Email Trends Report: Opens on the Rise, But Click Rates Stagnate

The latest edition of SendGrid’s Global Email Benchmark Report finds that readers are more likely to open their emails but less likely to click on the links in messages. The trend is particularly pronounced for nonprofits.

The good news is that people are more likely to open your emails. But shed a tear for that all-important click-to-open rate, which is struggling to hold its own.

That’s a key finding from email marketing firm SendGrid, whose latest Global Email Benchmark Report [registration], released last week, found a sharp increase in opens overall—an aggregate open rate of 18 percent, up from 14.6 percent in 2017—and a click-to-open rate that continues to slump. The report showed that while the aggregate click rate increased to 2 percent from 1.7 percent the year prior, the modest increase in clicks compared to opens meant the click-to-open rate fell from 11.6 percent to 11.1 percent.

In its report, SendGrid suggests that its findings, based on data from 50 billion emails sent by 100,000 senders to 2 billion recipients, highlight changes in the ways that users read emails. Another factor worth noting: Users are far more likely to open emails on mobile devices (55.6 percent) versus non-mobile devices (44.4 percent).

“These changes reinforce our belief that recipients are becoming more discerning on what they click on,” the report states. “While recipients may open more emails, they aren’t necessarily going to click on links within the message.”

The report also suggests that senders are changing their thought processes, too—often taking a more transactional approach with their emails, which means that more messages are being sent overall, though fewer overall messages are going to each recipient.

In addition, the report broke down click-and-open rates among 17 different industries, including retail, media, entertainment, telecom, and numerous others. Among nonprofits, the percentages weren’t exactly worth writing home about—with aggregate open rates of 13 percent and click-to-open rates of just 5.7 percent. The report says that’s the lowest click-to-open rate of any industry—with computers and electronics, on the other hand, having the highest click-to-open rates.

“You can imagine receiving a nonprofit message that you would open, but not be super inclined to click on a link to donate all the time,” SendGrid data scientist Aaron Beach said in the report.

The report, beyond highlighting overall trends, also speaks to a number of other important factors, including the need to keep an eye on bounce rate and the fact that while Gmail and Yahoo are popular in the U.S., other providers, such as Mail.Ru and GMX Mail are far more popular elsewhere.

(dem10/iStock/Getty Images Plus)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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