People are flooded with tons of emails every day. Unfortunately, we don’t have the time to absorb it all, nor do we necessarily want to! However, as an email marketer, the chance of your email being ignored is high unless you have a great email subject line. Your email subject line is the first, and possibly last, impression you make on a reader. Even though subject lines are a small part of your message, they are one of the most essential parts. According to statistics from Convince & Convert, 35% of email recipients open an email based on the subject line alone. In today’s blog post, we will be covering 4 tips to improve your email subject line. But, before we get started, it’s important to know what should stay away from first. The list of keywords below will be sure to put you in the junk folder:


Be Clear

People like to know what they are clicking on, and if the email doesn’t follow up on what the subject line promised, they will feel deceived. Therefore, you must be clear with your email subject line. A recipient will read the email subject line to determine if the rest of the email is worth their time or not. Straightforward, descriptive subject lines generally do better than cheesy lines. However, this does not mean you can’t be creative or clever with your word choice. Even small changes can make a difference. You could use “Sale: Prices Slashed 30% This Week!” instead of “30% Off Entire Week”.

Watch the Length

While it is important to make your subject line clear, it is also a good idea to keep it short and sweet. Research shows that subject lines fewer than 10 characters long had a higher open rate of 58%. Subject lines that are longer could get cut-off, especially when the email is seen on a mobile device. Outlook only allows around 42 characters onto a mobile subject line, while Gmail allows 74 characters. A good guideline to follow is 50 characters or less.

Create Urgency

Creating a sense of urgency is a good technique to increase your email open rates. Urgency helps to encourage the email reader to act immediately, instead of putting it off until later. Putting it off means there is a higher chance of the email being forgotten. An important reminder is to tell the truth. Don’t write an email subject line just get their attention. Don’t try to get your email opened by making false promises. This can upset people, and you can end up being marked as spam. See a long list of potential subject lines here.

Make it Personal

Adding your recipient’s name to the subject line of the email adds a nice, personal touch that makes it more eye-catching. It makes your reader feel like you are connecting with them on a personal level. Personalization can build a sense of trust and sincerity. According to Hubspot’s Science of Email 2014 Report, email subject lines that included the first name of the recipient had higher click-through-rates than emails that didn’t.

The email subject line is what will determine whether or not the recipient opens and reads your email. It is important to put in as much thought and effort into the subject line as it is to any other part of an email. If you continue to have trouble with your email CTRs, check out our blog post about other possible culprits that could be causing unopened emails here. Feel free to contact US Data Corporation if you have additional email marketing questions at (888) 578-3282.