Email Open Rates Continue To Rise

October 7, 2009

by Gavin O’Malley, MediaPost

For the fourth quarter in a row, email open-rates were up across a cross-section of industries, according to new data from a study from direct marketing agency Epsilon. What’s more, 14 of the 16 industries measured saw an increase year-over-year by the close of the second quarter.

“While email marketing volumes have increased substantially, email remains a highly effective channel for communication,” said Kevin Mabley, SVP of strategic and analytic consulting at Epsilon.

“The top performers are those taking advantage of lifecycle triggers to send timely, relevant emails,” added Mabley. “These marketers are capturing preferences — both explicit through preference centers and opt-in pages and implicit, such as Web activity, response and engagement activity.”

The quarterly analysis was compiled from 6.5 billion emails sent by Epsilon in April, May and June 2009, across multiple industries and approximately 200 clients.

Overall, open rates increased 18.2% year-over-year, according to the Epsilon second-quarter analysis. At 5.9%, click rates remained stable year-over-year.

According to recent Epsilon data, the vast majority of North American consumers — 87%, along with 74% of Europeans — still use email as their primary online communications tool.

Social networks, despite their popularity, have yet to emerge as primary communications tools. For North Americans, a mere 4% listed social networks as their primary communication tool.

Over time, consumers who receive a retailer’s permission-based email become more likely to do business with — and develop a more favorable opinion of — that company, Epsilon recently found.

A full 56% of recipients of permission-based email from retail companies said they were more likely to make purchases from the sending retailers. Meanwhile, 52% said they had a more favorable opinion of the retail companies that send them email because of the communications they receive.

Leave a Reply