UK retailers not paying attention to email marketing

UK retailers are not paying attention to simple measures with their emails that could help increase click-throughs and online sales, it has been suggested.

According to the annual benchmark study Hitting the Mark, 71 per cent of those companies involved in the research did not use a personal greeting, which is proven to significantly increase open rates.

Meanwhile, just 29 per cent asked for relevant interests when signing people up so that they can target emails more effectively.

“Many of the best practice guidelines outlined in the report are very easy to implement and by making these simple changes and improvements, retailers can start seeing some incredibly positive results,” said Tink Taylor, dotMailer’s business development director and a member of the Direct Marketing Association’s Email Marketing Council.

The top performer in the study was Marks & Spencer, with H Samuel in second.

Richard Rushing, recently writing for Email Insider, suggested that focusing on value can help win over non-responders to emails from companies.

Email marketers should put themselves in consumers shoes

To build a strong foundation for an email marketing campaign a company should imagine themselves in their customer’s shoes, it is suggested.

Steve Adams, writing for Online Media Daily, says companies need to plan before jumping into email marketing.

He recommends firms ask themselves what kind of information would get attention and make people open, read and then act on the messages.

Mr Adams advises companies to ask whether their customers would want coupons or special promotions and whether or not they would want valuable information they can use.

He also asserts that assembling an email list can be a positive step.

“In addition to name and email address, think about other information that could help you target your email campaigns,” Mr Adams adds.

Earlier this month, claimed that retailers in the UK are not using simple measures in their email marketing campaigns that could increase click-throughs and online sales.

It revealed that 71 per cent of the companies it looked into did not personalise their emails.

Email marketing to become tougher

Email marketers will have their work cut out next year as potential customers find their inboxes flooded, a new report has suggested.

Online marketing experts predict that people may well be put off opening messages because of the amount they are receiving.

“On average, we expect open rates, click-through rates and conversion rates will decline in 2009 as subscribers’ inboxes are flooded with bad email from marketers trying to stay afloat,” said Morgan Stewart, director of research and strategy at the company.

He said that this should be a warning for online marketers that if they want to communicate through email, “it will be more important than ever to deliver relevant, timely information to customers in a way that honours the individual preferences of each subscriber”.

Research published by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) this month claimed that email advertising, along with search marketing, made more regulation breaches than any other form of online marketing.

However, the industry as a whole was found to be adhering to the self-regulatory rules.