E-mail Open Rate

E-mail open rate is the percentage of subscribers who open your e-mail. Sending e-mails to leads is still one of the best ways to reach potential customers and build lasting relationships with them. It is also a proven way to keep your retention rate high and to help customers find value in your service. Keep in mind that people’s inboxes are busy, and your e-mail is just one of many. Your chances of getting people to look at it and open it are naturally low. The key is value. If you do not provide enough value, people will delete your e-mail or even worse – send you straight to spam.

How to calculate Email open rate

Calculate your e-mail open rate by dividing the amount of unique opened e-mails by the amount of sent e-mails minus bounces. Bounces are the e-mails that could not be sent – for instance, since the e-mail address no longer exists.

If you sent 4100 e-mails, 100 e-mails bounced, and 400 opened your e-mail, your open rate is 10%

Email open rate = 400 / (4100 – 100) = 10%

How to improve E-mail open rate

1. Make it personal.
The best way to connect via e-mail is to address customers personally. You can do this by asking for the customers’ first names in the sign-up form. Yet, be careful not to ask for too much information up front. Every extra form field increases drop-off rates.

2. Communicate benefits, not features.
Communicating benefits instead of features can help you increase your open rate dramatically. Customers buy benefits, not features. A striking example for this is: “More legroom in an airplane” = feature vs. “A more relaxed travel experience” = benefit.

3. Time e-mails based on customer behavior.
Behavior-based e-mails show your customers that your e-mail is relevant since they directly support them on their journey.

4. Consider the Character-count.
Only if customers can immediately see what the e-mail is about will they open it. Since people often open e-mails on their smartphones, consider the character count before your subject line gets cut. Try to aim for subject lines with less than 40 characters to increase the chances of your subject line not getting cut on mobile devices.

5. Make e-mails mobile friendly
Consider mobile devices first and make sure buttons are easily clickable and that images load fast. Keep in mind that many people have disabled e-mail images on mobile devices to reduce data usage. Ensure that your e-mails look good even if people don’t see your pictures and that you use “bulletproof” e-mail buttons because they will be visible even when people have disabled the display of images.

E-mail marketing is a powerful method to reach your customers. Weekly or even daily e-mails may seem tempting as a way to stay top of mind with your product. However, if you start to spam, that is where your e-mails are going to land. Thus, be relevant to your customers and help them reach their goals. To get a holistic view, whether your e-mail campaign is successful, keep in mind to measure open rate, click-through rate, click to open rate as well as the conversion rate. That is significant because ultimately, what counts is not how many people opened the e-mail but how many went through the sales funnel and generated a conversion.

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