We all have smartphone pet peeves. My top annoyances are: group text messages, people that blindly walk while looking down at their phones, and parents using smartphones at dinner while ignoring their kids. But, my ultimate smartphone pet peeve is receiving promotional emails that force me to pinch to zoom. I cannot hit the delete button fast enough, just, after I unsubscribe. The truth is very, very few of us are willing to work hard to view desktop emails on a smartphone. The only times we are willing are if we specially requested the information, or if it is critically important. Life is too short to view desktop promotions on a smartphone, and the data confirms this.
A recent survey by leading email marketer BlueHornet shows that if email is not optimized for the mobile experience, bad things happen. Over 80% of the recipients simply delete the email; while another 30% also unsubscribe. I’m truly shocked these numbers aren’t significantly higher. We are all very busy, and receive an incredible amount of messaging- not only from email, but social media, in-app advertising, etc. There are simply too many other choices to bother with messaging that is not mobile friendly. You need responsive email technology.
What is responsive email technology? Simply put, responsive emails will automatically morph themselves to whatever device is viewing them. Whether your audience is viewing on a large or small smartphone, tablet, phablet or desktop, the email renders perfectly with large calls to action and readable text. Responsive emails are based on a single predefined template, eliminating the need to create a unique version for each device.
If you are sending out email campaigns on a regular basis, be it newsletters, service reminders or sales opportunities, you are potentially wasting half of your money. A 2013 study by Litmus (known for their email analytics) indicates that over 51% of email opens occur on mobile devices. When the 2014 stats come out at the end of this year, those numbers will only move higher. Let’s take a look at the math: For an email campaign of 5,000 addresses, this means that 2,550 (51%) are viewed on a mobile device. If you don’t have mobile friendly email campaigns, of the 2,550 emails viewed on a mobile phone, 2,040 of these potential customers just deleted your email, and 765 opted out of your email list; all because you delivered a terrible mobile experience. If this is a sales conquest email campaign, with a 0.3% closing ratio, you just lost over 6 sales, or nearly half of your sales results. If it is a service conquest campaign, with a 5% RO conversion ratio, you just lost 126 ROs. Our customers see an average of $257 per RO from service conquest campaigns, so you literally just lost over $32,000 (and countless repeat ROs from new fixed ops customers).
It is a very competitive market out there, and consumers have choices. Do you really want to waste half of your email dollars by not using responsive emails? For those of us literally joined at the hip with our smartphones, these numbers definitely pass the sniff test. When we receive responsive emails on our smartphones that are highly readable, with large calls-to-action, we are much more likely to not only read them, but engage and click for more information. This can eventually lead to a conversion. Also, keep in mind that any links or calls to action in an email also need to resolve to mobile friendly landing pages. Otherwise, the consumer disconnect with the smartphone will continue. It is important to remember that millennials are far more demanding than my generation (late Boomer). My kids won’t pinch to zoom anything, and any mobile-unfriendly page they land on gets immediately abandoned. So, while there are many smartphone pet peeves we cannot control, let’s fix non-responsive emails. Simply demand that your vendor support responsive design for your email campaigns, and your dollars will be much better spent.