The new Gmail tabs and how to minimise the impact on your email open rates

 Marketing  Comments Off on The new Gmail tabs and how to minimise the impact on your email open rates
Aug 132013

Gmail from GoogleGoogle has introduced tabs into the Gmail inbox to help organise email messages.

This is potentially helpful for email users but something of a hindrance for email marketers. That’s any business or organisation that sends out information or offers by email.

With the new system your promotional emails are likely to end up in the PROMOTIONS inbox along with all the junk emails and offers from retailers who use SOFT OPT IN to send special offers out to customers who’ve only bought once.

They won’t appear in the PRIMARY inbox unless users take action to change the default settings. This means your emails are less likely to get read by those who log into Google to read their mail.

Log into Gmail and go see how the tabs work.

What can you do as an email marketer?

The good news is, there is a way round this filtering. Users can simply delete the tabs they don’t want and then all those emails go back into the PRIMARY inbox.

Or users can drag important emails into the PRIMARY inbox tab from the PROMOTIONS tab. Then users can tick the option for all emails from that sender to go in your PRIMARY inbox.

How can we get users to drag our emails into the PRIMARY inbox?

There’s no way round this, it is a blow for email marketing but we can take some steps to try and get our emails back in front of people.

  1. Add information on your sign up page especially for Gmail users. See how I’ve done it here. You’re welcome to copy and paste, if it helps.
  2. Blog about this if you run a marketing type of business.
  3. If you see your customers at farmers’ markets or in your shop, then print out a helpful tip sheet about the changes and ask people to make sure they’re still getting your offers or information.
  4. Work even harder to make your subject lines compelling, so if people do glance down the promotional email inbox, your email will stand out.
  5. Add instructions at the end of your sales emails to encourage people to move your emails into their PRIMARY inbox.

If your subscribers get emails via Mail for Mac or Outlook for Windows then they won’t see the tabs, so this change won’t affect their inboxes.

Have you noticed any impact on open rates yet or have any other tips to help with this change?