Use email metrics as a great diagnostic tool. These metrics provide a ‘look under the hood,’ so to speak. Just like a car, if something isn’t running right, you fix it. If you see a metric that’s off, or not where you want it to be, it’s time to break out the toolbox and make some repairs.

To help you reach your goals, we’ve created a list of eight ways you can improve your email metrics.

Improve your open rates

1. Write a must-open subject line.

Your subject line should tell the recipient what the email is about in a clear and concise way. Your subject line should average around 50 characters or less, and use urgent language that convinces a recipient to open the email right away. Words like “today,” “one day only” and “act now” are great examples.

2. Make sure the ‘From label’ is legit

If you send emails that are from, they won’t get opened. Your emails should be from your business and contain the company name in the address. If a recipient sees an odd name in the ‘from label,’ they’ll likely ignore it.

Improve your click-through rates

3. Watch your layout

Email design is important. If your text and pictures are scattered all over the place, recipients will likely close the email. For help, turn to our guide that covers the dos and don’ts of email design.

4. Keep the message short

Quickly explain the purpose of the email. No one wants to read paragraph after paragraph of information. Your recipients don’t want long emails; so don’t waste your time creating a novel.

5. Create a call to action button

Try creating a call to action button in your email rather than a hyperlink. A button stands out and clearly shows the reader what the purpose of the email is. Use this button builder from VerticalResponse to create a button for your next email.

Improve your conversions

6. Make the checkout process seamless

If customers click on an emailed link to make a purchase, you’re halfway there. If a customer doesn’t follow through with the sale, your checkout process could be to blame.

How long does it take to check out? Is it easy to navigate? Customers want a fast process. If you want to improve your checkout process without bringing a website developer on board, try Shopify. This DIY tool will help you set up an e-commerce site that customers will love. (Plus, when a customer checks out through Shopify, his or her email address is automatically added to your contact list in VerticalResponse.)

7. Improve your forms

If your call to action is based on getting new leads, or having customers sign up for a service or consultation, make sure the process to sign up is simple. Long forms and tedious websites are deal breakers. Try Lander – it’s a tool that creates lead-generating pages that are hassle-free for the customer.

Improve metric management

8. Use a tool to centralize data

Tired of tracking email, social and sales metrics in a dozen different platforms? Turn to Dasheroo. With this tool, you can see all of your metrics in one dashboard. It works with VerticalResponse, social sites and many sales tracking apps. Best of all, it’s free. Check out this video that explains how Dasheroo works.

Metrics are the key to optimizing your email marketing. Remember to make changes slowly so you know which change contributed to your success.

You can review the glossary of email metrics in part one and email benchmarks in part two.

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