March 10, 2011, 4:29 PM

E-mail conversions jump 16% during the holidays

The conversion rate for e-mail increased to 2.9% in Q4.

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The average conversion rate for e-mail campaigns jumped to 2.9% during the fourth quarter of 2010, up 11.3% percent from Q3 2010 and 16.1% compared with Q4 2009, according to research that marketing services firm Epsilon and the Email Experience Council released today.

The Email Trends and Benchmarks quarterly report analyzed 7.4 billion e-mails sent in the fourth quarter on behalf of 150 Epsilon clients across multiple industries. E-mail open rates held steady from a year earlier at 22.1%, while there was an 18.5% year-over-year increase in average volume of e-mail sent per client. Among consumers who made a purchase, median order sizes increased 19.8% compared with the third quarter of 2010.

“Double-digit increases in e-mail volume, conversion rates, median order size and revenue per e-mail confirm what the DMA has heard elsewhere,” says Yoram Wurmser, director of marketing and media insights for the Direct Marketing Association, a trade group. “Companies in the 2010 holiday season invested more in e-mail marketing and saw better results after two difficult years.”

General and specialty retailers’ open rates increased more than 20%, while apparel retailers’ rates decreased 13%, according to the report. Specialty retailers’ click-through rates grew 4.4% compared with Q4 2009, one of the few industries measured that experienced an increase. 

Kevin Mabley, senior vice president of strategic and analytic consulting at Epsilon, says marketers can boost sales by carefully analyzing consumer data. “We recommend that e-mail marketers track behaviors and analyze campaigns in order to continue to improve performance and create deeper connections with consumers.”





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