By Hannah Spicer, Hannah Spicer Consulting
Email marketing is often lauded, rightly so, as the highest converting and highest ROI channel for retail businesses. It’s a ‘bottom of funnel’ channel which talks directly to a warm audience: people who have come across your brand and shared their data with you, which is something few people take lightly any more.
However, to make email marketing work for your business, you need to know what ‘good’ looks like and how to get there.
So let’s get started.
Bounce rate The first thing your email has to do is get itself delivered. Emails that don’t get delivered are those that bounce and your bounce rate measures this.
Bounce rate = the number of bounced addresses divided by the total number of recipients.
There are two types of bounces that are included in your bounce rate, hard and soft, and your email tool will know how to deal with each kind of bounce.
Why do bounce rates matter?
If your account has a high number of bounces, this can have a negative impact on your deliverability and sender reputation. As your reputation diminishes, inbox providers including Gmail and Outlook may begin sending your emails to spam rather than to a recipient’s inbox.
What should my bounce rate be? Your bounce rate should be less than 1%. If it’s above 2%, you need to focus on reducing it by regularly cleaning your list and following list acquisition best practices.
Open rate The next step for your email is to get opened. Here is where the time of sending, both time of day and day of the week, along with subject lines, play a big part in your success.
Open rate = the number of opened emails divided by delivered emails. What should my open rate be? This can vary between 30-40% depending on your industry, so it’s best to benchmark against your competitors from within your email tool - Klaviyo is great for this - as well as your own historical performance. Remember that open rates are less accurate since the iOS 15 update as typically they are inflated.
Click rate This is the most important metric which determines how much traffic you are actually getting to your site. Click rate = the percentage of people who, having received your message, clicked a link in it. Note this is different from click from open/click through rate, which is the percentage of people who, having opened your message, clicked a link in it.
This is a measure of how effective the content of your email was: the copy, the images, the calls to action, the products, the design and more.
What should my click rate be? Again, this varies by industry, however, it generally sits between 1-2% for newsletters and campaigns. Open and click rates are considerably higher on automated emails like welcome and abandoned cart emails, which is why it’s so key to use both types of email sends in your digital marketing.
To optimise your email marketing, ensure that you are:
Tracking these metrics on a regular basis
Following best practice guidelines for email marketing
Continually optimising via A/B split testing. Everything in email marketing is trackable and testable
Email marketing is an incredibly powerful tool to have in your mix, so don’t shy away from it. Get set up on a great tool, build your database and start sending regular emails. You’ll soon see results.
Hannah Spicer is an email marketing consultant who works with luxury and premium fashion and beauty brands to optimise their email marketing and CRM.