Best Time to Send an Email: Ultimate Guide

People have tried to figure out the best time to send emails for decades.

It’s a great question because your target audience is busy. They don’t have the time to read your email immediately when it hits their inbox.

But at the same time, you don’t want to invest time in creating the best emails only to get a low open and reply rate.

This is the dilemma facing sales, recruitment, HR, marketing professionals, etc.

Sometimes, sending the email just at the right time might change the trajectory of your ROI big time. Or it might be what you need to seal that promising cold lead or hire that dream team. And I could go on.

In short, writing the best email is half the real job. You also need to know the best time to send it.

Luckily, that’s what we’ll be targeting in this guide. We’ve looked at tens of past studies, analyzed them, and found definite answers that will greatly help you.

Let’s get started.

Why Sending Emails at the Right Time Matters

The general goal is to get your recipient to read your email and reply as soon as possible, right?

Well, that’s easier said than done.

More studies have found that it takes longer for people to reply to emails. While the recommended response time is one hour, only 23% of your audience can manage it.

The other 77% are comfortable replying after a few hours to a few days. And the open rate goes down to 1% after 24 hours.

There are two justifiable reasons for this trend:

  1. Checking emails constantly is distracting
  2. Responding in a hurry creates half-baked responses, which leads to more emails.

But here’s where it gets messier.

Your target audience receives approximately 100 -120 emails per day. They don’t have time to go through all that.

Therefore, sending an email at the right time isn’t only a way to pass your message at the perfect time.

It’s also a way of helping your audience avoid cluttering their inbox. And most importantly, it’s the perfect method to beat your competitors who also want a slice of your recipient’s inbox.

5 Factors To Consider In Choosing The Best Time to Send Emails

Before we check the best time to send emails, let’s first look at some factors that will help you determine it.

factors to consider when choosing best time to send an email

1. The Type of Industry

Different industries have different open rates, as seen in this image.

Source

This may depend on a couple of factors.

For example, as you can see on the chat, industries with high open rates don’t promote much. A good example is the education industry, with an average open rate of 28.5%.

It makes sense as educational institutions must communicate to students and parents about studies. They aren’t selling or promoting a product hence the high open rate.

The retail industry has the lowest open rate because most email marketing campaigns are promotional.

Therefore, understanding your niche and audience gives an overview of how you should structure your email campaign.

2. Recipient’s Device

More people have access to mobile phones than ever before.

This means that more people find it easy to read emails on their phones. Studies show that 85% of email users use smartphones to access their emails.

However, the irony is that only 25% of email campaigns are optimized for mobile users. The result is a bad user experience prompting subscribers to delete 42.3% of their emails.

Knowing what device your target audience uses helps you determine the best time they will likely use it.

For example, if you’re targeting busy professionals with white-collar jobs, you can send emails from 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm. That’s the time they go out for lunch.

They probably use their mobile devices to surf the internet as they don’t carry their laptops to the restaurant.

3. Target Audience’s Demographic

Your target audience demographic in email outreach relates to age and gender.

For example, if you’re targeting the older generation who go to work, they will likely open their emails before 9:00 am.

The younger generation prefers to check emails from noon to the afternoon. Again, if you’re targeting working mothers, your time for sending emails shouldn’t be the same as single women without children.

4. Email Frequency

On average, marketers send 1 to 2 emails every week.

It’s the recommended threshold because the more you send emails, the less your audience sees them as valuable.

But you might need to send more emails in unique cases. For example, if you’re a course creator and someone subscribes to your email list, you might have a series of emails every day for a few days before you go back to the traditional 1 to 2 weekly emails.

Nevertheless, study to find the best email frequency that works for you and your subscribers.

5. Nature of your Product/Service

Your product or service targets different people who have different goals.

For instance, if you’re offering a B2B product, you’d want to focus on weekdays like Tuesdays when your subscribers are at work.

You can’t send a promotional email to sell your email outreach software on a Saturday evening. The marketing manager you’re targeting will likely be at a bar with friends.

On the flip side, sending emails on weekends is far better than on weekdays if you’re selling services in the entertainment niche.

Best Time to Send an Email Marketing Campaign

We reviewed studies from Hubspot, GetResponse, CampaignMonitor, Workstream, and more to get a definite answer.

These studies analyzed billions of emails. And surprisingly, the results were somehow similar across the board.

So we’ll review the findings in two models: best time to send emails during the week and the day.

Best Time To Send Emails During The Day

It’s the tendency for people who go to work to start their day by clearing any email task. Most studies claim that 8:00 am to 12:00 pm is the best time.

best time to send an email by hour

However, this doesn’t mean morning hours are the only option.

Where does that leave us?

Noon time. Another study by Wordstream found that 1 – 2 pm is also a good spot. Most of your subscribers have lunch at that time and will likely check their phones for updates.

