Tips for Writing Email Subject Lines that will Double Open Rates

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Updated on: January 6th, 2023Sharon Sexton6 min read
Writing Email Subject Lines

Email marketing has been a powerful mainstay for many businesses.  As a top digital agency, it has been a core part of our digital marketing services because of how effective it can be. Of course, that effectiveness is directly related to open rates. The more emails which are read increases the number of potential conversions. Today we wanted to share our tips for writing email subject lines that will double open rates.

Using data-driven analysis, you can easily improve your email subject lines which will result in more people actually reading your well-crafted copy and taking advantage of your business propositions.

Tips for Writing Email Subject Lines

  • Include the right words in the subject line – The obvious answer! But what are the right words? Certain words convey the proper message to potential customers. Try using at least two words from our list below in your subject lines to add value to the message.
  • Avoid the wrong words in the subject line – Just like words in the above tip should be included, there are numerous words that should be avoided because they might trigger spam filters or just a human filter that this is not worth the time to open, Make sure to avoid using the words in our list below whenever possible.
  • Follow a 25-character limit – Keeping things short and concise is generally good advice. This is doubly so for email subject lines. According to recent studies, 50% of all emails are opened on mobile devices such as a smartphone. In portrait mode, which is the widest option for a smartphone, you can only see 33 to 38 characters for most phones. iPhones are usually a bit more forgiving than their Galaxy counterparts, however only by a few characters. When you keep is under 35-characters then most phones can read the entire subject line in portrait mode. When you are in the 17 to 24-character range, most of the subject line will be seen in standard mode as well.
  • Use as few words as possible – Studies show that the fewer words used, the more opens you will get. This is certainly related to the character limit discussed above. In the case of words, 6-10 is good while 3-5 is the best option.
  • Use an emoji – Emojis are a language and a powerful one at that. It isn’t uncommon to hear people speak in emoji during a conversation. “That dress is fire.” It makes sense to utilize this form of communication to add depth and showcase flair.
  • Incorporate title caseTitle Case is when most words have the first letter capitalized. An example would be the title of this blog, “Tips for Writing Email Subject Lines that will Double Open Rates”. Using title case allows for the important words are easily identifiable. This clarity is doubly important when considering the screen size of mobile devices.


The Right and Wrong Words

Rather than just reading a few words from the list, take the time to digest the entire list. When you compare the right words to words that decrease open rates it becomes clearer why certain words would elicit one response versus the other.


Words that increase open rates

About   add   advice   available   better   breaking   can   celebrate   content   course   daily   deduction

Deserve   do   easiest   event   exclusive   exhibition   expired   expiring   fastest   find

Freebie   go   golden   holiday   hurry   important   information   introducing   iPhone   jokes   just   latest

Limited time   may   monthly   new   news   notice   painting   plus   prettiest   promotional   re   really

Recipe   register   remember   renew   revision   several   ships   sleeps   snapshot   soon   special   steps

Still time   stock   summer   tell   thanks   this   today only   tomorrow   top stories   try   update   upgrade

Voluntary   voucher   waiting   ways   weekend   weekly   what   won’t   wonderful   yesterday   you   your

Words that decrease open rate

100%   #1   access   announcing   alert   apply now   attend   bargain   best price   billing   boss   budget

Cancel   celebrity   certified   clearance   compare rates   deal   dear friend   debt   discount   don’t

Download   eliminate debt   email marketing   exclusive deal   extend   fantastic deal   finances   free

Friday!   Furry   giving away   greetings   hello   increase sales   incredible deal   innovate   intelligence

Internet marketing   join millions   legal   limited   loan   lowest price   maintained   message contains

Midnight   money   newsletter   no cost   no credit   no obligation   not spam   obligation   one time

Opportunity   perfect   performance   priority mail   prize   problem   program   quickest   registration

Request   risk free   satisfaction   score   shocking   shopper   special promotion   stop   success

Supplies   this isn’t spam   thousands   time limited   vacation   volunteer   weight   where

While supplies last   who   wife

The Bottom Line

The bottom line is that when it comes to email marketing and similar digital marketing services it is important to adapt as technology changes. Our tips for writing email subject lines that will double open rates are based on data analysis which shows how consumer use of email has shifted. Things need to be short and to the point because more often than not a user is checking email on a phone where space is limited. That means you are just two taps away from the delete folder. We’ve also become smarter about recognizing a baited hook which is why not using the wrong words is just as important as using the right ones.

Be sure to check back every week for great new Lounge Lizard blog articles.

Published on: June 25th, 2019
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