NEW YORK: Consumers are most likely to open email marketing material on a Tuesday but are more likely to click through on a Friday, a survey has found. 

Insights provider eMarketer reported the findings of a study by email marketing software company GetResponse which analysed over 300m messages to determine the top times for open and click through rates.

Overall, the average open rate worldwide was 18.58% and the average click through rate (CTR) 4.51%.

Breaking the figures down into a daily pattern, however, revealed that Open Rates rose to 19.9% on a Tuesday while Friday's CTR hit 4.9%.

The study also indicated that 17.9% of a week's worldwide marketing emails were sent on Tuesday, a practice eMarketer said appeared to be validated by the high level of openings registered on Tuesdays.

But it suggested a more effective strategy might see marketers putting a greater focus on Friday. This was the day that marketers sent the fewest number of emails, just 14.9% of the total, but consumers were opening them at the second highest rate of the week, at 19.6% and clicking through more often than they did on Tuesdays (at 4.9% against 4.6%).

On a quarterly basis, most marketing emails were opened in the first quarter of the year, but the highest click rate was in the fourth quarter, which eMarketer speculated was a reflection of the number of worldwide holidays towards the year end, with consumers looking for relevant ideas and gifts.

Other findings from the GetResponse study included most email opens occurring in the first hour after delivery. After 24 hours an email's chance of being opened drops below 1%, it stated.

In addition, automated emails had a 24% higher Open Rate and 47% higher CTR, while welcome messages and confirmation emails were particularly effective, with a 67% Open Rate and 33% CTR.

Data sourced from eMarketer, GetResponse; additional content by Warc staff