From Kelly Forst July 27, 2021
Discover the best time to send email to your subscribers. Use this knowledge to increase open rates and increase results.
You may have heard it a million times. But it’s true: there is no best time to send email.
Because at its core is email communication. And communication requires two parts: the sender and the receiver.
And every email has a unique group of recipients. Every audience is different.
And if the recipient isn’t in the mood to process your message, you might as well be talking to yourself. Like any form of communication, your email will have a greater impact if you use timing to your advantage.
In this post, we take a closer look at how email send times affect your overall email marketing performance and how you can optimize send times for success.
That’s what we’ll cover in this post:
- What’s the best time to send email?
- What’s the best day to send email?
- How do I find the best time to send email?
What’s the best time to send email?
The best time to send an email is 5:16 p.m. EST.
Or at least if your name is Seth Godin. Seth emails at this exact time almost every day.
But your name is not Seth Godin.
Seth found out that early morning is the time to reach his audience. What works for Seth, however, may not work for everyone.
And there is the catch …
The best time to send email is different for each audience
You need to know your audience like the back of your hand:
It is important to know:
- Who is your audience
- What are their behaviors
- What motivates them
- How you fit in to help them achieve their goals
For example, if you’re a nutrition coach and want to optimize email times and days to get more sales from your ebook, here are some things to consider:
People starting a new routine may feel most motivated in the morning when they have less decision fatigue.
On the other hand, if you offer business consulting services, your optimal shipping times and days may differ:
Your audience may be working on their sideline at night or on weekends. So if you take into account the times they are signed in and watch out, you can get better results.
Ultimately, it comes down to thinking about what you are asking people to do and when they are most likely to be in the mood to do it.
We know it is difficult to hear “it depends” when you’re looking for a quick answer. Therefore, consider the following findings from a meta-analysis carried out by Co-Schedule:
- The best time to send emails is 6 or 10 a.m. This is because many people tend to check email when they first wake up or after getting used to it in the morning.
- The best time to send emails in the afternoon is 2pm or 8pm. This is because people tend to check their inboxes for an afternoon distraction before focusing on the work day. They also check emails before going to bed.
What’s the best day to send email?
Just as finding the optimal airtime depends heavily on your unique audience, the same goes for finding the best day to send email.
Consider the examples of the Nutritionist and Business Consultant above:
The nutrition audience may feel down about their decisions over the weekend, so Monday can be a good time to come up with a solution (e.g. your e-book).
In the meantime, the advisory audience may be inundated with email on Mondays and may be more likely to respond to a query in the middle of the week.
Different audience. Different goals. Different optimal days for sending emails.
However, if you’re looking for a good place to start, the same Co-Schedule meta-analysis offers:
- Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday are the best days to send email, with Tuesday being by far the best day of the week to send.
- Some studies show that Saturday and Sunday are the worst days of the week to send email as people tend to ignore their inbox on the weekend. However, others show that the highest click and open rates are seen today.
Optimize your email sending times with split tests
When people reply to an email, they most likely do so within two minutes of opening it.
From then on, the likelihood of a reaction begins to wane. If someone doesn’t take action within 48 hours, they likely won’t.
This means that if you don’t send email, you may be missing out on important opportunities when people are most likely to be ready to respond to your calls to action.
With that in mind, let’s talk about how to determine your optimal airtime and day.
Since everyone’s optimal airtime is different, it’s best to do a few experiments to find out when your target audience is most likely to open your email.
Knowing your audience, you can probably guess when you think they’ll be most excited to engage with your topic. But of course you want to test your assumptions.
Make a conscious decision to plan your next emails at different times and on different days. Run a few different split tests to see if the same email content produces different results on different days.
To split the sending times of email tests, do the following:
- Create 2 versions of the email you want to send.
- Set up a split test with your email service provider. It should be a 50/50 split to ensure that half of your segment gets version A and version B.
- Schedule your email for the times or days you want to test.
- Analyze your results after a few days. This will give you an idea of the best time to send your email.
Keep in mind that you will likely need to test a few different emails to be confident of your results.
Ready to find your best time to send email?
AWeber lets you break down almost every aspect of your email – subject lines, send times, copies, templates, buttons, and more! This gives you the opportunity to optimize your email strategy.
Sign up for AWeber Pro today to unlock split tests.