Email Metrics: Resources That Make Reporting Easier

E-mail Metrics

When reporting email campaign metrics to our B2B clients, we invariably get asked, “How do my results compare against industry averages?” or “What’s a unique click-through?”  Here’s a look at a couple of the more popular resources we use to answer these questions.

MailChimp’s Average Email Campaign Stats of MailChimp Customers by Industry chart is a frequent go-to reference for comparing the performance of our client’s email against industry averages.  The chart is based on research MailChimp conducted over 273 million emails and provides percentages (by industry) for open rates, click rates, soft bounces, hard bounces, etc.  We think it provides an excellent snapshot of performance for some key email metrics by industry segment.

Another often used resource are the definitions for various email metrics found at the Interactive Advertising Bureau.   Here are some of the IAB definitions we tend to use to define email performance metrics for our clients.

  • Total Email Opens.  This metric attempts to answer the question, “How many times did a person look at the email campaign?” In practice, recording of user activity is a way to confirm that the recipient viewed the message.
  • Unique Email Opens.  This metric is similar to an Email Open, but here, duplicate opens are eliminated. This attempts to answer the question, “How many unique individuals viewed this Email campaign?”
  • Total Email Click-Throughs. This metric attempts to answer the question, “How many times did a person click on a link or multiple links within this email?” This may or may not include clicks on unsubscribe links or other links.
  • Unique Email Click-Throughs. This metric attempts to answer the question, “How many unique people clicked on a link or multiple links within this email?” To illustrate, if one person clicked on two links, this would only count as one unique click-through. If one person clicked on the same link twice, this would only count as one unique click-through.
  • Click-to-Open Rate. This metric attempts to answer the question, “Of the Unique Email Opens, how many individuals took an action?” It is generally calculated as either Unique Click-Throughs over Unique Email Opens; or Total Email Click-Throughs over Total Email Opens

Just two of the many tools available to B2B marketers to help define appropriate metrics for e-mail campaigns, measure performance along those metrics and compare that performance against other campaigns in similar industries.  We’d be interested in hearing which tools you use!

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