Email response

Key Factors for Gauging Email Response

Laura Noll Blog, Data and Analytics Leave a Comment

How does a company gauge the success of their email campaigns? Are there key factors that can help increase the conversion rate of these campaigns? Of course, and those factors can vary depending on the goal of your email and the audience you are approaching. Here are a few key factors and basic tips to help gauge the effectiveness of your email campaigns.

The first piece to analyze is the open rate. This is the number of people on a given email list that open or view a delivered email. The average open rate for a commercial email campaign in the US is 18-25%.  An easy way to increase the open rate of your email campaign is to formulate a subject line that is short yet intriguing. Give the reader a glimpse of your message, but only enough that they need to open the email to get the full message.

It is also important to note that when you send your emails is almost as important as the message itself. Market and audience research is important when deciding when to send an email – know your audience. Know when they are looking at emails, and when they are more likely to open an email. If you are targeting office workers, schedule your email to be sent in the mid-morning or early afternoon. If you are looking at hospitality or outdoor workers, you may want to look at early morning or later in the evening, based on the times when they may be available to view an email.  A quick tip to help determine the best times to send your emails is A/B testing. On your next few email campaigns, send the same email at different times throughout the day to see which does the best. These numbers will help you segment your target audience for increased engagement.

The next key factor in gauging the effectiveness of your email marketing efforts is the click-through rate (CTR).  This is the number or percentage of individuals that click on a specific link when viewing an email.  It is good to note that the click-through rate does not include the number of people that failed to click on your link in the email, but they visited the site later anyway as a result of your initial email. The click-through rate is not based upon an IP address, it is only based on a link in the campaign email itself.

Average click-through rate is usually between 2-4% for small and medium companies, but varies greatly based on industry. For example, the hotel industry sees an average of 7.5% (CTR), as compared to the Fitness and Nutritional Industry seeing over 12%.  To improve your company’s CTR, make sure to declutter your emails and add a clear call to action link.

And finally, your conversion rate.  This is measured by the number of visitors that perform the desired action, whether you want them to make a purchase, register for an event or visit your website. The success of your campaign’s conversion rate is based on your call to action link. At the end of 2014, the US retail conversion rate was between 1-4% depending on the device.

Conversions are the piece of your email campaign that can directly affect your bottom line, so it is an important one to watch. Many successful companies take their highest performing campaigns and replicate them, trying to maintain high conversion rates. One tip to increase your conversion rate goes back to the clear call to action link that limits the clicks necessary to complete the transaction. It is basic Sales 101 – break down the barriers to completing a transaction/conversion.

Keeping customers on your email list is important, so again, make sure that you are sending valuable content with a relevant message and providing a solid call to action link. Send your message in a timely manner to email subscribers who want to hear from you.  And avoid sending too many emails. Your consumers will appreciate the value you bring and frequent your brand based on loyalty and trust.

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About the Author
Laura Noll

Laura Noll


Laura is a seasoned marketer with passion for user experience, design, development and snowboarding. Using her knowledge of ad technology and the digital space, she starts conversations — like this one. Join in: @AdStationbyAdk.

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