5 Things You Can Learn from Email Open Rates


What is an ‘open rate’? Is it just more Internet and marketing jargon that sounds impressive, but is really just another unimportant metric that you shouldn’t be entertaining?

The answer is no. Open rates are the lifeline of your email marketing campaign, the yin to your yang, the bread to your butter. In other words, they’re dead important.

In simple terms, they allow you to see how often your email is opened. Good open rates are usually an indication that you have a catchy subject line or are offering something interesting to your target audience.

So how can you ensure you’re utilising your email marketing campaign effectively through measuring open rates as a metric? And what can you learn from your email open rates?

1. Keep track of your open rates year on year and month on month

Data is vital to see the improvements (or failures) in your open rates. It also allows you to view whether or not seasonality affects when and why your emails are opened. If you’re a deckchair supplier, then don’t be surprised if you’re not seeing high open rates in December. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

Email Open Rates
2. Check which days you’re most popular

Alike to the first point, some days may be more successful for you than others. Similarly, some times of the day may be more popular for you than others. If you’re a supermarket, it’s probably a clever idea to email people close to lunchtime or dinnertime, strike when they’re hungry. Tasty.

3. Avoid using spammy words, phrase, and punctuation

NO ONE LIKES TO BE SHOUTED AT!!!! So don’t include caps or too many exclamation marks within your subject line. It doesn’t grab attention. It just sends off warning signs and decreases your open rates.

4. No one likes to be picky, but your list quality matters

It doesn’t matter how many people you have on your mailing list; if they’re not interested in your services or products, they won’t open the email. Although we don’t like to be picky, you should be. Think carefully about whom you should be targeting; whether that’s people you know definitely will want and need your service or product, or whether you aim at people before they even know. Make sure you’re managing your lists and placing people into targeted segments.

5. If you’re not seeing improvements through your email marketing reports…

Then fear not! There are a number of things you should be addressing. Keep your subject lines punchy and interesting; make sure your not falling into the spam filter; check seasonality aspects and times of day.

If you’re looking to develop and expand your email marketing lists, then contact us today to find out more about our data. Stay tuned for our next installment of this series, when we take a look at click-through rates. It’s exciting, it’s exhilarating; it’s email marketing.


About the Author

  • John Keating

    Founder and Managing Director of Databroker, John Keating lives and breathes the world of marketing lists and data. Based in Cheshire, John helps businesses win more customers and get better sales results through data and direct marketing expertise. With coffee running through his veins, he enthusiastically battles each day, boosting one direct marketing campaign at a time and driving Databroker onwards. Hates: Buzzwords and waffle, the words “passionate”, “solutions”, “synergy” and website pictures of limes, seedlings or the blonde with the headset on; she doesn’t work there. Loves: All things data but more importantly his dog, Manchester United, the stars, Thailand and his wife (NB: there is no order to that list…) You can connect with John on LinkedIn or Google+

    Web: http://www.data-broker.co.uk

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