It’s always a great feeling to watch your email subscriber list grow, but it’s an equally disheartening feeling to watch it shrink. If you find your numbers dwindling with every email you send, it’s probably a good idea to stop and figure out why you’re losing subscribers. There are several reasons why people choose to unsubscribe from email lists. Here are six of the most common ones, along with remedies to help retain the subscribers you’ve got.
- Your emails just aren’t that good.
Read through the last few emails you’ve sent and try to assess them honestly. Are they interesting and useful? Or are they boring? Hyperbolic? Too long? Poorly written and riddled with grammatical errors? If you’re losing subscribers, make sure your emails are worthwhile first, as bad messages are nothing but spam.
Remedy: Focus on quality! Take the time to craft interesting and relevant content that’s well written and includes compelling images.
- Your emails aren’t relevant.
Your subscribers have certain expectations about the types of messages they’ll receive from you. Namely, they should be related to your brand and provide information that’s useful. If your messages are neither relevant nor useful, they won’t get read. Send too many emails like that, and you’ll lose subscribers quickly.
Remedy: Although it’s tempting to send out all sorts of interesting emails, keep your communiqués to related topics.
- You’re cluttering their inbox.
While it’s true that the squeaky wheel often gets the grease, sometimes it’s just easier to throw out the squeaky wheel entirely. Very few people want to read daily emails, or emails sent on a much too frequent basis. After a while, subscribers will just tire of seeing your name in their inbox and go right for the unsubscribe option.
Remedy: Slow down! Cut your send rate down to once a week, or even once every other week. There’s not necessarily a magic number for email frequency, but pay attention to how often you send and how it affects your unsubscribe rate. You should, after a few tries, strike the right number of messages per week or month.
- Your messages aren’t optimized for mobile devices.
More people read email on mobile devices than they do on traditional PCs or laptops. If your subscribers can’t read your email easily on their iOS or Android phone, they’ll probably zoom in, but only enough to tap the unsubscribe link.
Remedy: Optimize! Use responsive email templates, smaller image sizes, and other best practices for mobile so that your emails look good no matter what they’re viewed on.
- Your subscribers didn’t know they were subscribers.
Auto-subscribing people to your email list may boost your numbers, but it’s really not the best way to win friends and followers. (Plus, it’s in violation of several countries’ anti-spam legislation.) If you simply send out emails without giving people a choice, they’ll often choose to unsubscribe.
Remedy: Make sure you send emails on a permission-only basis. Sure, it may not get you as many subscribers as an auto-sub policy, but it also won’t cause your numbers to fluctuate wildly when people drop off your list.
- A subscriber is no longer interested.
People’s interests change, and from time to time, you may have a few subscribers who are no longer interested in what you have to say.
Remedy: Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do other than accept that people move on sometimes. All you can do is wish them well and hope they return.
How are your company’s email subscriber numbers? If your list isn’t growing the way you’d like it to, or if you’re continually losing numbers, see if you’re giving your followers any of these reasons to unsubscribe. A few easy remedies could mean the difference between a small list and a strong one.