Email Open Rates Up; Still Cost Effective Communicator

According to a new report from Epsilon and the Direct Marketing Association’s Email Experience Council, the Q1 study shows a steady increase in open rates over both Q4 2011 and Q1 2011. It also shows a 23.9% decrease in average volume per client from the previous quarter, which is typical following the holiday email surge in late Q4, but shows a 24.1% increase from Q1 2011.
Highlights compiled from 7.1 billion emails in January, February and March 2012, across multiple industries and approximately 150 participating clients, show that:

  • Open rates increased 5.9% quarter over quarter, and increased 12.6% year over year, with an overall open rate of 26.2%
  • Click rates decreased 0.5 percentage points (8.3% overall) from last quarter to
  • 4.7%. Click rates also decreased over Q1 2011 (5.2%), but continue to remain established over the last two years
  • Average volume per client decreased by 23.9% over last quarter, but showed a 21.4% increase over Q1 2011 (21.4%)
  • In Q1 2012, triggered messages accounted for 2.3% of total email volume, a 14.5% lift over Q1 2011
  • Open rates for triggered messages were 75% higher than "business as usual" (BAU) in Q1 2012, dropping from 101% in Q1 2011
  • Triggered messages continued to perform well with 119% higher click rates than BAU

Judy Loschen, Vice President of Digital Analytics at Epsilon, notes that "... we noticed that open rates continue to increase as click rates decrease... partially a result of consumers'... tendency to open emails on their mobile device... then abandon without clicking because the content is not optimized... or the mobile experience is lacking.

Yoram Wurmser, DMA's Director of Marketing and Media Insights, says "... volume grew year to year by more than 20%... (but) triggered messaging is only part of the reason... marketers realize that email remains a cost-effective... means to communicate regularly with existing customers... “

For more information and industry-specific benchmarks, please visit Epsilon here to sign up for the complete PDF report.




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