What To Measure With Email Marketing

What To Measure With Email Marketing

Measuring your email has gotten a little trickier today as had a lot of things with recent Apple updates.  But what you don’t measure does not get improved! So let’s dive into the important KPI email metrics so you can measure the success of email marketing.

Open Rate

This is the measure of how many people open your email in relation to how many people got your email.  Whether someone opens your email has a lot to do with your subject lines. 

But there have been some recent changes with IOS15 that affect open rates.  Anyone using Apple’s mail app for all Apple devices is now being masked and emailEmail Open rates with IOS15 providers can no longer tell if someone opened an email or anything related to email. 

This all happened in June of 2021.  This is a big deal because Apple being the default mail application for iPhone users means that 52% of users are using it.  What is happening with this metric since Apple is preloading the image is that open rates are going up, but they are not reliable anymore. So users are being served images not your actual email. 

This plays many aspects of emailing marketing:

  • This effect doing email resends to those who haven’t opened their email. Since Apple mail users will appear as they are opening every email, they won’t get the resend.
  • This is also affecting automated email series that are sometimes triggered when someone opens an email.
  • Since your email list is often cleaned up by those who have engaged with your list by open rate this will also affect this.
  • Lastly, A/B testing of subject lines was temporarily affected since we can’t rely on who actually opened the email.

You should not give up on it though and focus on improving open rates.  Just know that what you are looking at is not accurate.  Know that it is now inflated and you have a new norm.  You need to not look at year over year but rather month over month.  You need to also be careful of using email benchmarks that might be out of date from the industry. 

You can work on your subject lines by asking questions, being direct, keeping it short, creating urgency, creating attention with thank you messages, focus on pain points. Did you know that over half of the email recipients open an email based on the subject line alone? This makes it a crucial aspect of your emails. 

So what can we look at?

First just sending an email and staying top of mind can be of value in that you are not being forgotten.  So there are hidden values in staying in the inbox as long as they don’t unsubscribe!  Also, someone might get your email and just not need the particular service you are talking about at that time. But here are some metrics you can look at.

Bounce rate

This is the % of emails that never made it to your potential or client’s email box! Yes, that does happen. You need to track this measurement and look for ways to improve it.  

There are two types of bounces, both soft and hard.  A soft bounce is just a temporary problem such as server problems or the person you are sending emails to has a full inbox. These are less worrisome as hard bounces.  

Hard bounces mean you have emails that are not valid and having too many of those can be detrimental to email marketing. 

 It affects your reputation for sending emails from your IP or what is associated with your website domain. You need to remove these emails from your list as soon as it happens. If you end up with a bad reputation you will not be able to send emails at all 

List growth rate

This metric all depends on if you are using methods to grow your list, which you should! It expands your reach to people in their inboxes  It also is going to be looking at how many unsubscribes you had. 

If you are having a lot of unsubscribes then your user is not finding the content you are sending of any value.  Did you know there is a natural decline in emails list by about 22% every year? You need to get busy with ways to grow your list!

Email Marketing list Growth

Forwarding/Email Sharing

This is a measure of how often users and forwarding and share your email with their users.  This is an extended reach of those on your list already! If your content marketing is good enough then your user will take action by sharing to ensure someone else sees it then you have really hit the nail.  This means your content can’t be boring and has to excite the email recipient. 

Click Rate

This is a measure of how many people click from the email to the website. To get better at this provide teasers to where only the information they really want is located on the website. Simply saying “learn more” is not going to be enough, what are they going to get? 

You want to get people to your website so your new valuable content that was created is just as important as what you do to get them to click through.  They very much work together. 

You can also track engagement with your emails by adding polls and surveys with then emails.

Conversion rate

This metric you would see in Google Analytics and it measures the number of people (if set up right) who take the desired actions of the website such as phone calls, form fills, and purchasers.  Your tracking might be off though if your emails are going to existing users and they already have your numbers saved.

This metric can also be misleading in understanding the type of email that you are sending.  Email marketing can sometimes be higher up in the funnel where the content of the email is meant to inform and educate and stay top of the mind.  The content might not have anything that would cause someone to take action right then and there but it might get them closer as they learn more about how you can help solve their problems with your product or service.  As long as they are not unsubscribing they are finding value in learning more about what you do. 

But if the content you are sending is offers and discounts or you are asking for a direct respense then you should be measuring conversions.

Tracking and measuring emails has changed just like anything in Digital marketing but the truth is that email marketing still works.  If you are still struggling with how email marketing is part of the funnel head on over to our guide on different types of marketing and where it lands in the funnel! You need to think through the funnel though of why are you sending an email and what great valuable content are you sending.