-year-olds where it scored an 83% market share. Yahoo was the biggest email client with the 35-54 age bracket, while Microsoft’s Outlook had an even mix of age ranges.

There are many tried and tested ways to improve the open rates of your marketing emails, from picking an engaging subject line to sending at the right time, but the actual design of the correspondence is trickier.

However, services such as 250ok, Silverpop or other email platforms allow marketers to build and test email designs, monitor deliverability, and track consumer engagement.