Digital Marketing Dictionary

Open rate - What is it?

The open rate refers to the balance of readings received by emails that are sent in an email marketing campaign. It serves to estimate the effectiveness of an investment in customer acquisition. We explain it in detail below.

What exactly does the open rate consist of?

The open rate is a marketing metric that measures the percentage of emails opened. Although it is a general indicator of outreach effectiveness, it can be a misleading metric for online marketers.

What open rate is acceptable?

For the advertising medium, email open rates are considered acceptable if they range between 15% and 30% on average in most sectors. Topics of personal interest (religion, hobbies, photos, etc.) tend to be better received, while market topics (e-commerce, coupon offers, and so on) are less popular. Finally, daily offers have the worst receptivity figures by email recipients.

The cost of trying to raise these averages is generally not cost-effective. However, if an individual company’s rate is significantly below the industry average, then we should know that there are things that can be done to improve it…. And it will be a worthwhile investment.

Why are open rates a misleading measure of success?

Really, the key is not how many people will end up reading a company’s messages; what matters is how many of them eventually move through the sales funnel and become paying customers. An email can be opened many times but result in user frustration with the sender. Conversely, there are emails with a low click through rate that may have a higher conversion rate.

It can also be used as a complementary metric when A/B testing subject lines in an email campaign, as it alters the results. In addition, it can be an indicator of brand goodwill over time: when open rates increase, it may also be increasing consumer confidence online.

Ways to improve your open rate

To achieve high figures you should know that it is not so much about doing all the things right, but it is better to have a good execution to avoid doing some things wrong. Several common mistakes can lead to lower than normal open rates, so consider reviewing your current marketing campaigns to improve on the following:

  • Remove hard bounces. If when you send emails, they receive a hard bounce (i.e. the email was sent to an address that no longer exists), this will cause an artificial decrease in the open rate. To fix this, you’ll need to purge those accounts from your contact list.
  • Use targeted mailing lists. Targeted mailing lists can help you limit your emails to preferentially reach the people who are most relevant to your business. This means that the emails will be more likely to be opened. Modify your database to focus.
  • Format dedicated to mobile users. Nowadays, many people consult messages on their smartphones, so your messages must adapt their appearance to these screens by switching to a responsive format.

When you run an email marketing campaign to grow as a company, it is important to get a good opening rate. And, of course, end up converting your contacts into customers through appropriate calls to action.