Email Unsubscribes Rise On iOS Devices Since Latest Release

iOS email unsubscribes have increased 75% since the release of Apple’s latest operating system, according to data released Monday from Yes Lifecycle Marketing.

Apple's release of iOS 10 in September included an “easy unsubscribe” feature that is the likely culprit for the rise in unsubscribes, per the report. The update gave Apple users greater control of their email inbox.

The unsubscribe feature, highlighted by a banner at the top of the email message, reads: "this message is from a mailing list." That same banner ad also pushes down the content into the email.

Yes Lifecycle Marketing analyzed unsubscribe rates from emails sent from its platform from August 28 to October 16 to determine whether the latest release of iOS 10 had any negative consequences for email marketers.

The results confirm that email marketers are struggling with the easier-to-use unsubscribe feature. Retail-specific email marketing campaigns have seen their unsubscribe rates double since September, according to Yes Lifecycle Marketing, while the financial services and entertainment industries has seen their unsubscribe rates triple since the release of iOS 10.

“The overall trend of increasing iOS unsubscribes is consistent across industries but the level of iOS 10 adoption and the size of the unsubscribe increase can significantly vary by industry,” states Kyle Hendrick, director of client services at Yesmail, in a blog post announcing the news. “All in all, unsubscribes increased as a result of the ‘easy unsubscribe’ functionality introduced in the release of iOS 10 but marketers shouldn’t freak out. There are long-term upsides that could benefit brands.”

An unengaged subscriber could cause damage to an email campaign by lowering open rates and overall ROI, but the high unsubscribe rates suggested by Yes Lifecycle Marketing’s report are troubling.

Providing a preference center for subscribers is the most effective way for marketers to stop unsubscribes, according to a recent study of almost 1,800 consumers by Mapp Digital. Forty percent of respondents said they may be dissuaded from unsubscribing from an email if they were offered a way to receive fewer messages instead, but 35% of respondents asserted that nothing could convince them to stay subscribed to an email list once they made a decision to leave. 

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