Best Days and Times for Email Outreach

It’s getting harder and harder to get through to top talent, so timing your messages to perfection is essential if you expect a strong response rate.

In today’s cluttered world, the time of day recruiters send emails is just as important as which day of the week they should choose. 

Smart phones and watches have revolutionised the rate that people receive information, meaning inboxes are almost always overflowing. Sending your email blast at the appropriate time for the specific audience you are trying to reach is a critical component of making sure your email receives the attention it deserves.

We found research from Gem, LinkedIn, WizardSourcer & Hubspot on the days and times you’re most likely to see email opens, broken down by role, extremely helpful and hope you will too.

 

The Background: 

Candidates are bombarded with recruiting emails and tend to skip over the majority unless they are actively seeking a new role. When your outreach is competing with mass amounts of daily emails you need to grab attention and get noticed, especially by those passive prospects. A compelling subject line will get you great open rates, sure. But a subject line is only as great as it is visible. And this means getting it as close as possible to the top of inboxes.

More than 50% of prospects open emails within the first 1.5 hours of send time – something to keep in mind regarding the importance of catching passive talent at the right time. Another factor that comes into play here is most people take a top-down approach to emails, reading the messages that came in most recently first. So you really need to be hitting that send button as close to when a prospect will be sitting down to check their inbox as possible.

 

General Send Time Best Practice: 

According to the data collected by Gem, LinkedIn, WizardSourcer & Hubspot, some general best practice for outreach suggests that the best day to send an email is Tuesday, as people are generally motivated to start their week and are more engaged when it comes to reading emails. 

When it comes to the clock, the most popular time for emails to be read is between 10am and 11am, with 10am proving to be the optimal time for click-ins. After that, taking the breakdown of people’s days into account, between 8pm and 11pm can work as many have a habit of checking and responding to emails that they didn’t get to during the day before going to bed so that it’s off their plate to start fresh in the morning. 

In line with this thinking, between 1pm and 2pm also ranks up there for opens, as people engage with their emails on their lunch breaks.

Finally, let’s not forget about those early birds who start their day before getting out of bed. Stats show that approximately 50% of people start their day this way, which is why between 6a.m and 7a.m seems to be yet another popular time for email opens.

We would advise testing your key audience by trialing some different best practice times, and the insights of opens and click throughs will let you know which suits them and when they are more likely to engage, rewarding your effort.

 

Role Specific Send Times

Gem takes it one step further with a role specific breakdown.

While this doesn’t apply to all it is worth bearing in mind when next looking to hire these roles. We wanted to share these insights to help you to discover the best window of time to send for your potential candidates. Broken down role by role, here is a key to click-through:

Engineering Managers

  • Emails sent Sunday afternoons perform 9% better than the average
  • Emails sent Thursday afternoons from 3 pm – 5 pm perform 3 – 5% worse than the average

Engineers

  • Emails sent Sunday before 4 pm perform 6 – 11% better than the average
  • Emails sent after 10 pm any day of the week perform 3 – 27% worse than the average
  • Emails sent before 5 am any day of the week perform 3 – 15% worse than the average

Product

  • Emails sent Saturday and Sunday before noon perform 5 – 10% better than the average
  • Emails sent at 4 pm on Thursday and Friday perform 7 – 9% worse than the average‍

Design

  • Emails sent Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 am perform 8 – 9% better than the average
  • Emails sent on Sundays perform 11% worse than the average

Data

  • Emails sent at 9 am Monday – Friday perform 5 – 8% better than the average
  • Emails sent Wednesday evenings and Thursday afternoons/evenings perform 5 – 6% better than the average

Sales

  • Emails sent Saturday and Sunday from noon – 5 pm perform 9 – 14% better than the average
  • Emails sent Tuesday-Friday at 5 pm perform 8 – 13% worse than the average

 

As you’ll have noticed, there is a high presence of weekend days and times throughout, so we would recommend looking into some tools for scheduled outreach and trialing them to see which works best for you. Having a scheduled outreach process will allow you to build pipelines when it works for you, while still ensuring your messages hit their inbox at the right time, even if at that time you’re not sitting at your desk.

If you are putting the time into crafting a personalised email and selecting a target audience to send it to, you may as well spend the time considering when it is best to hit send, or else all of that other time and effort was wasted. 

Put it this way when weighing up the importance of message timing – It could be the most compelling email you’ve ever written, but if it gets skipped over because it was sent to an Engineering Manager at 5pm on a Thursday, you needn’t have bothered.

 

Thoughts? Questions? Ideas? Whatever this blog post has brought up for you, we’d love to hear about it and learn what we can do to help – Reach out at guru@ta.guru