Anyone else cares to share their numbers?
Good point regarding the sender name. I will play with it once HN wave subsides.
I send the confirmation emails through Google's email servers (Google Apps).
update: If I break it down by domain, I see gmail->80%, yahoo->70%, and hotmail->66%.
Currently I use:
Please open this link to confirm your email:
This link will expire on: 8/19/2011 10:29:11 PM EST.
Thanks for the tip about subject for email confirmation!
In the past I was using "Link to confirm your PostJobFree email", but your new version with clear call to action ("Please confirm your email address") should perform better.
If you write the date as "August 8, 2011" it should be trivial to parse for everyone. (Except for people using different calendars)
Why not just say "The link is valid until August 19", and then let it expire some time after all the world has moved on to the 20th? (No MM/DD or DD/MM. Please.)
I personally prefer the old fashioned "Just reply to this mail" method, which many mailing lists use for confirmation, to opening a browser window - in the worst case I have to wait for my browser to launch, too - and I'm going to close that window immediately anyway so I can get back to what I was actually doing, so I just think "I'll get to that later", but then I don't, and when I remember [did I click that link? I'm pretty sure I did, so there's probably a bug in their list somewhere and I shall ignore them henceforth], the link has probably expired anyway [can't be bothered checking what time and day it is in "EST" (Estonia?)] so I'll just browse around for funny kittens instead. And all of that just because somebody wanted me to click on a link. They're sooo cute!
Maybe it's just that the email way is too rarely used, but it makes me pause. I prefer a link, that's much more of a no-brainer.
But the suggestions overall are valid - thanks!
1) "The link will expire 2011 August 19"
2) "The link is valid until 2011 August 19"
3) "The link is valid for one day until 2011 August 19"?
This gives people a sense of urgency, but doesn't discourage them from trying the link if they're a little late. "Through" is (to my ears) an Americanism.
(I'm a native English speaker, not from the US where "through" seems more common)
Personally, I would say "August 19th", not "19".
If the duration is less than three months, the year can be inferred from the date of the email.
Next Step: Confirm your email address
Thinking along the lines of how "Follow me on Twitter" tests better than "If you liked this blog entry, please follow me on Twitter." Just give people a direct order. "Next step" might make it clearer that they're not yet finished with the process?
I think rewarding the user for singing up would be an interesting incentive. "Click the link to receive your first email".
Having said that, unlike registration confirmations, where I would like to get back out of my inbox to your site. For mailing lists, I don't need to go back to your site, really. I'd much rather stay in my inbox if that's ok. I'd quite like to see an A/B test between the usual method and a request for people reply to the email, rather than click a link. "Reply to this email to start receiving updates": simple order, direct resulting action. It also makes it sound like a similar action will be required to stop receiving updates.
Wonder how many people are using web-based mail clients and whether that would impact a preference to reply or click?