Email is one of the best ways to get in touch with your customers.

We've compiled six reasons why email is important to your business and shouldn't be ignored.

1. E-mail is a more reliable, effective way to reach customers than social media
Social media in business is huge; There is no doubting that. It connects you on a personal level with your customers.

The downside of social media is that the audience you reach can be limited. Email on the other hand, isn't. If you have a customer who has given you their email (be it through a sale or otherwise) then you can get their attention through email.

2. Email marketing yields more conversions
Email is a powerful tool and is ranked as the single most effective tactic for awareness, acquisition, conversion, and retention by marketers. Stats say that the average click through rate of an email campaign is around 3%, for social media it's around 0.5%. People notice emails a lot more than they do other channels of communications.

3. Generate traffic to your website
Most email lands in peoples' inboxes encourage readers to click through to your website.

Try to make sure your website is mobile-friendly as 56% of people open their email on their phone when not at work, so you can expect people to visit your website from their mobile off the back of this.

4. Email is (fast becoming) the expected way to communicate
85% of people say they would like to receive promotional emails from companies they do business with through email at least once a month (Less than 10% of people don't want to receive emails at all – they can opt out if they do get an email). While there are other ways to communicate such as postal, print, or text, people expect to be spoken to by businesses through email.

If a customer is expecting you to talk to them – talk to them!

5. It keeps you in touch
Having contacts on a database of customers will allow you to talk to customers from past and present.

While current customers you might know by name and see on a regular basis – there could be hundreds of thousands of customers who have only made one purchase. Keeping in touch with them through email could re-ignite a protentional purchase from these 'lost customers'.

6. Boost sales
When you have an audience of people who are interested in receiving updates from your business, talking to them about your product can and will lead to sales.

You can email them about a range of things from a special offer to a new product. Emails can take an hour to create and cost pennies to send, but the lasting effect could yield a huge return on investment.

For more information on tools like email marketing, there are a lot of free resource sites available. My particular favorite are passport2success.org and Moz.com which both give guides on business marketing.