Your customers are getting your email marketing messages on their mobile devices, but what are they doing with them? A recent study, Email Interaction Across Mobile and Desktop, looked at how users interact with emails on mobile devices. Here’s what they found and what it means to your marketing.
First, email consumption is rapidly shifting toward mobile. The study analyzed 6 million email marketing campaigns sent in 2013 and found that 41% of initial opens occurred on a mobile device, 28% on a desktop and 22% via webmail. In fact, from 2011 to 2013, email opens on mobile devices increased 30%.
The percentage of clicks occurring on mobile devices is growing, too. One-third of total clicks in 2013 took place on a mobile device. However, clicks as a percentage of opens are significantly lower on mobile than on other desktop or webmail clients. The percentage of clicks relative to opens was 19 percent on webmail, 14 percent on desktop and 11 percent on mobile. More surprising, the percentage of clicks relative to opens has gradually declined, while remaining steady on webmail and desktop clients.
The study also looked at “triaging”—the practice of users opening an email on a mobile device, deciding whether to delete it or save it, and then opening it again later to interact in more depth. The authors theorized that triaging might be why the percentage of clicks relative to opens is declining—and the study seemed to support that.
About one-fourth (23%) of emails that were initially opened on mobile devices were later opened again. Seventy percent of these were opened on the same device, and 30% on a different device. Users who opened emails the second time from their computers were 65% more likely to click through.
In general, 87 percent of clicks happen when an email is first opened, and the fact that one-third of clicks occur on a mobile device shows that people are getting more comfortable clicking on their devices. But only 78% of clicks on mobile devices happen on the first open, and the fact that those who open emails on their computers are more likely to click through also suggests that screen size is a factor in how people interact with your emails.
What does it mean for your business?
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Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow her on Google+ and Twitter.com/Rieva, and visit her website, SmallBizDaily.com, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.