21 Best Tips To Improve Your Email Click-Through Rate

It’s not all just about the open rate when it comes to email marketing metrics!  Of course we want our emails to be opened – because that’s kind of the point right? But, here's the thing: an open email is just the start of the conversation.

Picture this: you've crafted the perfect email. It's got an engaging subject line that gets the email opened, well-written content that's both informative and entertaining, and a beautiful layout that's pleasing to the eye. It's the email marketing equivalent of a masterpiece. Yet, there's one problem: your subscribers aren't clicking on your call to action (CTA).

And honestly…  that's where the true magic of email marketing lies: in the click-throughs. Yes, having your emails opened is a crucial first step, but it doesn't stop there. We want (or rather NEED) our subscribers to engage, interact, and take action. 

The click on our CTA is what transforms a passive reader into an active participant. It's what drives traffic to our website, generates leads, boosts sales, and ultimately, provides us with a return on our email marketing investment – you know that 3600% ROI we’re all after.

You might be asking yourself “but Emilee…  my click through rate is not pretty, is there a way I can increase it?”  Well… I’m SO glad you asked because, yes there certainly is!  In fact, I’m about to give you 21 ways that you can improve your click through rate through best practices but first, let’s get to some basics.

What Does Click-Through Rate Refer To?

The click-through rate in email marketing refers to the percentage of email recipients who click on one or more links present in your email. It's extremely important to gauging the engagement level of your email campaigns and the interest of your audience in your content or offer.

Think of it like this: you've got an email list of 1000 subscribers. You send out an email campaign promoting a new product, and 50 of your email recipients click on the link to check it out. This would mean your email CTR is 5%.

Here's the formula to calculate it:

(Total Number of Clicks / Total Number of Emails (delivered)) * 100 = Email CTR%

This formula gives you the total number of unique clicks. It ensures that even if a single user has clicked multiple times, they're counted only once.

But if math is not your thing, not to worry!  This is a metric your email service provider (ESP) will provide, just take a look inside your analytics dashboard.

Why Is A “High” Click-Through Rate Important?

A high click-through rate is important for a couple of reasons. First, it indicates that your email content is not only reaching your audience but is also compelling enough to spark their curiosity and make them want to learn more about what you're offering – which is great!

Second, and maybe more importantly, higher click-through rates can lead to higher conversion rates. More clicks means more opportunities to convert leads into customers, and more chances to boost your revenue.

Ultimately, a high CTR is a signal that your email marketing strategy is on the right track. It means your subject lines are enticing, your email copy is persuasive, and your offers are appealing. It's a strong indicator of high audience engagement and interest that will eventually lead to more conversions and sales.

What is an Average Click-Through Rate?

Ok before we get to average CTR’s, let me preface this by saying it's important to remember that averages can be deceptive. They can provide a benchmark, but they definitely shouldn't be looked at as the definitive standard for success or failure. 

There are so many factors that can alter the “average” CTR.  Your email marketing goals, industry, audience, and the nature of your email campaigns can significantly impact what a good email click-through rate looks like for you.

With that in mind, let's get into it.

When it comes to CTR’s, what number should you be aiming for? Well, the average email click-through rate across all industries typically hovers around 2.5% to 3%. 

However, this is a very broad average and as the percentage can vary significantly depending on your specific industry.

You can check out industry specific CTR’s in right here:

Campaign Monitor: Email Metrics 

Remember that while aiming for a higher CTR is a good idea, it's also essential to focus on the overall engagement and conversion rates. After all, a click is just the first step in the customer's journey. The ultimate goal is to convert that interest into action, whether that's a purchase, a joining a membership, a download, or any other specific action that aligns with your email marketing strategy.

Don't just compare your click-through rates with industry averages. Your business is unique, and your history matters. Look at your past data, see how your CTRs have changed over time. This way, you'll get a clear picture of whether you're improving, and where you can kick things up a notch. Remember, understanding your own growth is key to unlocking success in email marketing.

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21 Effective Ways to Increase Click Through Rates

1. Audience Segmentation

Audience segmentation is the process of dividing your email list into smaller, more targeted groups based on certain criteria. These could be demographics, purchase history, engagement levels, or even their preferences.

By doing so, you can customize your email content to relate to the specific needs of each group, making your emails more relevant and relevance = more likely to get clicks!

2. Personalization

Personalization goes beyond simply addressing the recipient by their first name (though that's definitely a good start!). It involves creating content that meets the needs and preferences of each subscriber. 

This could be recommending products based on their browsing history, sending birthday emails, or even providing location-specific offers. Personalized emails show your subscribers that you value and understand them, which can boost both your click-through and conversion rates.

3. Use of Strong Subject Lines

Your email subject line is the first thing your recipients see, so make it count! A compelling subject line can spark curiosity, create urgency, or offer value, encouraging recipients to open your email and continue to click through. 

Remember to keep your subject lines concise, clear, and engaging!

4. Crafting Compelling Email Content

This might be blatantly obvious but it’s something to reflect on if you’re not getting the CTR you're looking for.  Your email content should be relevant, valuable, and engaging. 

Whether you're providing educational content, sharing industry news, or promoting a product, always consider what's in it for your audience – remember, always take it back to how you can help your target audience!

