Are you hoping to create a successful and effective email newsletter? Whether your ultimate goal is increased sales, better customer retention, or concisely staying connected to clients, it’s more important than ever in 2023 to have an impactful and strategic approach when crafting an e-newsletter.
As this digital world continues to evolve and grow, so do your subscribers’ expectations of up-to-date communication.
To help guide you towards creating powerful content, here are 15 email newsletter best practices that will ensure your email newsletter stands out from competitors.
Effective Email Newsletter Best Practices
1. Let them know what they are signing up for
You can include a small section around the signup form to inform them what content you will send them if they sign up for your email newsletter. Be clear and tell them what topics your newsletters will cover and how frequently they will get them.
If people learn what they are getting into when they sign up, they know what to expect from you and will be less likely to get tired of your content or report you as spam.
2. Write newsletters that offer value to the readers
Offering value is one of the best email newsletter best practices. While newsletters can be utilized to promote, it’s not the only purpose of it. A newsletter is mainly meant to deliver value or knowledge to its readers. Value is important because why does anyone spend time on something worthless to them?
So when you design your newsletter, keep at least 90% educational and just 10% promotional. You can deliver value with insider knowledge, monthly updates, or even free products.
If you are uncertain if your newsletters let your audience, the only way to find out is to ask them. Send your subscribers a feedback form to tell them what they feel about your newsletters and what they want to notice in the future.
3. Keep your content concise and easy to read
People usually don’t get motivated to read your newsletter when they see a long block of text, and they would likely glance at it or even skip it altogether. And if people are not reading your newsletters, your efforts are in vain.
So split the content into readable paragraphs to ensure that people can quickly read through your newsletter and get the details from it. To determine if your email newsletter is readable, you can ask someone to look at it and suggest what they see and if they can read through it easily.
4. Use images to enhance your newsletter
Newsletters with only text can be so dull that readers won’t read them. So we can utilize images or GIFs to watch your readers’ eyes and lure them into reading through.
You can add images to arouse readers about the newsletter’s topic or make them work with the text and describe the content to your readers.
But don’t bombard your newsletter with images or solely rely on them to make it good because if the image fails to load, your content might not make sense to the readers.
Also, when you can include images, ensure their file size is small so that it loads quickly when your readers open it.
5. Don’t forget to add the unsubscribe button
Give your subscribers a prominent, straightforward, one-click option to unsubscribe. Plus, always incorporate a mailing address in your footer, allowing subscribers to communicate with your company.
Not only do these best email newsletter practices make your email newsletter respected, but they also help you optimize your email deliverability.
6. Pay attention to your email newsletter design
Designing the layout of your newsletter content will have massive implications for how your readers engage with it. Making it straightforward to read and clear your calls-to-action (CTAs) will greatly boost your engagement metrics. Plus, well-organized emails help facilitate your email deliverability.
You also want to ensure that you’re designing with accessibility in mind. Are you adding an appropriate amount of color contrast? Are your fonts big enough? Do your images have alt text?
Other design best practices:
- Make your CTA buttons clear and concise
- Keep your emails on-brand
- Add your logo, website, and social media accounts
- Don’t be afraid of white space
- Make sure you add preheader text
Ultimately, your newsletter is your brand extension; as such, you want to ensure that it aligns with the rest of your brand experience.
7. Use segmentation to target your customers
While most email newsletters will go to your complete list, your organization may have a distinct structure. If your company serves multiple verticals, it may be smart to craft various types of content for each industry.
Or maybe you have newsletter subscribers in distinct regions, so having explicit content for each might make sense.
One of the companies’ biggest blunders with their newsletters is making it all about them. Your email subscribers don’t like to hear about you; they want you to provide valuable content, and the more personal you can get with them, the better.
8. A/B testing can improve your click rates
Your marketing team should be doing A/B testing. If they’re not, they must start doing it now. As much as we might like to admit we know our audience and the kinds of emails they prefer, we’re never going to know as well as our audience themselves, and A/B tests give your audience a chance to tell you what they like.
Marketers who A/B test notice far better engagement metrics like open and click-through rates than those who don’t, so you need to make A/B testing a priority.
As a result, you’ll learn what works and what doesn’t with your audience, which you can utilize to inform your email marketing strategy.
9. Watch your email frequency and timing
Sending emails frequently can lead to unsubscribes from your list, but sending emails too rarely can lead your subscribers to ignore them.
The irritating thing is that figuring out this information is usually unique to each company.
You can consider other companies in your industry to see how frequently they’re sending as a start, but eventually, if you test it and make tweaks, your data will inform you what frequency your audience responds to.
10. Make sure the newsletters are consistent with your brand
Newsletters help you connect with people and create brand awareness. So you must ensure all your email newsletters are consistent in content and design. It will make it easy for people to recall your email newsletter and know instantly what to expect from you.
In your content, ensure to only talk about topics related to your domain so that customers learn your newsletter will be about a specific topic.
And in terms of structure, add your brand’s text logo to the newsletter and use your brand colors to make your emails special to your brand.
Both will ensure the readers learn that the newsletter is from you and what it could be.
11. Incorporate Videos to prompt people to open your newsletter
Videos can prompt people to both open and click emails. Viewers find them engaging and an efficient way to convey information quickly.
Videos from your organization are the best to incorporate in your email newsletters (like how-to videos, testimonials, or advice from executives or industry experts).
All of these videos can attract your readers. Plus, they help you tell people why they want to work with your company.
12. Optimize your newsletters for mobile devices
About 81% of people check their emails on their smartphones, so you must ensure that your newsletter looks fine when people open it on their mobile devices.
When you build your campaign, preview what it will look like on mobile devices and change the placement of your images, text, and CTA accordingly. Keep the subject under 35 characters to ensure nothing meaningful gets cut off in mobile view.
13. Schedule and send out your newsletters regularly
Use a content calendar to schedule your newsletters and send them out regularly to your audience. The interval can be anything from daily to weekly to monthly, depending on your business requirements.
By preparing your newsletters well in advance, you can ensure that your content is well-written, the email induces well, and you are on time to send the emails. This will minimize the stress off your shoulders when you create your content, and you won’t have to shuffle to create a decent newsletter.
14. Check everything before you send your campaign
Now that you have completed a newsletter, it’s time to determine if it’s working okay and if there are no problems with its rendering, deliverability, and accessibility.
You can send a test campaign to people to check if the newsletter is useful and how people react. You can improve the final campaign to get better engagement based on the information from this test campaign.
If you utilize an ESP to create your campaign, you can test your campaign, get precise metrics showing its effectiveness, and make modifications with the help of the ESP.
15. Make use of alternative text for the images
Most subscribers may have images disabled on their computers and mobile devices. So, when your email newsletters are opened, subscribers will notice a preview pane with only blank spaces in place of the images.
Therefore, alternative text is important to let them know what they’re missing unless they download images. Moreover, crafting engaging and informative plain text, try employing various colors and fonts.
And if your calls to action are images, it’s extremely important to ensure subscribers can click them, even if images aren’t enabled.
Looking back at our list of 15 effective email newsletter best practices, it’s evident that the success of any email marketing strategy depends on careful planning and execution.
Every email sent should be strategically designed to target a specific audience, have a clear purpose and meaningful content.
A consistent approach will help you to send out compelling emails that build relationships with your subscribers and effectively achieve the marketing goals you’ve set for the campaign.
Utilizing all the tools available to you is also essential in order to ensure maximum impact while helping you reach more people through a variety of channels.