Reducing the carbon footprint of your email marketing campaigns

Even though it’s still one of the cleaner marketing channels, emailing out to your customer databases still has a carbon footprint. Let’s understand how much energy the emailing industry uses, and how we can reduce it.

Emails have a large carbon footprint

Did you know cloud computing now accounts for over 3% of global emissions, and can be as high as 6% per nation?

So what about emails?

Sending one email with a 1MB attachment will emit 3.3g CO2e. So the average B2C company may emit over 50 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year with weekly email sends to 150k customers. These small things do add up. So let's talk about what you can do to reduce your company's carbon footprint from emails.

How can digital marketers go green?

Going green is the act of accounting for and finding ways to reduce the environmental impact of your actions. This can include switching to green suppliers or reducing the amount of file storage and emails you send. One awesome initiative is the idea to set an expiry date to your emails, from Zero Carbon Emails. While that's a while away, here are three things you can do today to reduce the carbon footprint of your email marketing department.

1. Target your emails more specifically

By not sending all emails to all users, you could save tonnes of carbon emissions!

2. Move to simpler email signatures

Did you know every image sent adds an additional 30 - 100 grams of carbon emitted? This doesn't even include the energy from the user's device while they're reading it, perpetual storage, or sending it to more than one device. If you can, we recommend choosing a small image, ideally just a few KB in size. If you can, for internal communications, create a logoless, minimalist signature. For bonus points: delete your email threads & history when you reply to an email.

3. Keep your lists clean

Unwanted emails don’t just bother people, they also waste energy. Use EcoEmails to remove spam and unnecessary weight from your email databases!

Emily Mabin Sutton

Emily Mabin Sutton