Marketing Email Year-Over-Year Benchmarks and Trends

The number of emails arriving in subscribers’ inboxes increased by 9% between 2Q13 and 2Q14, according to a recent report from Yesmail.

The overall email open rate declined 3% during the same period, most likely because of the added volume of messages. Yet the number of opens for each active subscriber actually increased 6% year-over-year (YOY).

Put another way: Consumers are now getting more marketing emails than a year ago, and a higher percentage of those emails remain unopened; however, the subscribers who are engaged are opening more emails than ever.

Nevertheless, open rates only tell part of the story, Yesmail found. Unique clicks decreased 14% over in the same period, indicating that although active subscribers may still be consistently opening, they are clicking through less frequently.


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Below, additional key findings from the report, which was based on email data collected by Yesmail between 2Q13 and 2Q14.

Mobile

  • Email opens on mobile devices accounted for 64.5% of opens in 2Q14, compared with just 35.5% on desktops.
  • However, mobile devices accounted for just 35% of all email clicks—a 9% increase YOY but still much less than the overall share of opens.
  • Similarly, though the average mobile click-to-open rate increased YOY, reaching 9.3% in 2Q14, it still significantly lags the desktop average click-to-open rate of 22.6%.

Conversion and Order Value

  • Mobile transactions accounted for 22% of all purchases driven by email in 2Q14, a 40% YOY increase.
  • However, though the the number of mobile orders jumped year-over-year, the revenue associated with these purchases only increased by 10%.
  • One explanation for this discrepancy could be the decline of average order value (AOV) on mobile. In 3Q13, the mobile AOV was only $9 lower than desktop—$79 vs. $88. In 2Q14, the AOV for mobile was $28 lower than that of desktop, $55 vs. $83.

Triggered Messages

  • Triggered messages—such as abandoned shopping cart and welcome emails—had a 2.5x higher average open rate in 2Q14 compared with general campaigns (38.9% vs. 15.1%).
  • Triggered messages also had a 2x higher average unique click rate compared with general campaigns (3.4% vs. 1.7%).

About the research: The report was based on email data collected by Yesmail between 2Q13 and 2Q14.

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