What’s coming next for email marketing this 2016? Thus far, things are looking pretty good. Responsive designs are becoming more present, quality emails abound and a wealth of new strategies are being developed by web marketers to make sure their business can live up to the competition. Interactive email functionalities have been limited to email carousels, live Twitter feeds and embedded videos; and that’s not all. Increasingly more brands are stepping out from the shadow to allow subscribers to fill out their shopping sessions – customize orders, view products and decide on the size of their purchase – within an email.
Does this mean that we’ll be able to shop for things within emails without ever clicking on a website landing page? Probably, although we’re not entirely sure whether customers will like this new approach or not; we’ll just have to wait and see. In the meantime, check out some other pioneering email marketing trends that will go mainstream this 2016.
Mobile devices are favorite gadgets for opening emails
Throughout 2015, 49% of average consumers used their smart devices (smartphone, tablet, iPad) to open emails. According to a recent report issued by Litmus Email Analytics, webmail will continue to decline. Very few people today still use desktop computers even when they’re at home. Laptops and notebooks have taken the lead because they’re affordable, lightweight and easy to carry around the house. Another emerging trend is targeting the use of cloud-based software, which will keep disrupting on-premise software.
Responsive design is ruling email marketing
Certain companies have been extremely stubborn and refuse to adapt their websites to new technologies. Those that don’t want to shift from conventional email to mobile will be left behind. In 2014, a lot of marketers finally understood that responsive design was the key to a successful campaign. Mobile friendly design strategies are a must, and this year we’ll see increasingly more companies take the leap and adopt responsive email design. 41% of marketers switched to responsive design in 2015, so we’re only expecting this percentage to hit 60% by the end of 2016.
Email marketing will go through a 2nd coming of age this year
This year will be extremely competitive for email marketing. Brands around the world are starting to commit to new, subscriber-centric strategies. Brands that refuse to go high-tech will probably hit rock-bottom because old-fashioned campaigns are not longer profitable. The rise of social media trends and mainstream use of smart gadgets is compelling start-ups to rethink their tactics and do things differently for once.
Macro industries are going through some serious changes. Email marketing in particular, is an evolving industry that’s shifting towards highly performing channels. As the overall experience improves and many people go mobile, email marketing will soon enough be completely redefined. Some trends we’ll be seeing this year:
- Interactive emails to improve shopping experiences
- Brand new email rendering engines from Outlook
- No more animated emojis in Gmail subject lines
- Rebirth of email
- Responsive email design
- Growing email volume – we’re mainly referring to real, legitimate emails
- Triggered emails will increase in sophistication; triggers will additionally be using external data sources to make them appear unified and seamless
- Email return-on-investment will keep improving because it works and it is cost-efficient.
At this point, email marketing is going through an integration wave, with ESPs being merged into the resource planning suites of enterprises and customer oriented relationship management. It is no longer just a vital digital marketing channel as increasingly more companies are looking at email marketing as a top data source for analytics. Current advances have managed to persuade enterprises that mail marketing deserves attention, and that it hasn’t died yet. In fact, new tactics are on the verge of proving that the industry is once cool and appropriate to use.
We’re expecting email marketing to do great things in 2016, especially now that start-ups and enterprises are willing to change their business mantra and go mobile. Embracing advanced technology is a must; and whether we like it or not, companies today can’t survive if they don’t adapt. When used right, email marketing can be extremely powerful. It’s all about being open to change and being willing to listen to what it has to offer.
Christopher Austin is the writer to this article. He is a regular contributor to many sites and mainly focuses on business and marketing related topics. He also writes for a site http://romax.co.uk/ offering direct mail marketing services.