This article is about how to set and track your email marketing to ensure you achieve a productive result. If you want to get better and productive results from your email campaigns, you need to learn how to set your benchmark.

Email marketing is a digital marketing strategy which involves sending emails to prospective customers and existing customers. It involves the conversion of prospects into customers and one-time customer to loyal and regular customers. Email marketing is a very useful and effective digital marketing strategy. In case you haven’t started email marketing, you need to start now because it can help with awareness greatly.

It’s one of the most effective ways to communicate with customers. A large number of consumers prefer to interact best with their brands through email. Email marketing is growing bigger and better every day. In 2017, the number of email users was estimated to be around 3.7 billion globally. This number is expected to increase to 4.2 billion by 2021. This great figure is one of the reasons why every business should hold onto email marketing strongly.

Before going forward with email marketing, it’s important to set realistic expectations and a set number towards achieving a goal. This is exactly why it is important to understand the reason for analyzing email marketing benchmark in your industry.

What metrics matter

The figures actually vary across industries. The actual metric is however usually similar. These figures are what you should constantly monitor. They improve as you run your email campaigns. The following are the metrics that matter when comparing industries.

Open rate

Open rate is the measure of the number of people who open your email. It is usually calculated as the number of emails opened /email delivered. There are several factors that can affect your open rate. One of the most important factors is to consider the overall size of your list. The bigger your list is, the lower the open rate.

How to improve your open rate

  • Focus on your subject line: it’s one of the factors that can make or mar your open rate. You need to make it catchy and attractive. You need to make it personal by adding some personalized features. Studies have shown that emails with personalized subject lines have an open rate of 50%.
  • Segmentation: segmenting your campaign can help to increase your open rate. The new basic strategy in email marketing is segmentation. This is basically for good reasons. Campaigns that are segmented by interest, user behavior and others have a higher open rate than non-segmented campaigns.

Breakdown : Major benchmarks for email marketing are catchy and attractive headlines, personalization and segmentation. They increase open rate.

Click-through rate

CTR plays a major role in marketing generally, and email marketing is not excluded. Click-through rate is the number clicks generated from email marketing. When you send a mail to your prospects and existing customers, the fraction of them that open the email is the measure of your click-through rate.

Simply put, it is the measure of email recipients who clicked on the link in your email. You can calculate CTR as the sum of clicks/emails delivered. There are several factors that determine an email’s CTR. They include variation in season e.g holiday campaigns, and another most important factor is the quality of your email content. Consider the following tips to generate high CTR :

  • Personalization: oh yeah, it works pretty good for CTRs also. Personalized emails are capable of improving your CTR by 14% on the average and conversions by 10%.
  • First name basis : This is a very good way to attract recipients attention. It works 99% of the time. Increase your CTR by using the recipient’s first name in the subject line.
  • Get social : adding social sharing buttons can also increase your CTR.
  • Timing is important. Know the right time to send in emails. Saturday is considered the best time to send emails.

Bounce Rate

 It is important to pay strict attention to the bounce rate. Bounce rate is the number of your emails that don’t get delivered. There are 2 kinds of bounces, they are the hard bounce and the soft bounce.

The hard bounce is those emails sent to non-existing or invalid emails. A soft bounce, on the other hand, is an email that could not be delivered as a result of a delivery error such as a full inbox. Most times, the bounce rate is not within the sender’s control. In order to improve your bounce rate, you may need to keep your email list up-to-date. An outdated list is likely to contain a large number of outdated email addresses. So,  ensure that you clean up and update your email list once in a while.

Unsubscribe Rate

No one would like to have a large figure here. It is a measure of the number of people who choose to unsubscribe from your email list. There are a lot of reasons why a subscriber may choose to unsubscribe from your list. It could be due to content irrelevancy, low quality, etc. Most times, an improvement is needed on your part to prevent unsubscribe rate. The following are the ways to decrease or prevent your unsubscribe rate:

  • Develop quality contents: contents are very important to your unsubscribe rate. Ensure that you constantly deliver the quality contents you promised your customers to them. Don’t compromise at all. Make sure you engage them with your content. You should either make your email content in-depth or include the link for the in-depth subject in the email you are sending out.
  • Segmentation is also very important here. Divide your content into segments, it allows you to tailor your content in a way that would interest your recipient.
  • Set up drip campaigns. They are designed to help you create thoughtful and engaging contents and to retain your customers as possible.

How to Set Your Email Marketing Benchmarks

The benefit of tracking the metrics of your campaign is to track your success. It helps you to set and track the overall goal and objective to work towards. The ultimate goal of you learning about email marketing is to generate as much traffic as possible to your website.

With learning your most valuable metric, it would be an indicator of how much traffic comes through email marketing. Determining the metrics that matter most helps you to set a benchmark for comparison. Ideally, it is important to monitor your campaign so you can know where to direct more work too.

For email campaigns that you’ve run in the past, you can have your benchmark set based on past performance. If the CTR from your past campaign is passed an average of 8, you need to work towards exceeding that.

Information about your progress can be tracked through most email software including Constant Contact, MailChimp, Emma, etc. You should always keep a close eye on all your campaign result to ensure that you are making an effort toward your benchmark mark goal.

To wrap it up, the benchmark goal is just as important as email marketing itself. It is important that your note the average rate internally in order to know what area to improve on. It is also important to compare across your Industry, it helps you to get accurate figures.