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E-Mail: Open Rates Are Down, But Effective!

Lionseye insights from AC Lion just posted that “fewer consumers worldwide are opening marketing e-mails, according to a November 2008 study by MailerMailer.” (eMarketer) MailerMailer is an affordable ESP for smaller list management needs if you’re interested. Based on research, they found that in the first half of 2008, the average marketing e-mail open rate fell to 13.20% and Click rates fell to 2.73%. Some industries had higher open rates for their marketing e-mail (ie: finance, religious/spiritual, gov and telecom).
Also, another factor that could contribute to the drop in Open Rates and Click Through Rates (CTR) is the Subject Header. For anyone new to e-mail marketing, eMarketer conducted earlier studies that showed, shorter subject lines performed better than longer ones:

  • Subject Lines < 35 Characters – Open Rates: 19.6% ; CTR: 3.1%
  • Subject Lines > 35 Characters – Open Rates: 14.8%; CTR: 1.9%

But don’t start thinking “e-mail is a waste of time”…that’s simply crazy talk! E-mail is 2nd to paid search when it came to driving high volume. (You should already know that!) What I didn’t know was that an average of 4 out of 10 SEM companies said “e-mail marketing yielded the best ROI of any tactic worldwide” (Survey results from January 2008 from Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization (SEMPO)
If you are looking to do e-mail marketing, I’ll be writing an article next week about “The Best Email Service Provider’s For Small Businesses”, with Q&A, Price Quotes and more.


Article By: Joshua ‘The Red’ Russak (