More subscribers are signing up for email marketing, according to a report released Tuesday by Yes Lifecycle Marketing -- but marketers are failing to keep their new subscribers engaged.
New email subscribers have grown 8% year-over-year and 30% over the past three years, according to Yes Lifecycle Marketing’s Q1 2017 benchmark report. New subscribers on average made up 6% of a marketer's subscriber base in Q1 2017, illustrating the continued importance of email as a digital marketing channel.
Open rates have also grown 4% quarter-over-quarter and 9% year-over-year, according to the report, reaching a four-year high of over 16%.
Although subscription numbers and open rates are increasing, the average click-to-open (CTO) rate has substantially declined over the past two years, according to Yes Lifecycle Marketing. The average CTO rate has decreased 13% year-over-year and 22% over the past two years, meaning that marketers are failing to engage with subscribers after initial sign-ups and opens.
"Our findings show that contrary to what some may believe, consumers actually want to receive marketing emails," states Michael Fisher, president of Yes Lifecycle Marketing. "At the same time, however, the decline in click rates shows that marketers' content is not meeting subscribers' expectations. To maintain an engaged subscriber base, marketers need to offer valuable, relevant, and personalized information at every stage of their customers' life cycles.
Yes Lifecycle Marketing highlights triggered emails as a tactic to increase customer engagement. Triggered emails made up less than 7% of total emails sent in the first quarter of the year, but they generated a substantial increase in engagement and revenue.
When compared to business-as-usual emails, triggered emails doubled open rates, tripled click-to-opens, and generated almost five times the click rate. In addition, the average order value for triggered retail messages increased 9% from $56.34 to $61.54 when compared to non-triggered emails.
Another easy engagement tactic is segmentation, an email marketing strategy that boosts email return on investment, according to a recent email analysis by Klaviyo. When compared to mass emails sent to an entire email list, segmented email campaigns generated increased open rates, click-through rates, and revenue per recipient.