How to Optimize Your Email Newsletter for Mobile

How to Optimize Your Email Newsletter for Mobile (Source: - used as royalty free image)

Mobile isn’t actually the next fantastical frontier for digital marketing anymore; It’s the everyday reality. Optimizing your brand’s marketing efforts for mobile is key, whether your campaign’s focus is on social, SEO, or even email marketing.

But wait, you may be asking yourself, do that many people really check their inbox on a mobile device? Millions do, and with the rise of new technologies, mobile open rates are still growing constantly. In fact, the percentage of emails opened on mobile devices jumped up more than 500% between 2011 and 2014, from a mere 8% to 53%, according to Forbes. 

Need another staggering statistic to convince you that mobile optimization is a colossal deal? In a study by BlueHornet, more than 80% of email marketing subscribers report that they will delete an email if it doesn’t look good on their mobile device.

Email marketing is still one of the most effective marketing techniques at your disposal, and now is the time to expand your audience by reaching their tablets and smartphones.

Here are five easy ways to optimize your email newsletter for mobile:

1.) Use Larger Fonts

No one wants to read through tiny text on a desktop, and that goes double for mobile. Make sure your font is clear and easy to read without forcing your users to zoom in (since the reality is that most won’t, and will instead just abandon your email without reading your great copy). For more readable fonts, Hubspot recommends using 14 px or higher for your body copy, and 22 px or higher for headlines.

2.) Choose Your Content Carefully

Streamlining your content is extremely important for mobile-friendliness. Only include your very best content, and be willing to jettison the rest (including less useful or important links, copy, and images). Condensing your newsletter down to its most concise form will allow for easier scrolling on mobile, and the smaller file size means your newsletter will load faster.

3.) Streamline Your Column Layout

Using as few columns as possible will help ensure a more mobile-friendly layout. Single columns look cleaner and more legible on smaller screens, and the detailed navigation bars that often make up a column can easily break or prove too small to use on mobile. If you have a two column (or more!) layout on the desktop, make it stack column on column in your mobile layout. 

4.) Make Your Buttons Large and Touch-Friendly

In addition to ditching or streamlining your clunky navigation bar, it’s important to make your other clickable elements – particularly your Call to Action – large, simple to find, and, well, clickable. Make sure your buttons are responsive and large enough to touch easily – we recommend a minimum of 44 px by 44 px.

5.) Shorten Your Subject Lines

According to this study by Experian, shorter subject lines led to more unique open rates, with the highest rates coming from subject lines using fewer than 25 characters. This is a good lesson for writers in general. In email marketing and mobile design, brevity really is the soul of clicks (except for when you need to work in a sweet Shakespeare reference like that one).

Have any more questions about the future of digital marketing? Ready to launch a content marketing campaign that is mobile optimized across the spectrum? That’s where we come in! Drop Geek a line for all of your social media, email marketing, and web design needs today!

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Jason Finn

Founder & Chief Geek

Jason has nearly 20 years of consulting experience, predominantly in the technology space. Most recently he was the COO and Director of Technology for Rich Casto & Company, a national training and consulting organization in the real estate industry.
As a consultant for IBM, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and Envision Consulting Group (now IMS Health), Jason has served clients of all sizes, including Big Pharma, Fortune 500, and Global 1000 companies:

  • Allstate Insurance Company
  • AOL (America Online)
  • Astellas Pharmaceuticals
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Ford Motor Credit
  • Wockhardt USA (formerly Morton Grove Pharmaceuticals)
  • Norwich Union
  • PNC Bank
  • Reynolds and Reynolds

Sarunas Budrikas

Creative Director

Sarunas is a web design and development expert with hundreds of successful projects in his portfolio. He is passionate about delivering extraordinary user experiences for every client and consistently goes above and beyond everyone’s expectations. As an SEO expert and strategist, he can optimize your website, or app, to get the most out of it, day in and day out. Sarunas holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Kaunas Technology University, in Lithuania. Sarunas now lives in Chicago, and calls it home.

Alexandra Olsavsky

Client Experience Specialist

Alex specializes in content generation and social media promotion for Geek | Chicago clients, helping to solidify their presence in the online community. This includes blog writing, graphic design, co-ordination and design of weekly newsletters, and active engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Outside of Geek, Alex is a classically-trained soprano who professionally performs around the city of Chicago (most recently with the Chicago Baroque Band, and with the Rolling Stones for their "50 and Counting" tour).