Commentary

Email Testing Layers Peeled Back

According to the eROI newest study on the Use of Analytics in Email Marketing Campaigns, of the 37% of marketers who don't test their email campaigns, 33% say it's because they do not know how, 27% say they don't have time and 13% say their platform doesn't have testing capabilities. For those that are testing, 85.2% test subject lines, 54.8% test calls to action, 50.9% test designs, 49.1% test copy, 41.7% test offers, 36% test timing of campaigns.

With 73% of marketers planning to increase email as a priority in their future marketing plans, eROI set out to discover why more than a third of marketers are not testing their campaigns, and for those that are testing, what is being tested and its perceived relative importance.   

advertisement

advertisement

The study notes that in a 2006 Marketing Sherpa article by Anne Holland survey results proved that  testing increases ROI. The responses show that "in every case more than 50% of  marketers improved ROI (even if only moderately) by testing." The current eROI study uncovered some of the main reasons for not testing.

Reasons Some Marketers Are Not Testing Email Campaigns

Reason

% of Respondents

Don'tknow How

32.84% 

My Campaign Timeline Is Too Short

27.36% 

Platform Doesn't Have Testing Capabilites

13.43% 

Other

11.94% 

I Don't See The Value In It

8.46% 

Platform Doesn't Have Capabilities I Want

5.97%

Source: eROI Testing in Email Campaigns, July 2009

For those that are testing, they are testing a wide variety of elements including design, frequency, calls to action and day/time sent. The report shows this breakdown for email content testing:

  • 85.2% test subject lines
  • 54.8% test calls to action
  • 50.9% test designs
  • 49.1% test copy
  • 41.7% test offers
  • 36.8% test timing of campaigns

The survey unveiled the latest trends in testing time of day releases, with 49.4% currently find sending mid-day (10am-2pm) to be best, while start of the business day (6AM - 10AM) showed to be second best:

Time of Day For Testing (% of Respondents)

Day Part

% Preferred

Mid-Day

49.4% 

Start Of Business Day

35.06% 

Early Morning

9.09% 

End Of Business Day

3.90% 

Early Evening

2.60%

Source: eROI Testing in Email Campaigns, July 2009

34.91% of marketers that test timing are testing frequency. Of those, 33.3% send weekly, 28.21% send bi-monthly, 28.21% send as necessary (no set frequency) and the rest are  divided equally between sending quarterly, daily, more than once a week and monthly.

Frequency That Email Marketers Test Their Email Campaigns (% of Respondents Testing Frequency)

Frequency

% Testing

Weekly

33.33% 

As necessary

28.21% 

Bi-monthly

28.21% 

Daily

2.56% 

Monthly

2.56% 

More than once a week

2.56% 

Quarterly

2.56%

Source: eROI Testing in Email Campaigns, July 2009

As a check list and comparison to individual practice, the study includes an appendix that shows statistics on which variables are most often tested by marketers on each element of their emails. The report concludes that the reader might find a new testing opportunity for the next campaign.

Variables Tested By Marketers (% of Those Testing Each Element)

Element Tested

% Testing

Subject line 

   Tone/personality

40.81% 

   Length

33.55% 

   Personalization

20.09% 

   Other

5.56%

Body copy 

   Length

29.71% 

   Headlines

28.29% 

   Tone

20.00% 

   Personalization

19.14% 

   Other

2.86%

Offer variables 

   Limited (time or quantity)

28.69% 

   Percentage vs. Dollar

25.8% 

   Perceived value vs. Price

20.08% 

   Free vs. Reduced

14.75% 

   "Live" content

4.51% 

   Other

6.45%

Call to action  

   Type (links, buttons, banners, text only)

29.06% 

   Copy

26.85% 

   Placement

26.60%  

   Number ofplacements

16.26% 

   Other

1.23%

Design/image variables 

   Image placement

25.39% 

   Amount of imagery

17.15% 

   Complexity

16.93% 

   Background

11.58% 

   Accent color/shading

9.58% 

   Text only

9.58% 

   Dynamic Imagery

8.24% 

   Other

1.56%

Other elements 

   Text vs.html

22.58% 

   From name

15.75% 

   None

13.47% 

   Pre-headers

12.9% 

   From address

10.44% 

   Alt-tags

7.78% 

   Emailwidth

7.78% 

   Footers

7.59% 

   Other

1.56%

Source: eROI Testing in Email Campaigns, July 2009

Please go here to get PDF file of the complete survey. 

  

Next story loading loading..