5. Clear and Compelling Call to Action (CTA)

Your CTA is arguably the most important element of your email. It tells your audience exactly  what to do next – whether that's checking out a blog post, claiming a discount, or signing up for a webinar. 

Keep your CTAs clear, compelling, and above all, easy to see.

6. Mobile Optimization

Because the large majority of emails are opened on mobile devices now, mobile optimization is no longer optional! From your email design to your CTA buttons, make sure everything is easy to view and clickable even on a smaller screen.

7. Timing and Frequency

Send your emails at the right time and with the right frequency. This will vary depending on your audience and industry, so be sure to check out your email analytics to find out when your audience is the most active. 

In regard to frequency, send enough emails to continuously provide value, but avoid bombarding your audience with too many emails, as this can lead to frustration and unsubscribes.  

This can be a balancing act and you’ll need to find a frequency that works for you and your audience.  I recommend starting with emailing once a week.

8. A/B Testing

A/B testing involves sending two slightly different versions of your email to see which performs better. You could test elements like your subject line, email content, CTA, or send time.

A/B testing can give you a lot of insights into what works best for your audience for future campaigns.

9. Email Design

A well-designed email can significantly boost your click-through rate as well. 

Use a clean layout, eye-catching visuals, and easy-to-read fonts. Also, make sure your CTA placement and CTA button stands out (try using contrasting colors) and is easy to click on.

10. Utilizing Analytics

Your email analytics can provide a wealth of information to improve your click-through rates. Look at metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates to understand what's working and what's not.

Try to find a theme among your emails with the highest click through rates and repeat what was done!

11. Use of Social Proof

Social proof, like testimonials, reviews, or user-generated content, can build trust and encourage more clicks. It shows your subscribers that other people have benefited from what you're offering, making them more likely to want to check it out too.

12. Dynamic Content

Similar to personalization, dynamic content changes based on the recipient's data and behavior, providing a more personalized experience. 

Let me give you an example; let's say you're a blogger specializing in educational printables. You have a diverse range of subscribers, with children in both elementary and secondary school.

When it's time to send an email promoting your latest printables, you can use dynamic content to target your audience members. Your subscribers with elementary school children will receive an email featuring your colorful, fun worksheets for learning basic math and spelling skills.

Whereas, your subscribers with secondary school students will get an email showcasing your advanced printables, perfect for mastering algebra or practicing essay writing.

Despite the email campaign being the same, the content adjusts to match each subscriber's specific needs based on the age group they're interested in. That's the power of dynamic content!

13. User-Friendly Layout

The layout of your email marketing campaigns is very important in guiding your reader's eyes and actions. Keep it clean, intuitive, and easy to navigate. Avoid cluttering your email with too many elements. 

Instead, focus on one main message or offer and design your email around that.  I also love to use headings and bullet points to help the reader skim through emails as needed. 

14. Re-engagement Campaigns

It happens to everyone: subscribers who once were active have gone radio silent. These are not lost causes! 

A well-planned re-engagement campaign can rekindle their interest. Remind them why they subscribed in the first place, offer them a special deal, or simply show them you've noticed their absence.

I have a re-engagment email template in my membership Inbox Insiders that’s great for this purpose!

15. Video Content

In our fast-paced digital world, people often prefer watching videos to reading long chunks of text. Videos can be a great way to convey a lot of information quickly and in an engaging way. 

You might want to consider adding videos to your emails, but always include a compelling call to action within the video or in the email text to ensure you still get those clicks!

16. Value Proposition

What’s in it for your subscribers? This is always what the point of your emails should come back to – and make sure this is clear in your emails. 

This could be exclusive content, discounts, or even the promise of being the first to know about new products or services. A strong value proposition can significantly increase your click-through rate.

17. FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)

Creating a sense of urgency can be a powerful motivator for action. Limited-time offers or exclusive deals can drive your subscribers to click through immediately to avoid missing out – but avoid being sleazy about it!  Don’t create false urgency.

18. Preview Text Optimization

The preview text is the short snippet that appears next to your subject line in the inbox. This is another opportunity to convince your subscribers to open your email. Make it engaging and consistent with the content of your email.

19. Inclusion of Relevant Images

Visual content such as images themselves, infographics, memes, etc. can grab attention, aid understanding, and increase engagement.  Have fun with it!

20. Building Trust

Trust is the foundation of any successful relationship, including the one between you and your email subscribers. Maintain transparency, respect your subscribers' privacy, and deliver on your promises to build trust and foster loyalty.

21. Interactivity

Interactive content like quizzes, polls, or interactive infographics can also make your emails more engaging and fun. This can lead to increased engagement and a higher click-through rate as well!

Quick Recap

Boosting your email click rate doesn't have to be a ridiculously complex task. I recommend taking a look at your analytics and whatever your click through rate is right now.  

With any of these 21 strategies, you can work on encouraging your subscribers to click and engage with your content. It might take some experimentation and tweaking, but the results will be more than worth it.

Remember, the key to a good click-through rate lies in understanding your audience, delivering relevant and valuable content, and continually optimizing your strategy based on your results and insights.  Don’t worry as much about average CTR’s but more so on constantly increasing your CTR based on your stats and history.

Let me know below if you have any tips or tricks that you’ve used to increase your click through rates in your own campaigns!

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