The 5 email marketing metrics you should be tracking

Libby Margo in Email marketing on 7th of Mar 2019
email marketing metrics

Email marketing metrics

We know how powerful email marketing is, and you may have followed our tips to create the most amazing newsletter ever. The next step involves seeing how well your campaign performed. After all, there’s no point executing the perfect email campaign if you’re not tracking and evaluate its success.

Measuring the performance of your email campaign involves looking at several different metrics. While there’s no need to analyze every single metric, it’s important to determine which metric you should pay attention to and which metrics you don’t have to worry about as much. To get you started, we’ve compiled a list of the 5 most popular metrics that Autopiloters use:

Open rate

This metric tells us how many subscribers opened your email. The higher the rate, the better you’re performing, right? Not according to many who consider the open rate as a “vanity metric.” On paper, an open rate of 82% sounds phenomenal but if no one was clicking on the embedded links or responding to your calls to action (CTA), it doesn’t matter.

Despite this, the open rate still serves as a key metric for email marketing. After all, it’s a reliable indicator of how many readers have cast their eyes over your email. This metric also helps marketers understand whether their readers are engaged; it also assesses the effectiveness of the subject line, the key factor that prompts the recipient to open the email.

Click-through rate

Often referred to as CTR, this metric tells us how many people clicked on the links embedded in your email. Strongly correlated with user engagement, the CTR tells us whether:

  • Your content is interesting or useful (and therefore, engaging)
  • The CTA is effective
  • Your email is easy to understand and respond to

If your open rate is high but you’re not seeing good results elsewhere, you can look at your CTR to identify specific areas of the email that may need work.

Bounce rate

Sometimes, emails don’t get delivered; the bounce rate refers to the percentage of emails that are returned to us. There are many reasons why this happens; perhaps there was a temporary or permanent issue with your recipient’s mail server, or maybe the email address was entered incorrectly (oops!).

It’s normal for new email lists to have a higher-than-average bounce rate. Over time though, the bounce rate should plateau over time; ideally, you should aim for a bounce rate of less than 1%.

Unsubscribe rate

It’s not a great feeling when people unsubscribe from your emails. That said, it’s worth paying attention to the reasons why they hit the “unsubscribe” button. Perhaps your readers aren’t interested in your so-called offers, maybe they don’t find your content engaging, or maybe they don’t actually mind reading your emails but they think you’re sending way too many of them. Our goal is to keep the unsubscribe rate as low as possible; at the same time, we must accept the fact that people will unsubscribe here and there — and we must let them leave with any issues.

Conversion rate

This is a crucial metric in any campaign. The conversion rate is calculated by dividing the number of conversions (for example, sales or sign-ups) by the number of emails either delivered, opened, or clicked — and it needs to be as high as possible. After all, more conversions equal more revenue.

What should your conversion rate be? It depends on your goal. You can get started by benchmarking your conversion rate directly from recipients clicking on your item and taking action, then optimize it by continual testing and tweaking. And if you notice your conversion rate dropping at any point, then something needs to be refined (for example, your messaging or content experience).

Putting it all together

Good marketing automation software such as Autopilot makes it easy for you to track all of these metrics (and more) in one spot. Best of all, Autopilot allows you to visualize your entire email marketing journey so you can easily identify weak spots in the campaign as shown in the template below.

Measuring and analyzing your email marketing metrics is the key to increasing your ability to qualify and convert more quality leads via email marketing. And the actions you take as a result of the metrics you track will determine the direction of your efforts and the quality of your outcomes.

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