4.6B people will receive emails on a daily basis by 2025, compared to 4 billion users in 2020. This data equals an increase in the potential to sell via email marketing. Just one small detail left – how do you get people to open your emails?
Email open rate is the first step to driving conversions when it comes to email marketing. Higher open rates mean higher interest in your content and eventually a potential increase in sales. And there is no better element that helps to bring the open rate up other than your customer’s feedback.
Before we dive deeper into how customer feedback helps improve the email open rate, let’s see what exactly this rate means.
Email Open Rate in Simple Words
Out of all the emails you have sent to customers, how many were opened? Email open rate is the percentage thereof.
It’s an excellent metric because it shows how effectively you’re talking to your customers. More precisely, it shows how engaging your headlines are that people feel compelled to click on them. The open rate can also be an indicator of loyalty, too. Some people will open an email because they like your brand and want to see what you have to offer.
This metric could also misdirect towards wrong decisions if not evaluated carefully. Clicking on an email subject doesn’t equal reading the contents or clicking any links inside. However, achieving a higher open rate increases another indicator – how many people move forwards in your sales funnel for your eCommerce store.
So, how does customer feedback fit into the picture?
The Importance of Gathering Customer Feedback for Open Rate
Listening to the people that your product or service is intended for is essential on many levels. It helps see where your business is at, what features work best, and which ones need improvement. Generally, it gives a lot of insights into product or service performance.
How does this fit with the open rate?
Here are five reasons why reaping customer’s feedback is important for open rate:
1. Engage with customers
When you simply send out pieces of offers, you’re not engaging with your customers. You're not building a relationship.
While asking your customers to express their feedback, you’re turning your email marketing into a dialogue, which is more productive. You’re also making customers think about your brand, and then leading to profitable conversions. Making it essential to improve not only your sales plan but your marketing plans as well.
This can be as simple as adding a feedback form to an email newsletter — where appropriate — or deliberately crafting emails that ask for opinions via surveys.
2. Understand your customers
Engaging customers to aggregate feedback isn’t enough. The next step is to analyze all this feedback and categorize it into, say, things to appreciate about your clients, things to change about your product, and things to keep in mind.
By carefully going through your customer’s feedback, you get to understand their pain points deeper and know what changes to make in your product. Even using an extra exclamation mark implies a lot about both sides. Show appreciation and attention towards your email list, just as in a real relationship.
3. Product improvement
Whether or not your clients understand every little detail and every feature of your product or service, they interact with it more than anyone else. They’re in the frontline of your business using your product in their everyday life. They’ve experienced all the good and bad parts of it and give worthy insights you’re unable to find elsewhere.
Based on their feedback you know what to fix in your product, or if anything even needs fixing.
4. Obtain testimonials, reviews, referrals
Your customer’s feedback can be easily repurposed into various pieces of content to convert even more customers. We’re talking here about referrals, reviews, and testimonials to mention on your articles or social media content.
These attract sales like magic because it’s social proof. And they are more valuable than anything you can say about yourself — people are prone to making choices based on recommendations.
5. Evaluate and get better
Customer feedback should be used as a reference point from your brand to do things better. And this means testing new features according to what your customers suggest and seeking their feedback each time you do it. This helps to get better at providing a service.
So how does all this relate to email open rate? Knowing your customers better, doesn’t only help you improve on your products and services. It also helps offer them the content they want to see and read. Moreover, by analyzing responses you’ll be able to tailor your offers and increase the click rate as well.
How to Collect Customer Feedback
Below are some ways to collect customer feedback quickly and efficiently.
1. Use an email client to collect feedback conveniently
Why an email client specifically? Because you can set up an email account dedicated to collecting feedback so all the data is in one place. This makes it easier to find feedback, analyze, and categorize it. And you can manage this account along with your other work accounts — something that’s not so convenient with webmail.
