Reading emails and acting on them is now primarily a mobile activity. Indeed, according to a recent study by Constant Contact, 52% of people now use their smartphone as their MAIN email device.
Gone are the days when you could rely on large computer screens to make your emails pretty with lots of big images. These days you need to concentrate on “mobile first”.
Indeed, for people under the age of 30, the mobile use of email is even higher, with 88% of these individuals using smartphones to read emails. Overall, the research found that 75% of people will delete emails if they cannot be opened or read on a smartphone.
In other words, if your emails are not mobile friendly you may as well not send them.
However, if people do open your email on their smartphone and engage with it they also re-open it on a desktop device later, the study shows. It seems that people are using their mobiles to do an initial check on an email, deleting any they cannot read, then later on going back through those emails on their computer. That might say more about the lack of functionality of smartphones, than it does about the emails themselves. However, the Constant Contact research did find that people do engage with mobile emails with almost half of them clicking on links in an email.
Whichever way you look at this research it confirms that mobile friendly emails are essential if you want to engage with your customers. Gone are the days when mobile friendly was a “nice to have”.
So what do you have to do to ensure your emails are mobile friendly?
- Firstly, if you must use graphical design make sure your templates are completed in “responsive” design, so that they adapt to the screen size of the device on which they are being viewed.
- Secondly, keep graphics to a complete minimum and if you must use images keep their size to the lowest possible.
- Thirdly, make sure your links open in a “new” window so that you force the opening of a browser, otherwise in some instances people will lose access to your email once they click on a link.
- Finally, use colour to signal things like headlines, sections and so on. That way people can see easily what each part of your email is about, even at small screen sizes.
But whatever you do, make sure you design your emails with small screen mobile devices in mind FIRST.