By Jared Atchison, the co-founder of WPForms,

When it comes to email marketing, segmenting your email lists can drastically improve your open and click-through rates. In fact, according to MailChimp's latest segmented-list user data, open rates were a solid 14.31 percent higher and clicks were a whopping 100.95 percent higher than non-segmented campaigns.

Personally, one of my favorite ways to segment an email list is to create a lead magnet for almost every blog post. For example, if you're writing about marketing tips, you can include a free checklist that the reader can download in exchange for an email address. You now know that this reader really cares about marketing tips. 

Needless to say, email list segmentation is definitely the way to go if you want to boost user engagement with your email campaigns. After all, people want to receive emails that interest them, are of value to them and, most of all, are personalized to meet their needs. 

The following are four email list segmentation strategies that can be used to increase open rates, both during the signup process and within your email campaigns.

1. Demographics

Segmenting your email lists based on demographics is a great way to make sure the right audience gets the right content at the right time. And with the right website form, this type of information is easily collected during the signup process. For example, gather information such as age, gender and location to gain insights into a person's needs and interests.

Just make sure that the demographics you ask for are essential to your business and make sense when it comes to your future email campaigns. This is because asking for too much personal information on a signup form can increase form abandonment if site visitors feel you are asking too much from them.

2. User Engagement

Email engagement is another easy way to segment your email lists to make sure you're targeting the right people with useful email campaigns.

Start by tracking your email open and click-through rates to see who is actively engaging with your current campaigns. From there, segment the lists based on that data. Or, send out an email campaign announcing a new product release, flag anyone that opens that email as a potential customer and use that segmented list to target customers and encourage them to purchase from you.

You can offer special deals, free shipping or exclusive access to products and services after finding out who is likely to be a customer of yours to push them further down the sales funnel and generate more revenue.

3. Buying Behavior

Segmenting your email lists based on buying behavior is a great way to increase open rates and push more sales. In fact, you can break down your lists into two very specific segments:

  • Consistent Buyers: Find out which subscribers buy from you on a regular basis and send out email campaigns to encourage upsells or plan upgrades, share new product releases or features or offer exclusive frequent-buyer deals.
  • One-Time Buyers: For those who have purchased from you once and only once, you'll need to send out email campaigns that encourage them to come back and buy again. For instance, offer personalized discounts, send out reminders to renew a plan or purchase again or even share your company's newest blog content to remind them why you're so great.

4. Abandoned-Cart Segments

Shopping cart abandonment is something all e-commerce sites have to deal with. Luckily, if you use the right segmenting strategies, you can target those who have abandoned your site's shopping cart to re-engage them and convince them to come back and finish their purchase.

Targeting those who were close to buying from you is a great way to get people to complete their purchases. You might even consider offering an incentive, such as free shipping or a coupon code, to really push for the open and email click-through.

There you have it! Four solid email list segmentation strategies you can use both during the signup process and within your email campaigns to increase email open rates and build your business. So, the next time you analyze your site's data and notice your email open rates are lacking, try using one of these tips for changing that so you can generate more click-throughs and hopefully more sales!

Jared Atchison is the co-founder of WPForms, a drag & drop form builder for WordPress that's being used on over 400,000 websites.

Published on: Jun 29, 2018