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Emails: 20 items to check before hitting “Send”

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Email Checklist

Emails: 20 items to check before hitting “Send”

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You know that brief moment of stress when it’s time to hit “Send”… if you’ve ever had to send emails to a list of contacts, you know what I’m talking about. Whether your contacts are a few or thousands, it’s your reputation which is at stake and that’s why it’s important to be careful. Now that email boxes are filling up at a crazy rate, it’s better to stand out for the right reasons rather than for mistakes which will cast a shadow of uncertainty over your products, services and professionalism.

To gain confidence and dispel anxiety when communicating with your contacts by email, keep a checklist. Based on our years of experience in this area, we’ve compiled a list of key points to verify before each sending. Check them out:

1. Name and address of sender

Make sure that the sender name and address that you’re using are recognizable and consistent so that people can quickly know from whom the email is coming.

2. “Reply-to” address

The “no-reply” addresses should be avoided. These will leave the reader feeling that you don’t want him to communicate with you and that you don’t care about his needs. Use a functional email address to keep the conversation going.

3. Subject line

You only have a few seconds to convince your contact that your email is worth reading. Take the time to create a relevant and catchy subject line to boost your opening rate.

4. Pre-header

The pre-header text is displayed after the subject line in some email boxes and mobile devices. By default, it’s usually the first text in your email that’s seen by the recipient. You might want to write up something meaningful to add to your subject line’s impact.

5. Logo

Your branding/identity must be easily seen in your email, so don’t forget your logo. Make it clickable to give the reader quick access to your website.

6. Link to web version

Despite your tests before sending an email, some issues might still escape your attention. Provide a link to a web version of your email so that the reader can have access to an intact version of it with the images displayed correctly at all times.

7. Placeholder text

Sometimes the text of your email might not be ready when the time comes to integrate the visuals. In such a case, it’s common to use a temporary placeholder text, usually Lorem Ipsum, to check the rendering of the email. Make sure the temporary text has been replaced by the real content before sending the email.

8. Call-to-action

Be sure to include a button or a link that’s clearly visible to prompt the reader to click and take advantage of your offer. Use contrasting colours and action words. Focus on one main call-to-action to avoid distractions.

9. Links

The call-to-action is one of several links (e.g., clickable logo) that may be present in your email. Test them all without exception.

10. Spelling

Pay attention to spelling. An email cannot be changed once sent. Take the time to proofread.

11. Alternative text

Add alternative text to your images. In case the images are not downloaded, the alternative text will be displayed instead.

12. Recipient’s email

Some people wonder why they receive your emails. Showing the electronic address to which the email has been sent can help them understand (Example: If they have several different addresses or shared ones). You can also include an explanatory sentence like “You are receiving this email because you are a user of our platform”.

13. Profile update

Give your contacts the possibility of changing their contact details, interests or email address. This will help avoid people from unsubscribing for the wrong reasons.

14. Authorized sender

To make sure your emails always make it to the inbox, add a note to encourage your recipients to add your sender address to their authorized senders’ list.

15. Unsubscribe link

Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation requires that emails provide an easy and quick option for recipients to opt out of future mailings. Check that your unsubscribe link is visible and working.

16. Physical address

According to the Legislation, the company’s valid physical address, telephone number and email or web address must be included in the email to facilitate contact.

17. Tracking codes

Whether it’s Google Analytics code or any other tracking code, make sure it’s in place to collect all your stats.

18. Display

It’s a fact that cannot be ignored. We’ve heard it many times. More than 50% of emails are now read on a mobile device. Make sure the email is responsive and that it displays correctly on smartphones. Also, check the display in the main email clients using tools such as the one offered by Litmus.

19. Personalization

Businesses that personalize their promotional emails get a 27% higher unique click rate and an 11% higher opening rate than those who don’t[i]. If you’re already in the personalization game, test your conditions well.

20. Testing and retesting!

Testing is probably the most important step in email sending. And what is even more important is to ensure that nothing has been changed since the last tests (this is the biggest cause for errors!).

Once all these checks are done, you can rest easy and click on “Send”!



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