Skip to content
Home

Attention is currency in the digital marketing world. And with more consumers blocking ads, skipping ads, and developing ad blindness, attention for your messages is becoming scarcer just about everywhere…but not in the email inbox.

The average time spent reading an email increased by nearly 7% to 11.1 seconds between 2011 and 2016, according to a very conservative analysis of billions of emails using Litmus Email Analytics.

Across all six years, there was a fairly steady improvement in the amount of time subscribers spent reading each email they opened. Subscribers have gradually spent less time glancing and deleting emails and gradually more time skim reading and fully reading emails.

And while SMS, push messaging, Twitter, Snapchat, and other channels have progressively shortened message length and our attention spans—which are now shorter than a goldfish’s—consumers are very willing to spend quite a bit of time reading an email. We found that the percentage of emails read for more than 18 seconds grew to 44.4% in 2016 from 38.4% in 2011.

To learn more about subscribers’ growing email attention spans and how to optimize your emails for quick consumption, check out the infographic below.