The unsubscribe process is another one of those elements of email marketing that just makes me SOUR! Too many marketers do not take into consideration my desire to leave them and the difficulty of doing so can sometimes be infuriating.
First, the law actually prescribes how unsubscribes should work. Here's the exact wording:
"You can’t charge a fee, require the recipient to give you any personally identifying information beyond an email address, or make the recipient take any step other than sending a reply email or visiting a single page on an Internet website as a condition for honoring an opt-out request."
While this allows for some latitude, it is clear that the actions I need to take should be limited and brief.
Some do this extremely well and even brand it via the "SafeUnsubscribe" that Constant Contact users experience.
Today's Sample: 10 emails
Overall Grade: C
Top Performer: Anything in Stained Glass (Constant Contact) and CMO.com (Adobe) - Grade A
My rating is based on the unsubscribe process itself and the ease of unsubscribing. If you are doing a great job of email marketing, making your messages relevant, timely and of interest, very few of your subscribers will want to go here. If they do, then you should happily and easily let them go and look at your practices to see how you can improve.
Today's Tips to Improve Your Inbox Anatomy and not be a SOUR eMailer:
- Make your unsubscribe as simple and easy as possible with only one click required.
- Allow people to manage email preferences for type of content and frequency of emails, but keep that as a separate option in a preference center. AND make sure if you ask for this that you use it to make their emails more personalized.
- Don't bury the unsubscribe with other options and in long sentences. However, do place "preferences" in close proximity so they can see that they can change if they don't want to be completely gone.
- Make the word "unsubscribe" be the link, not "click here" and certainly not a URL.
- Use a preference center to allow people to select what they want and when; make this part of the subscription process (future post topic).
- Make sure you abide by the law and honor the unsubscribe request within 10 days. There are financial implications of not doing so - you can be fined up to $16,000 for every infraction.
- Don't ask for reasons why they unsubscribe - use your data to figure that out.
- On the unsubscribe landing page, thank them, let them know how they can opt back in (with a link directly there) if they want and how long it will take for the changes to take effect.
Use these unsubscribe process tips to make sure you meet CAN-SPAM requirements and to manage a process that is required but undesirable. Don't be a SOUR emailer and you will minimize these clicks.