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Most brands send little or no mobile-optimised email marketing

Optimising emails for the mobile channel is still not being given the priority it should, finds new research. The Adestra/Econsultancy Email Marketing Industry Census 2013* surveyed over 1300 marketers and shows more emails are being read on mobiles – unsurprising given the growth in popularity of this sector – but optimisation is still poor or non-existent.

71% of companies have a ‘non-existent’ or ‘basic’ email optimisation strategy for mobile devices. While optimisation has shown a slight improvement from last year, there is still a long way to go.

Marketers recognise the need to make their emails “˜mobile-friendly’ and say it’s a key focus. Both companies and agencies agree that they need to focus on creating mobile optimised emails in the coming 12 months – creating ‘mobile-friendly emails’ was in the top 3 priorities for companies (22% said this), the largest change since last year, and top priority for agencies at 31%, again showing highest growth in a year.

Looking at the proportion of emails being read on mobile devices, there is still a massive quantity of unknown data. One third of marketers have no idea if their campaigns are being read on smartphones, tablets or other mobile devices. While this shows a significant improvement over last year (48% answered don’t know in 2012), it shows a lack of behavioural understanding and lack of tracking of this growing channel.

Without this data, marketers don’t know if, or how, they should be optimising their email. For those that can track the device used, 14% of companies now say that a large percentage (40%) of emails are read on mobile devices, up from just 4% in a year.

While mobile marketing is rated lower than many of the popular channels for delivering ROI (eg email marketing, SEO, Affiliate marketing etc), 40% still say it provides an “˜excellent’ or “˜good’ return. Mobile has seen the largest relative ROI increase of any channel since 2008 – up 22%. It’s a growth channel, and it’s now delivering ROI, this is a channel to watch.

*This is the seventh annual Email Marketing Industry Census, and is the largest survey of its type in the UK. More than 1,300 respondents from a mixture of in-house teams, email service providers (ESPs) and digital marketing agencies took part, which took the form of an online survey in January and February 2013.

You can download a full copy of the report for free here >