July 20, 2022

Email Marketing Metrics: 5 to Monitor Closely

By: Mary Hiers

Email marketing metrics confirm the tremendous value of this type of marketing. Perhaps the most eye-opening statistic is that for every dollar spent on email marketing, companies bring in $38

To improve your email marketing, you first have to measure how it is performing now. Then you have to measure its performance at regular intervals. 

There are countless email marketing metrics you can follow. Some businesses choose to monitor every metric available to gain enough information to tailor individual aspects of every email campaign.

But not every business has the time or resources to monitor everything. If you have wondered which email marketing metrics to monitor, here are five that can give you a lot of insight into what works.

1. Open Rate

Across industries, the average open rate for emails is 11.33%, with a high of 19.36% in the publishing industry and a low of 7.17% in the travel industry. In other words, you can send out an “average” marketing email and still expect a lot of people to open it.

Steps you can take to increase your email marketing open rate include:

  • Constructing a short, powerful subject line
  • Scheduling them to arrive at the optimum time (many email marketing platforms can determine this for you)
  • Understanding your audience and writing your emails to address their challenges
  • Segmenting your audience and tailoring emails to each segment
  • Keeping your email address list up to date

One caveat applies here. Expect open rate data to become somewhat less reliable for recipients who use Apple Mail.  The Mail Privacy Protection offered to Apple Mail users who upgraded to iOS 15 in late 2021 will prevent you from gathering their email open rates. 

You should continue to employ best practices for getting high open rates. If you do, you should be able to use open rate data for non-Apple Mail users with confidence.

2. Click-Through Rate (CTR)

Your email marketing click-through rate (CTR) is simply the percentage of people on your recipient list who clicked on a link (or multiple links) in your email. Many email marketing platforms collect this data for you.

The higher the CTR, the more compelling your email message was. Brief, well-written emails with a clear message and call to action are baseline steps for maximizing CTR. You can do more, however:

  • Place no more than two or three links in your emails. The more links you place, the less clear it is what you want the recipient to do. Also, the more CTRs you have to monitor.
  • Choose your calls to action based on what you know about your most loyal email subscribers.
  • Keep emails to less than 15 to 20 lines of text, with only one or two relevant images.
  • Be perfectly clear about the action you want readers to take.
  • Use a bold CTA button.
  • Don’t use boring text on your CTA buttons. “Get My Free Report” is more compelling than “Learn More.”

3. Conversion Rate

The conversion rate is similar to the click-through rate. It measures the rate of people who click on a link in your email and then take another action.

Suppose you send out an email asking customers to complete a survey. When you include a link to the survey in the email, the conversion rate tells you how many people not only opened the email but also clicked on the survey link and completed the survey.

Conversion rates can also show you how many people are one step closer to making a purchase. If you send out a marketing email promoting a sale and include a link to “Shop Now,” you can determine how many people went from opening the email to actually purchasing something.

In other words, conversion rates help you understand whether the money you put into your email campaign pays off in terms of increased business. 

4. Unsubscribe Rate

High unsubscribe rates indicate that something is wrong. Unsubscribe rates are typically greater than zero. People occasionally want to clean out their email inbox and do that by unsubscribing to emails that they don’t find relevant. That’s not a big deal.

However, if the unsubscribe rate increases markedly, you need to learn why. Some businesses do this by taking unsubscribers to a web page with a drop-down menu listing reasons for unsubscribing. For example, the person canceling their email subscription will be asked to indicate whether it’s because they changed jobs, moved to a different location, or don’t find the emails interesting.

If you get a spate of unsubscribes based on something you can control, like the quality of offers or the quality of the email content, then it’s time to revisit your email marketing strategy.

5. List Growth Rate

Your email marketing list should grow over time. How fast it grows depends on the potential size of your market, your other marketing efforts, and how captivating your emails are, among other factors. 

If your email list stagnates or shrinks, it’s time to find out why. It’s possible that you have reached all the people in your service area that it’s possible to reach by email. That’s not necessarily bad. 

As is the case with the unsubscribe rate, serious decreases in your list growth rate warrant research into why it’s happening. It may be time to learn more about what your competitors are doing to determine if they are siphoning customers from you.

Two More Metrics if You Want to Dig Deeper

These five key metrics for email marketing can help you keep your strategy on track. If you want to go further and compare how much you spend on email to how much money it brings in, you can track overall ROI and revenue per email.

Overall ROI

Overall ROI gives you the return on investment in your email marketing. It involves a simple formula:

{[$ earned from a campaign – $ spent on a campaign] / $ spent on campaign} x 100

Email marketing isn’t free, because you invest in writing and sending the emails, and you often invest in an email marketing platform. But the cost is low, and email marketing has the highest ROI of any digital marketing strategy.

Revenue per Campaign

Revenue per campaign is even simpler to calculate than ROI:

[$ earned from a campaign – $ spent on a campaign] = revenue per campaign

Again, because of the low cost of email marketing, you can expect to earn far more dollars than you invest in an email campaign.

Track What You Want to Improve

In email marketing, as in any other business aspect you want to improve, you have to understand what is working and what is not. That way you can double down on what works and make changes to what doesn’t.

While email marketing is straightforward and inexpensive, tracking email marketing metrics can become a bigger task than you anticipated. We can help make it more manageable.

Our tools for email marketing campaigns were developed by our expert team and were designed specifically for each industry we serve. If you want to invest in email marketing but don’t have the time to track email marketing metrics, schedule a call with us. We would love to discuss ways to make email marketing pay off big for your business.

Like this post? Share it with your friends!

The world of advertising and marketing is always changing. From social media use to psychological messaging, every day there are new questions. We cover everything from the simple questions to the deep and complicated ones.

To grow as a business, you have to make connections.

How do you make connections?
We’ll show you.

Sign up today to get answers to marketing questions in your inbox every week.

* indicates required

Recommendations for
Your Business

It’s tough navigating your website alone. We’re here to help! Chat with one of our website experts.