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How to Measure the Effectiveness of Email Marketing

Aug 10, 2018

4938 Luba Andreeva

How to Measure the Effectiveness of Email Marketing

Since social networks are often perceived as a place of informational noise, emails are still one of the most effective tools in internet marketing. But building a great email campaign is only half the battle. Just like every marketing activity, it should be assessed correctly. The received data will help you to understand the effectiveness of your newsletters subscription and show you what could be improved. We continue with the KPI topic, and today email marketing is on the agenda.

Open Rate

It is the simplest KPI to monitor and the one you should begin with. The essence is as clear as possible. This metric shows how many subscribers open your email. But take into account that there are unique and total openings. The number of total openings is usually larger than the unique ones because it includes a full number of openings regardless of whether they were made by the same subscriber or not.

To calculate the open rate it is necessary to divide the number of opened emails by the number of the delivered ones. The base level of the open rate is considered to be 24% but it may vary from one economic sector to another. If your rate is lower, there are a few ways to improve it:

  • Subject line. Pay attention to your email subject. It should be interesting, intriguing and short enough. 60 characters seem to be a perfect length but it is better to analyze your previous campaigns to find out what suits you the most.
  • Periodicity. Your mailing should be regular but not too frequent. Otherwise, you run the risk to become annoying instead of useful.
  • Segmentation. Your newsletters should be helpful, that’s why it is better to classify visitors of your online store and work with every group individually.
  • A/B tests. If you have several brilliant ideas and don’t know which one to choose, test them! Customer will give you the answers themselves.

Click-through rate

Click-through rate (also known as CTR) shows how many subscribers click on a specific link in the email. The larger this metric, the more successful your campaign is. Roughly speaking, it shows how many people visit your online store or make targeted actions due to the newsletters.

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The CTR is the number of clicks divided by the total number of delivered emails. It is usually lower than the open rate and varies greatly, but it is better to aim for 4%. To increase the rate, create a bright call-to-action button. It will help subscribers to notice it and click.

Click-to-open rate

Pay attention to this metric if you want to assess the content of your emails. It will show you what kind of information your customers find interesting and will help you to improve the effectiveness of the email campaign.

To calculate CTOR you should divide the number of unique clicks by the number of unique openings. It seems that CTR and CTOR show the same but actually they are different. CTR considers all in-box actions while CTOR deals only with the actions of the subscribers who opened the email. Thus, CTR is about the overall email performance and CTOR shows the performance of the content.

Email inactivity rate

Unfortunately, it is not enough to collect the base of subscribers and send them interesting content. You will still have inactive subscribers with zero engagement with your newsletters for a certain period of time and it will have a bad influence on your email campaigns. That’s why email inactivity rate is a very important KPI that shouldn’t be ignored.

Once you identify the inactive subscribers, start working with them:

  • Send a special email with a discount or gift. It may return the interest. But don’t forget to provide the opportunity to unsubscribe from the newsletters if a subscriber is really not interested in them.
  • If there is no feedback to the reactivation letter, it is better to send another one. Notify inactive subscribers that will be removed from the mailing list if they don’t reply to the email within a specified period of time.
  • Don’t be afraid to remove inactive subscribers. Remember, that quality is better than quantity. In fact, this rule works everywhere, not only in email marketing.

Encourage subscribers’ activity: suggest discount, promo codes, coupons. Motivate customers to read your emails. Interview them from time to time to understand what they are really interested in.

Conversion rate

This rate is also known as the response rate and will show you how many people open the email, click the link and then make a target action: buy your product, proceed to the registration or download something. Conversion deals with the returning of investment, you know how much money you spend on the email campaign and how many subscribers turn into buyers. To calculate this KPI divide the number of actions by the number of the delivered emails.

In this article, we have compiled top 5 metrics for email marketing. Together they will help you to assess your effort and show what to improve. Use them and send effective emails!

Andrey Dubina
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