Ross Kramer

Heather Fletcher is senior content editor with Target Marketing.

More e-retailers are sending emails to consumers who’ve added products to their online shopping carts but then left without buying. Nineteen percent of retailers listed in Internet Retailer’s "Top 500 Guide" and "Second 500 Guide," which collectively rank the top 1,000 e-retailers in North America by sales, send at least one cart abandonment email. That’s up from 14.6 percent that did so in 2011, according to email marketing vendor Listrak. Listrak’s annual analysis of the cart abandonment email practices of the Top 1,000 retailers show that smaller retailers, in particular, stepped up their use of email to encourage consumers to

I've been in the email marketing industry a long time—more than 10 years—which means I've pretty much seen it all. But what surprises me the most are the mistakes that keep happening over and over again. Many of these should have been eradicated long ago. We talk a lot about best practices, but here is a list of the 10 worst practices that are killing email campaign ROI.

How often do you evaluate the health of your email lists? Last year, MarketingSherpa reported that 33 percent of businesses are seeing a decline in their list sizes, with business lists experiencing an average decrease of 13 percent. Other industry stats put the average attrition rate above 30 percent annually. List attrition is caused by a number of factors: people change jobs and subsequently their business email addresses, or they change their personal email to switch ISPs or avoid spam and start fresh. This churn can wreak havoc not only on your deliverability but on your ROI.

Web designers may think of cascading style sheets (CSS) as a good way to ensure Web pages look great in any browser, but CSS can seem like cancer to inboxes.

It may seem unfair that email design affects deliverability, considering marketers have to design for everything from smartphones to desktops. But it's true, and Ross Kramer, co-founder and CEO of Lititz, Pa.-based email marketing firm Listrak, has suggestions to ensure all messages look the way they should.

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