When Is The Best Time To Send Marketing Emails?

May 15, 2014

Knowing your target market is going to be key to finding the answer to this question. Remember there will be no correct answer, it’s going to vary depending on what industry sector you are in and it’s going to take you some trial and analysis to work out what times you get the best responses.

I was once introduced to a theory that email that arrives when people are already at their computer is more likely to get read. Whereas if it’s received when you first open your email client, then the messages are more likely to get skimmed through or even deleted – especially if there are several messages all competing for your attention. In the past this has proven to be a reasonable approach. Several years ago, I worked on some emailing software that logs the email opening time for every recipient and then sends the next message to them at that time so that they will receive it when they are at their computer. This resulted in emails being sent at various times throughout the day and was successful at the time. However, there are a few reasons that I believe this approach to be outdated:

  1. Nowadays, everyone expects to have some emails in their inbox when they start their working day, so time is probably reserved to read these before cracking on with the rest of the working day.
  2. Once the working day is in progress, emails are often perceived as an interruption, so they will not be given priority. It may get saved for later, but the chances are it will be left in the inbox and the recipient will never get round to reading it.
  3. Today’s always-on culture means emails are often constantly checked and it’s so easy to open an email without actually reading it. This means that the data logged for when emails are opened is not an accurate representation.

What do you think? When are you most likely to read and click through to links in a marketing email? Please comment below or send me a tweet.