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Measure This Not That: How to Be Smarter About Email Metrics

Nov 12, 2015   |   2 min read

Knowledge Center  ❯   Blog

measure-email-metricsAs an email marketer, you’re responsible for keeping up with a lot of information. From spying new trends to obtaining, analyzing and applying customer data, there’s a lot on your plate. When we’re this busy, it’s easy to fall into familiar habits-especially when doing things the way you’ve always done them still gets results. But one area where you may need to revisit your strategy is measuring email metrics.

Navigating the complex world of metrics isn’t easy. Fortunately, TowerData is here to help. Our top three suggestions can help you be smarter about the metrics you track, so you can make sure you’re getting the most out of each and every campaign.

Measure Click Rates Instead of Just Open Rates

This testing case study on Which Test Won indicates that maybe open rates are not the most important metric in successful email marketing. In the test, one version of an email newsletter had a higher open rate, but the other version had a higher click rate. Had these marketers stopped their analysis once they saw the higher open rates for the one version, they would have missed a very important insight.

As summarized by one of our favorite statements from the case study: “We all know just because a message gets opened doesn’t mean it’ll get read.” The moral of the story? While it’s important to know whether people are opening your emails, knowing whether people are engaging with your emails can be more telling. Of the two, click rates are the more valuable conversion metric to track.

Measure New Subscriber Engagement Instead of Just List Growth

Another metric that preoccupies many an email marketer is list growth. But in the race to add as many subscribers as possible to your lists, we urge you to slow down and think about quality over quantity. After all, the best results come not from simply adding random addresses to your list; the results come from growing your list with customers who are well-qualified and most likely to show interest in your products and services.

Certainly, list growth is good. But if that’s as far as your metrics go, you’re missing major insights. Take the time to track which new subscribers are actually engaging with your brand and converting into paying customers, and you’ll have a better understanding of the true return on investment from your growth strategy.

Measure Hard Bounces Instead of Just Unsubscribes

If you still think “unsubscribe” is a dirty word, it may be time to take a different approach. Unsubscribes can indicate that your list is actually winnowing itself. Without any effort on your part, subscribers who aren’t interested and aren’t likely to make a purchase are voluntarily taking the time to remove themselves from your list, sparing you the negative side effects of poor engagement.

On the other hand, hard bounces are always bad news. Hard bounces indicate that an email was not received by its intended target, which can signal a database issue that demands your immediate attention. If this is the case, it may be time to consider email validation to ensure your list is sparkling clean, and that each email address on your list is accurate.

With the right data in your hands, there is virtually no limit to what your email campaigns can accomplish. By knowing which metrics tell the full story, you can make better-informed decisions and enjoy greater gains from your efforts.

Interested in learning more about leveraging data to improve results? Discover how to increase email click-through rates by 43%!

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