An email client also helps to gather customer’s feedback thanks to the wide variety of tools it comes with. You can track the emails you send to your customers and see their reactions. By integrating other apps like FollowUp.cc, you also get reminders about emails that need follow ups, making it easier to manage the process for you and your team.
2. Use long form-based surveys
Surveys remain easy to create and manage. Therefore, they’re pretty effective at gathering customer’s feedback.
Long surveys allow collecting more useful data. Though make sure that you don’t send this type to new customers – they need time to form an opinion and more loyalty to actually sit through a longer survey.
Jot down 3–10 questions regarding your product and email them to your clients. Focus on making the questions as clear as possible to make sure they bide till the last line. Provide options (checklist, checkbox or drop-down options) to make answering easy.
If people feel like the survey is going to be work they won’t do it or answer honestly just to get it over and done with, so to avoid that make it easy to answer as well.
3. Create quick in-app surveys
Displaying short pop-ups with quick questions while the user is interacting gathers invaluable feedback easily. It’s also a better format for new customers that notes their experience on the go.
Still, don’t overdo it with the length of these surveys, otherwise the customer will get bored and exit the app.
4. Make phone calls
Yes, many people prefer a text. But phone calls are still closing deals so a good script will help you keep a client on the line long enough to find out their feelings towards your product.
Seemingly an old-fashioned method to gather customer feedback, phone calls make it easy to understand customer’s experience with your service or product. However, these shouldn’t sound like sales calls. Keep your questions short and concise.
5. Transform your transactional emails
The email sent after your customer makes a purchasing decision has the highest open rates. After all, we're prone to check our transactional emails to confirm that our payment has gone through successfully. Use this as an opportunity to spark a conversation with your customers. Ask a question in relation to what they’ve bought, or touch the pain points this product resolves.
Some email marketing tools allow adding dynamic elements to your emails where you can, for example, add a text box where customers can share their experience.
6. Send net promoter score surveys
This is probably the simplest, time-efficient way to reap customer feedback. It takes the least time for you and your customers. These surveys, known as NPS, ask customers rating of your product or brand with a score from 0-10. This method works perfectly since it takes a little amount of time to be completed.
Source: Drive Research
How Customer Feedback Affects Email Open Rates
By basing your emails around your customer’s feedback you’re much more likely to boost up the open rate than you would by guessing which subject might perform better.
For example, you can send a survey about your newsletter where you sneak in a question about using emojis in subject lines. More say they don’t like smileys in their inboxes. Or your send a survey about a new feature release and respondents say they want changes. Next time you send an email about improvements – you can say "you asked, we listened!"
That will help your audience feel heard and appreciated. You'll also get to:
Know your audience better
You may have a clear description of your ideal client, but how much do you know about your subscribers? The feedback of your mailing list subscribers matters because they’re highly targeted. Experiment with short surveys and polls that help to complete the picture of your real client.
Find the perfect timing
Besides crafting an email people would want to read, when you send it is equally important. Your emails could easily end up with a low open rate if sent when customers are sleeping or working. Sendinblue suggests the best time to send out emails for eCommerce brands is Wednesday around 10:00 AM, but nothing is definitive. Do a few tests to find the perfect time your customers are more active.
Test well-aimed subject lines
Don’t limit testing only to finding the right time. Test subject lines constantly because they’re the first thing customers see. Experiment with personalization, subject line length, emojis, or offers. And you don’t have to risk your whole list with these emails. Test different variants to a small segment of your list and use those learnings to continue testing.
Email open rate is an important metric that determines how effectively your brand is capturing customers’ attention. This metric ties strongly to customers’ feedback because only by knowing their true thoughts on your product you’ll be able to improve.
There are several ways to collect customer’s feedback, many of which we mentioned above. However, collecting your most interested audience's feedback is what matters, and this audience likely resides in your email list.
Regularly collecting and analyzing feedback help you improve on your product or service, but also on the content you send. All together, customers will be more inclined to open and read an email from you.