What’s the best time to send email? We analyzed billions of email opens to find out.

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Sending your email at the wrong time can derail the most well-crafted campaign. Knowing when your audience is most likely to open your emails is crucial. If you’re sending your emails at a time when your audience isn’t actively checking their email, that means your messages get pushed further down the inbox as more emails come in—and are less likely to be seen by your subscribers. 23% of all email opens occur within the first hour after delivery, GetResponse found; within the second hour, opens drop by half.

So it’s no surprise that many email marketers put significant effort into optimizing their send times to make sure messages reach subscribers when they’re actively checking their inboxes.

But what’s the best time to send email? It depends! We analyzed billions of email opens by time of day and found that the results are heavily impacted by geolocation and device usage.

The State of Email Engagement

Benchmark your email performance against your peers and learn how to turn engagement insights into strategies and tactics that improve your email program with our State of Email Engagement report.

Download the free report →

 

UNITED STATES

In the United States, the most popular reading time for email is the morning. About 7% of all opens happen between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m., and 21% of all opens happen between 9 a.m. and noon. Mobile opens are fairly steady between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m., while webmail and desktop spike in the morning and start to drop in the afternoon.

UNITED KINGDOM

Of all the countries we analyzed, the UK was the only location where the most popular time to read email is in the afternoon (between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m.) rather than in the morning. These numbers are heavily driven by an increase in mobile opens in the late afternoon and early evening. Mobile opens in the UK peak at 6 p.m.

CANADA

In Canada, the most popular time to read email is between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m., with more than 8% of all emails being opened during that time. Email opens fall off quickly after noon across all reading environments.

GERMANY

Most emails in Germany are read between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. local time, but read rates are fairly steady throughout the day. Until about 8 p.m., read rates range between 5.5% and 6%—mostly driven by the high open rates on mobile and webmail clients.

SPAIN

In Spain, most emails are read between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. There is a dip in overall email opens between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. After that, opens rise again for another peak between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. local time. Desktop opens are almost on par with mobile opens in the morning hours, but fall quickly after noon.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

While most emails in Australia and New Zealand are opened between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m.—that’s on par with most other geolocations—the earlier morning hours are more active than other regions. Mobile opens are starting to pick up as early as 5 a.m. local time—a time that’s still quiet in most other geolocations.

How to put these insights into action

Our research shows that there isn’t one perfect time to send email. When your subscribers are most likely to engage with your message heavily depends on additional factors like geolocation, the device they use to open your emails, and more. The insights above can help you get a first idea on what might work for your audience, but it’s even more important that you…

1. Understand when your audience opens email.

Utilize open data—either from your ESP or a tool like Litmus Email Analytics—to identify the most popular open times for your audience. Then, use these insights to test and optimize your send time to see if a shift in send timing leads to a lift in email performance. Make sure you don’t just look at open rates though. You’ll also want to keep an eye on whether or not different send times might impact click rates and overall conversions.

What’s the best send time for your campaigns?

See what’s the most popular time for your audience to open your email with individual-level tracking in Litmus Email Analytics.

Learn more →

 

2. Understand where your subscribers are based—and if it’s worth optimizing send times for different time zones and geolocations.

If your subscribers span across a range of time zones, and important markets aren’t close to each other, segmenting your list by time zone can be a highly effective approach. If you don’t have geolocation information, Litmus Email Analytics can help you understand where your subscribers are based when opening your emails.

The State of Email Engagement

Benchmark your email performance against your peers and learn how to turn engagement insights into strategies and tactics that improve your email program with our State of Email Engagement report.

Download the free report →