September 15, 2004, 12:00 AM

E-mail delivery rate inches up, but open and click-through rates drop

E-mail marketers are getting better at entering in-boxes, but lagging in getting consumers to open and click through their messages, DoubleClick reports. Deliverability for all industries was 89.5% for the second quarter, up from 88.5% a year ago.

 

E-mail marketers are getting slightly better at entering in-boxes, but they’re lagging in getting consumers to open and click through their messages, DoubleClick Inc. reports in its Q2 2004 Email Trend Report.

The overall deliverability rate measured by DoubleClick for all industries was 89.5% for the second quarter, up from 88.5% a year ago. DoubleClick shows slight improvements in e-mail delivery for most industries, measured as year-to-year declines in bounce rates. Q2 bounce rates declined to 7.8% from 8.7% for the retail-and-catalog industry; to 13.8% from 18.6% for consumer products; and to 7.8% from 10.4% for travel. But they rose slightly to 12.5% from 11.7% for consumer services.

Open rates, however, declined for all of those industry groups. Q2 open rates fell to 33.4% from 37% for retail-and-catalog; to 37% from 41% for consumer products; to 34.7% from 35.7% for consumer services; and to 37% from 44.5% for travel.

Q2 click-through rates declined to 6.3% from 6.7% for retail-and-catalog; to 7.6% from 10.7% for consumer products; and to 8.1% from 9.3% for travel. Click-through rates for consumer services stayed virtually the same, inching upward to 8.7% from 8.6%, even though consumer services experienced a decline in its delivery rate.

The study also notes that travel had the highest rate of unique user clicks in Q2, at 5.7%, followed by consumer services at 5.5% and consumer products at 5.4%.

Overall revenue per delivered e-mail in Q2 declined by a third, to 20 cents, down from an all-time high of 30 cents in Q2 of last year. The overall average number of orders per delivered e-mail declined to 0.22%, which was down 26.7% from Q2 of last year.

“Q2 trends show continued evolution in e-mail marketing,” DoubleClick says in the study. “List hygiene and address collection processes have improved bounce rates, while response rate trends suggest subscriber files are beginning to mature.”

It adds that, as e-mail files expand, newer customers represent a smaller proportion of total subscribers, potentially driving down response rates.

DoubleClick bases its trend report on billions of permission-based e-mails sent by hundreds of its DARTmail e-mail delivery customers.

 

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