Still, other studies found that evening time from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm is also the best fit. Why? It’s the time when people commute from work and are more likely to spend time on their phones.

In short, there’s no definite answer to the best time to send emails. It all goes back to the type of your audience.

Make sure you do a few A/B tests to get the best time that resonates with them. For example, you can send your emails at 8:00 am and 6:00 pm on the same day of the following week.

Once done, compare and contrast the data to understand how your audience behaved. But don’t be surprised if it lies in one of the stipulated time frames.

Best Time To Send Emails During The Week

Out of all the studies, three main days were the best days to send emails.

That’s Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, with Tuesday as the best overall.

Why is Tuesday the best overall?

There isn’t a definite reason why Tuesday carried the day. However, some marketers believe sending emails immediately after the weekend doesn’t go well. That rules out Monday.

As a result, emails sent on Tuesday record the highest open rates, which results in better CTR and more traffic.

Thursday was the second best day. It perfectly suits marketers who want to send two emails weekly. They can do that on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Wednesdays, the middle of the week, is ideal for those who only send one email weekly.

How to Create a Robust Email Schedule That Fits Your Audience

Again, as said earlier, getting to know the best time for sending emails depends primarily on your audience.

A recent Hubspot survey found that 40% of customers say they have 50 unread emails in their inbox because they don’t have time. So winning in email marketing should start by getting your best spot for sending emails.

Once you’ve done that, Let automation work for you.

Enter email schedule. Email scheduling helps you to send emails at the right time, which is a good fit for recipients in different time zones.

For example, imagine that you’ve done the study and determined that the best time your audience will likely engage with your email is 5:00 PM.

So you launch a cold email outreach, but you realize that 70% of your subscribers will receive the emails at 5:00 AM Pacific Standard. You forgot that your time zone is GMT (London, Dublin)

You don’t need a full-suite email marketing tool to create an email schedule. Luckily, that’s what Right Inbox does. It has a special feature to schedule emails without breaking a sweat.

With the feature, you can write emails at your most convenient time and schedule them to be sent later.

For example, if you like working late at night, you can write your email at 11:00 pm and schedule it to be sent at 9:00 am on the next day.

Our free plan allows you to schedule up to ten emails per month. You can subscribe to a paid plan for only $9.95 per month if you want more.

The paid plan offers additional features like mail merge, email tracking, reminders, templates, email sequences, and more.

How to get High Email Open rates

You’ve done an excellent job determining the best time to send an email. But that’s winning 50% of the battle.

The other 50% is increasing your open rates.

Here are our tested and proven tips you can use to increase open rates.

Email Segmentation and Personalization

If you’re still not personalizing your emails in 2022, you’ll be lucky to get a 21.33% open rate, as said earlier.

Here’s the sweet spot. Marketers who send personalized emails increase their open rate by 26%.

Again, Right Inbox has a powerful feature for personalized mass emails. You can create many emails and customize them to keep that personal touch intact.

The best part? You can connect the email schedule tool with mail merge to send bulk emails at a specific time.

And if you want to send a series of emails, you can create follow-up sequences to ensure no one’s left through the cracks.

Email segmentation goes deeper than personalization.

In simple terms, email segmentation is the division of email subscribers into smaller groups and sending emails that highly resonate with them.

You can segment your subscribers by gender, geographical area, age, and preferences.

For example, let’s assume you’ve divided them by gender. You might send your female subscribers a happy women’s day special email and do the same for your male subscribers.

Here’s an example.

Image source

Create Compelling Headlines and Email Content

Below are three previewed email headlines.

Which one would you click first?

If you said B, then you’re right. The headline sucks you into the story, and you suddenly want to know how Mixpanel achieved such a high retention rate.

The other two are too general and don’t have exciting touch.

Note that your subscribers receive tens of emails daily but only have two eyes and minimal time.

Emails with the best headline and epic content take their attention. If you can’t create high-quality emails on your own, consider hiring an expert email copywriter.

Delete Some Email Subscribers

This might sound less popular, but it’s highly recommended when you need to increase open rates.

But before you do that, make sure inactive subscribers are the people you want to delete. Here’s why:

  • You’ll spend more money to pay for the email marketing service.
  • They decrease your open rates.
  • They hurt your sender’s reputation.

To avoid the stress, remove them and hunt down new subscribers who will be interested in what you offer. That’s the true tribe that you want to leverage.

Conclusion

All the studies done to find the best time to send emails don’t have a specific answer.

But still, you can use their findings as a foundation for your analysis. That’s how you determine an answer that resonates with your recipients.

Take your time to create high-quality emails, and send them on different days and times during the week for a month.

Put down your open and CTR. Rinse and repeat the process twice. You’ll come up with the perfect time.

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