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Metrics to Measure for Email Marketing

Before your start your next email marketing campaign, do you know what parameters define it as a success? What are the aims of your campaign? If asked whether to send a newsletter to customers, most businesses would probably respond with a resounding “Yes!” It seems that everyone has a newsletter, and that means lots of competition for inbox space.

Without a clear plan, you could have a 100% delivered rate and fail at email marketing because you can’t monetize that traffic. Email is a cheap form of marketing, the ability to send thousands of emails to your list might only cost a few hundred dollars each month, but the returns can be exponential if you plan the campaigns properly. Start with online resources for your email marketing guidelines, but be proactive about your strategies. Establish in-house protocols and rules that keep your campaigns focused on driving customers to actionable places on your website.

Open Rate

The subject line of your email is, besides the “From” address, the first point of contact you have with a user in his or her inbox. A good subject line describes the email contents, entices the user to open the message, and does not sound like a spammer wrote it. Bad subject lines use words like “free” and other throwaways like “interest rates.” These words are generally dead giveaways that signal a message is promotional.

Review your email subject lines and ask yourself how you can personalize your messaging for your audience. If your email service provider allows location or name tags, use them in your messaging to let users know you are talking to them.

Click Thru Rate

Once a user has opened your email, the click is king. Does your email copy drone on with a link at the bottom, or do you pepper your content with relevant, in-content links to your site?  Is your content formatted well, or is the text jumbled with images? Review how your message will look in different browsers. Heavily image based emails may also trip spam filters that look for images in an email, so make sure that your content contains links to your website that users can follow.

Do not flood your email with links. A few links in key positions will work better than a wall of links that beg for a click. Use the anchor text that you write to provide a solid jump point for users to get more information about the ideas you are discussing.

Conversion Rate

Conversions mean different things to different businesses.  A blogger might measure conversions based on number of hits to an affiliate page, whereas an ecommerce business might view conversions as purchases in a store. Figure out how to measure that on your end so that you have metrics you can rely on. Google Analytics will let you set specific goals, including funnels with pages a user must visit before making a purchase.

For example, a goal for your email campaign might lead a user toward a landing page built specifically for this campaign. Give this page its own URL, and add that to your goal funnel. When a user clicks your email to visit that landing page, you will know that the conversion came from the email and can use that metric to judge whether your campaign works.

Delivery Rate

In order to get a precise idea of how your email deliverability is actually working, you might need to consult an app like Mail Monitor. If you do not wish to use an app, you can approximate deliverability by reviewing the bounces for your email. If you notice that a particular ISP is bouncing more than others, open a seed account for that service provider and try to see if you receive your own emails.

Delivery rate is often based on reputation, so give your email campaign an objective review to see where you can improve. Are customers able to reach you? Do you use spam terminology in your email, or do you have too many images and too little text? These are simple fixes many legitimate email marketers make that can hurt your reputation over time.

Lay off sending to those addresses, and review your sends to see if customers have stopped opening your email. It can be tough to pull the plug on a contact, because it means you might miss out on business. However, spam the wrong group of people and your reputation can be deeply affected. Carefully monitor the health of your list, and constantly brainstorm new ways to engage them.