131104-email-metrics

Important E-Mail Marketing Metrics and Why They Matter

E-mail marketing is one of the best ways to directly reach your potential and current customers. If you aren’t analyzing your results, you will not be able to get the most out of your efforts.

The following are standard metrics e-mail marketers should monitor and how you can use them to modify your e-mail marketing campaign for success.

Spam Score

Before you send an e-mail to your mailing list, you’ll see a spam score. The spam score is your e-mail service provider’s way of telling you how likely your e-mail is to be marked as spam, either by your subscribers or their e-mail programs. The spam score is affected by links, HTML code, keywords, and many other factors. If your e-mail service provider doesn’t give a good explanation as to why it scored your e-mail the way it did, you can try outside tools like Contactology’s Spam Check which will give you a score and some suggestions on what to change.

Opens

Having a mailing list with 100k subscribers isn’t important. Having a mailing list with 100k subscribers who open their e-mail, however, is. Since most e-mail service providers charge you by your number of subscribers, one thing you will want to keep on top of is whether your subscribers are actually active. If you have subscribers who haven’t opened an email from your business in over a year (and you send them weekly), it might be time to purge your mailing list.

While it might be tempting to simply delete all of your inactive subscribers, you might want to make one more attempt at communicating with them. Send an e-mail to just the people who haven’t opened your e-mails with a catchy subject line like “We miss you.” or “What you’ve been missing.” Then proceed to convince your subscriber why they should be opening your e-mails again on a regular basis, either by sharing some updates on what they’ve been missing or a preview of what they can expect.

If your inactive subscribers don’t open this “final resort” e-mail, it might be time to export them and remove them from your list.

Clicks

When your goals is to get your e-mail subscribers to click through to your website, you will want to track clicks. Tracking your clicks can help in two ways. First, it shows whether your active subscribers are actually interested in the products or services you are selling. Second, it can help you identify your subscriber’s interests to craft even more optimized emails. For example, if you send out a newsletter with your newest jeans, and the person has the choice to click through to skinny, bootcut, or wide-leg jeans, then your next e-mail might focus on your latest bootcut jeans only.

Unsubscribes

The larger your list, the more likely you are going to get a few unsubscribes per e-mail you send out. Your real mission is to watch out for any e-mails that generate a high number of unsubscribes – this is one you will need to evaluate to determine exactly what led to subscriber’s being dissatisfied enough to want to be removed from your list. If you find out what that element is, be sure to avoid it in future e-mails.

Complaints

What’s worse than an unsubscriber? A complaint. This is where a subscriber tells your e-mail service provider that your email was spammy or unwelcome. The more complaints you receive, the more it hurts your deliverability and reputation with your provider.

So how can you keep complaint rates down? For starters, don’t neglect your list. If someone signs up today and then doesn’t get an e-mail from you until six months from now, they will likely forget why they signed up and could potentially be irritated enough to mark your message as spam and complain about it when unsubscribing from your list.

Also, remind people when they signed up in the e-mail. Sometimes just a simple reminder that hey, you signed up two months ago, is enough to trigger that memory and keep your subscriber in the know.

Conversions

If you’re not doing conversion tracking for your e-mail marketing campaigns, then you’re losing out on some real value in determining what email campaigns work best for your business. The easiest way to track conversions is to have goals set up in your Google Analytics and use UTM parameters on the links that you share in your e-mail. UTM parameters are simply tags that tell Google Analytics where a visitor came from. You can use this free tool to automatically create UTM parameters for URLs.

A few days after your e-mail goes out, you can then go to your Google Analytics and under Acquisition, you’ll see campaigns. This is where you can find out if this month’s newsletter led to more visitors to your website and a higher rate of conversions compared to last month’s.

Measuring Results

If you use MailChimp, Constant Contact, or SendGrid for your e-mail marketing needs, you can connect them to your SumAll account to see how your e-mail campaigns activity affects your main website’s traffic and sales.

Also, be sure to add in your social media accounts to see if sharing content from your blog helps boost your followers and engagement on networks like Twitter and Facebook. Sign up for free to get started.

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Kristi Hines

Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, professional blogger, and social media enthusiast. You can follow her on Twitter and .

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