Countdown Timer Best Practices

However you chose to use a timer, use our best practices to make sure your timer stands out from the crowds and has maximum impact.

Swapping an expired timer to an after image

Swap out the countdown to another banner when the timer has expired. Keep messaging relevant by displaying images that are relevant at the time of open. See Swapping Out within the Campaign creation for more information.

Fully customize timer design

Design your own background image and create your own template. Timer templates are quick and easy to create in the Kickdynamic platform.

Use your own custom font. Timers aren’t restricted to web safe fonts so any font can be used. Previously loaded custom fonts can be found in the Account section where you can also load additional fonts. See our Uploading Fonts help section for next steps.

Add Labels - hours / mins / seconds make all the difference!

Add the time labels to your timer background image – build the days, hours, minutes, seconds labels into the background design. This makes it clear to the receiver how long left they have to buy from the sale etc.

Remember to include messaging around the timer. Messaging is key to being clear what the timer is counting down to and then promoting action. Use language to encourage action!

Creating urgency with countdown timers

To increase urgency include seconds in the design. It may sound obvious but showing seconds where the recipient can literally see the seconds ticking helps to drive action.

Talking of action, don't forget to include a call to action. The timer is there to encourage engagement and conversion so position a super clear call to action close by.

Countdown timer size

Countdown timers are animated gifs so they have upwards of 30 frames (for 3 seconds) this means they are heavier (or slower to load) than a static image. So be smart. Slice the timer creative to keep the timer part of the image as small as possible.

If the timer is part of a large header image, slice the image and Kickdynamic will serve the live countdown timer within it. Then the other image slices can be built into the email as normal so to keep the email load time to a minimum. As a general rule, GIFs only support 256 colours per frame, so having large colourful images can affect the quality.

When to use a countdown timer?

Don't use timers all the time. Using timers around specific events is much stronger than using them in every promotional campaign. Try to use them around key events and promotions to drive results.

Split testing countdown timers

Test, test, test!

Use A/B split tests to measure the impact of the timer within the campaign, having the creative with and without the timer present to measure success. It is recommended to send a 10% control group the creative without the timer to measure performance. Make sure to keep everything else in the email consistent.

You can also test positioning, messaging, design, colour, timeparts and using only days or hours in timers.