By now you have probably heard the term “mobile responsive” in connection with web design.  The ever expanding number of devices people are using to access online data demand web developers create sites which intuitively respond.  If I am using a smart phone, and you are using a tablet, each of us need to be able to quickly find what we need from the site.

While everyone is talking about mobile responsive websites, I haven’t seen a lot of conversation yet about mobile responsive email. Here’s the reason why you should be thinking about that now.

50% of email is opened on a mobile device

That number has been increasing rapidly in the last few years with no signs of slowing down. It was just 10% in 2011. So what does this mean to you? It means that email newsletter template you designed just two years ago probably won’t cut it any more. Ideally you should be creating your email campaigns with a tool which has mobile responsive templates, like Constant Contact. But even if your template is not completely responsive, here are a few simple design changes you can make which will make your email mobile friendly even if your theme is not completely responsive.

  1. Keep it short – Your readers are browsing your email on the go. Maybe they are on line at the grocery store, or waiting for their next appointment at a coffee shop. They just have a few minutes so they want to see relevant information at a glance. Give them the highlights with links to more information if they have time.
  2. Switch to a one column format –  The sidebar is a hold over from the days of printed newsletters. Don’t make your readers scroll left and right to see the whole page. On mobile devices, we want to scroll up and down.  
  3. Make calls to action clear –  Instead of burying a text link in a paragraph, consider a contrasting color or even a solid button which says read more or click here.
  4. Avoid small fonts, they get even smaller on a smart phone – Don’t make your readers fumble around for their reading glasses or try to enlarge the screen to read your update. They won’t. Your text needs to be at least 11 points. And if you want headlines to jump out they need to be larger, typically 16 – 22 points.
  5. Use images carefully – If I have to adjust my screen size to view your image, I will probably skip it.

Still not sure any if this matters? Here’s one more statistic which might change your mind:

30% of users UNSUBSCRIBE 

after receiving a mobile email which doesn’t look good.

Don’t let that happen to you. It is time to update your email template.  If you need help, give us a call or check out our 6 Steps to Email Success. 

Source material for this post comes from Constant Contact.

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