Technology

Report: Frequency, Audience Greatly Affect Email Engagement

By / Sep 27, 2016 (iStock/Thinkstock)

SendGrid’s new email benchmarking report offers data points that add up to a single key finding: It’s important to understand how your audience responds to how you send messages.

When it comes to email engagement, success means different things for different types of organizations.

Nowhere is that point more clear than in SendGrid’s Global Email Benchmark Report, released last week by the email delivery platform. The report—based on emails sent through the platform, which offers both transactional and traditional marketing-style email services—suggests that email-sending behaviors differ by industry.

Overall, SendGrid sees unique open rates of around 14.2 percent, unique click rates of 1.9 percent, and unique click-to-open rates of 13.6 percent. But the real story emerges when you break down the numbers based on the numerous industries that make up the company’s customer base. (The report covers 25 industries.)

For example, dating sites see an open rate of 18.8 percent and a click-to-open rate of 27.4 percent, despite a high send rate of 14.7 emails per month. On the other hand, daily-deals sites, along the lines of Groupon, send out nearly as many emails per month (14.6 messages), but open and click-to-open rates lag behind at 9.5 percent and 13.1 percent, respectively.

Some industries, such as education/training, have high open rates (in this case, 25.5 percent) but low click-to-open rates (10.6 percent).

Of particular interest to associations may be the breakdown of politics and advocacy emails, which have open rates of 30.2 percent and click-to-open rates of 13.1 percent. “This is one of the few industries that has a higher average of male recipients as well as a higher average of non-mobile usage,” the report states. “Consider optimizing email content for this audience.”

Many factors may be at play, including who the audience is in demographic terms, where they live, how they receive your messages (are they on Gmail, Hotmail, or another platform?), and how they respond to your messages.

For example, “if you’re a global sender, make sure to look at the types of email clients and devices that your recipients in different countries use,” the report says. “Mail.ru, Live, and GMX may not be common inbox providers in the United States, but they’re much more common in Russia, Germany, and Canada.”

And it may be important to tweak the knobs. In a set of recommendations, the company suggests occasionally updating your sending strategy to better target your desired audience. If you send a lot of emails, considering lowering your send rate. If you don’t send that many, you might be missing out on an opportunity, according to SendGrid.

Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is the social media journalist for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. More »

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