Chances are you're already using email as part of your marketing plan. But are you designing these emails with viewers who may read them on a smart phone or a tablet in mind? If you're not, you may be missing out on some valuable click-throughs for your email plan.
Why Optimize for Mobile?
The importance of having mobile-friendly emails has skyrocketed in the past few months. According to research by GetResponse, mobile email opens increased by more than 30% in the nine months between June 2012 and March 2013.
During this time, iPhone email opens increased from 3.88% to 17.50% while iPad email opens increased from 2.99% to 8.93%. Meanwhile, Android device email opens increased from 5.04% to 8.46%. Although these numbers are impressive, they aren't surprising. The study also discovered that 3 out of every 4 people use their smartphone to view emails.
Think about your typical morning routine -- what's the first thing you do? More than likely, it's grab your phone and glance at your email and social networking sites. If you schedule your emails to release early in the morning, you have a captive audience looking at your work before their feet hit the floor.
These numbers show that mobile viewing of email is on the rise, so now is the time to start considering how the emails you send look on a mobile device.
Keep It Simple
When designing emails so that they are easy to view on a mobile device it's important to realize that your potential client will be viewing it on a screen that's much smaller than a desktop or laptop computer.
That means that cluttered subject lines, unfriendly copy and buried links will likely keep a client on a mobile device from actually reading the message in your email due to frustration with the viewing experience.
The best ways to avoid these issues are to keep your headlines and content as simple as possible. Consider keeping your subject line under 60 characters so users on mobile devices can quickly gather what the email is about. Follow the general rule that the shorter an email is, the more return you can expect from it.
Have you ever been on a mobile website, and left because you couldn't easily tap on a link with your finger? The same thing will happen to your emails unless you make your links easily tapable. And if PPA's website comes to mind for that mobile experience hoopla, it's in our roadmap for changes (-;
Apple recommends using a target area size of at least 44x44 pixels for any links on an email to be easily tapped on a mobile device. That means you need to keep your call to actions clear and obvious, and you'll definitely want to keep them above the screen scroll point.
Apple mobile devices automatically resize emails to fit the size of the screen, but Android and non-Apple devices will break the page at 320 pixels, forcing the user to scroll down to continue reading. So, you'll want to keep your "Calls to Action" above the 320 pixel point to ensure an optimal view for all users across a variety of devices.
It's also important to consider your font size when building an email for mobile. Apple devices automatically re-size all text to 13 pixels, so be sure that your content is still easily read at this size. Meanwhile, Android and other non-Apple devices will size headlines at 22 pixels and all body content to 14 pixels. It's a great idea to make sure the text of your email works for both mobile formats!
Test, and Then Test Again!
Once you've designed an email that you feel will work well with mobile, don't forget to test how it looks. Send it to your own phone or tablet and find a friend with a different type of phone or tablet than your own so you can see how it looks on several different mobile devices.
Keep these tips in mind for your next email campaign, and above all, remember to be engaging. Email only takes up 5.3% of the time a user spends on their mobile device, so you'll need to grab their attention quickly.
Mobile devices are here to stay, and optimizing your email for them may help you draw in even more business!
Looking for more mobile marketing advice? Read the "Reach More (Photography) Clients with Some Mobile Marketing" blog post and stay tuned to the PPA Today blog for more marketing tips!