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Mobile email open rates increase 34pc: study

Mobile email growth coming at expense of Web mail:

Marketers need to address growth in mobile email

Mobile email open rates increased 34 percent in the past six months, per a study from Return Path.

In particular, email opens from iPad devices skyrocketed by increasing 73 percent. The “Mobile, webmail, desktops: Where are we viewing email now?” study is evidence that consumers are increasingly relying on their mobile devices to access emails while on the go.

“While not surprising, the study sheds light on the impact mobile is having on email viewership and unveils some interesting findings that confirm our predictions,” said Tom Sather, director of professional services at Return Path, New York.

“Certainly we know smartphone and tablet usage is gaining market share, and we know that where email is viewed is heavily influenced by when,” he said. 

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Mobile mail
The Return Path data was taken from April to September and its results were compared to the same study that took place from October 2010 to March 2011.

Compared to mobile, desktop email opens dropped by 9.5 percent. Similarly, email open rates via webmail decreased by 11 percent.

The study also looked at the days of the week and which ones were most effective for mobile email opens.

Mondays were the weakest days for mobile email opens, which is when desktop was primarily used by consumers to check email.

During the weekends, mobile email open rates spike with more than 15 percent of emails being opened on Sunday.

Despite the findings, Mr. Sather recommends that companies look at their specific users to see when their emails are being opened to develop a strategy.

Overall, mobile accounted for 23 percent of email opens.

Desktop received 33 percent and webmail generated 44 percent.

Apple’s iPad 2 also played a large role in the increase of mobile email opens. Email views on the iPad increased 12 percent between March and April, which is when the device was launched.

Mobile industry
The study also looked at which industries accessed their email on mobile devices.

Twenty-seven percent of consumers that work in social networking and entertainment careers opened their email on mobile devices.

Twenty-six percent of publishing professionals opened their email via mobile.

The Return Path study is proof that email plays a critical role in mobile marketing and needs to be seriously considered by brands and companies.

A study from Knotice also recently pointed to the effectiveness of mobile email (see story).

“People are addicted to email and it has become more relevant than ever before as consumption continues to grow on more platforms,” Mr. Sather said.

“Email is everywhere you want your message to be so it’s really important for marketers to make sure to optimize their email subject lines for all platforms, including mobile, desktop and webmail,” he said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York

Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Marketer. Reach her at lauren@mobilemarketer.com.

 
Related content: Research, Return Path, email, mobile marketing, mobile, Tom Sather

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