As a sales person, you rely on email in your prospecting efforts. You write and send out email after email after email. But did you know that prospects open fewer than 24% of the sales emails they receive? Considering how many emails you send out to prospects and how often you’re ignored, you probably already knew that the number is low. You’re used to being ignored. You know that the sales email is a long shot. It’s often not much better than a cold call. But what other options do you really have in the creation of new business? So you keep emailing.
But what if we told you that you don’t have to just accept being ignored as part of the job? What if we told you that you could increase your open and response rates, with one simple change? All you need to do is write the ideal length. When you email smarter and avoid emailing mistakes, you can improve the results of your emailing efforts.
Optimal Email Length
You might have heard varying opinions on the optimal length of the sales email. It’s a much debated topic. According to new data from Bommerang, though, you should be capping your emails at 50 to 125 words. Emails at this length had the best response rate, at just over 50%. If you want to earn a response, then being short and direct with the sales email is the way to go.
Think about it: Your prospects are busy. What makes you think they have time to read the essay you just wrote in a sales email? If they see long, drawn-out paragraphs in an email, especially from a sender they don’t know, they’re not going to bother reading it all—they simply don’t have the time to.
Too Short, Too Bad
Don’t take the concept of short and direct too literally, though. Being too concise will actually reduce your response rate to 36% if you write 10 words or less. Sending off just a few words to prospects might make you seem lazy.
What about the Subject Line?
Though the length of your sales email content matters, particularly for a response rate, the length of your subject line might matter even more. The subject line can make or break the deal when it comes to open rates, not only how you write it, but how long you take to say it. And as you know, your email needs to be opened before prospects will even consider responding.
So what’s the magic number that will help you entice recipients to open your emails? Those with fewer than 10 characters saw an open rate of 58%. Although this is an awesome open rate, in reality, it can be almost impossible to always keep your subject lines below 10 characters. It’s just not enough.
The most important word count to remember is to keep it under 80 characters, because most email servers will cut off your text after that and hit you with ellipses instead. But to make sure that your recipients read the full subject line, keeping it under 50 characters is best.
Other Sales Email Tips to Consider
Want to increase your chances of getting a response even more? Then consider how you’re writing your content, too.
- Content that expresses moderate positive or negative emotion evokes a better response rate than totally neutral emails—but too much emotion isn’t good either.
- Writing your emails at a third-grade level will also improve your results. Don’t get too fancy or verbose with your language. Keep it simple and straightforward.
- Free-flowing emails can resonate better with recipients. Write like you’re emailing a friend, not a business acquaintance. You don’t want to sound like a robot.
Using at least one question, and up to three, within your email content can increase your response rate by up to 50%.