Email Marketing Metrics that Matter

Email Marketing Metrics

We take email marketing pretty seriously. It’s part of almost every work plan we make for our clients, and we send weekly emails

Why? It’s one of the only ways that you still have complete control over the message you share with your audience, plus it offers you metrics that offer you an incredible amount of information about what your subscribers like and don’t like to see from you.

We have written about email marketing best practices before, so if you’re new to sending and need some answers about what you should send and how often, that’s the article for you.

Here we’re going to tell you what you’re looking for after you’ve sent your email and you can see all the numbers in the report your email service provider offers you.

What Email Marketing Metrics Should I Track?

For most email service providers (like Mail Chimp, Klaviyo, Active Campaign, etc), you’ll see a whole lot of information tracked about each email. There’s a reason for looking at every single thing they tracked, and when you’re ready to hire someone like us to dive really deep into your emails we will absolutely track every minute detail, but in the beginning it just isn’t necessary for good decision making.

With these ten important metrics to focus on with your email marketing, you can see what your subscribers like and make really great choices about your email marketing initiative.

Create a spreadsheet with these ten email marketing metrics for your brand. Upload information about every email that you send and watch the trends. You’re making decisions based on TRENDS not on individual emails—don’t make that common email mistake.

Your Top 10 Email Marketing Metric Definitions

Open Rate – This refers to what percentage of people opened the email that you sent. The calculation is # opened / # sent.

Click Rate – This refers to what percentage of people clicked the email that you sent. Typically the calculate is # clicked / # sent. Some email service providers use the calculation # clicked / # opened—be extra sure of this calculation for your emails.

Deliverability – Deliverability is how many people received the email compared to how many emails that you sent. This is a massive topic to understand and the big three (gmail, yahoo, hotmail) have 300+ things that the algorithm looks for.

Unsubscribe Rate – How many people unsubscribe from your regular emails? You should keep tabs on that and see if it increases with certain types of promotions.

Percent on Mobile – Literally refers to how many people are opening your email on a mobile device.

Revenue – This tracks how much money you made from each email

Subject Line – What did you write to them to get them to open? 

Segment Sent To – Who did you send this email to?

Testing – Most Email Service Providers allow you to do tests on things like subject lines, templates, and times. If you ran a test on an email you should write that.

Notes – Make a space for notes about each email.

What Are Good Goals for My Email Marketing Metrics?

Understanding email marketing metrics is one thing, but knowing how to set the right goals in email marketing is something completely different. If you don’t know what you should be shooting for, there’s no way to be sure how well you’re doing.

Here are some benchmark goals to focus on with your email initiative. 

Open Rate on Marketing Emails

Do you open every email in your inbox? Probably not, right? Neither does anyone else—so you can’t even begin to expect anywhere close to a 100% open rate, especially not on a regular weekly email.

22% and above is the open rate we like to see in a regular weekly email. If your open rate is closer to 30% means you should be sending a secondary email in the week. If you’re seeing below 10% with a deliverability around 100% it means there’s a good chance your emails are landing in spam.

What is a Good Click Rate?

Click rates 2% and above is what we like to see on your regular marketing emails. That percentage should be much more on the first emails of your welcome series and on sitewide sales that you created an initiative around. If it’s 5% or above take note and offer more of that thing.


This is one of the only things you should strive for 100%. All of our emails hover around 99.9% so if this sinks below 97%, and it’s not because of an influx of new emails that bounced, I send an email to our service provider and ask why.

If you’re looking at less than 95% delivered on all of your emails right now, figure out what’s going on.

Unsubscribe Rate of Your Email List

Ideally you have 0 unsubscribes, but that’s not exactly realistic because you want people to unsubscribe rather than hang around your list, not opening emails, and sucking away your money. If it hits 1% pay attention, if that’s happening consistently, you need to back off whatever you’re doing.

Percent on Mobile

Knowing how people are reading your emails is vital for your optimization. More and more people are checking their emails via mobile and you can expect to see 50-80% of people reading on mobile now, so make sure you’re optimizing for that platform as much as you are for your desktop view.

The Right Revenue from Email

Whoop – this is a big one, and it’s especially relevant for ecommerce because email is a huge money maker for most companies that are actively growing. You should strive for 25%-40% of your overall store revenue attributed to your email campaigns over time—depending on how you’re bringing in other sources of revenue.

Why You Should Track Email Subject Lines

Since you’re tracking open rates, you should track your subject lines. That way, at the end of the year or quarter, you can sort your data by open rate and check out the subjects that got the most opens. When you know what types of subjects people open, you can focus on making subjects in the same vein. Do the same thing with click rate and revenue and take note. 

Why You Know the Segment You Sent To

Keep track of who you’re sending emails to and only send to people that have engaged with your brand within the past three or four months. Keep track so that when you’re looking through your data you know which segments are the most active and which ones need a bit of extra nurturing.

Testing Your Emails

When your engaged list 1000 of more, you want to start testing to find the best way to make your emails more effective. Track what you’re testing and write down the winner in your notes. Make shorthand for things like A/B testing your templates, subject line test, tests on send time etc.

Add Notes to Your Email Marketing Metrics

If something strikes you about the data you’re looking at, write it in your notes section. Write down the winner of your tests and why you think an email did well or why it did below your expectations. If you don’t write it down when you’re doing your report, you will forget these notes as time goes on.

How Often to Fill Out Your Email Metrics Report

This is going to depend on how often you’re sending regular email campaigns. In most businesses, we suggest starting with weekly emails and weekly reports. If you’re sending less often, reporting once a month is great too—just as long as you’re looking at your email data and making decisions based on real factual information.

Do you report on your email now? Tell us how often in the comments!

Photo by Drew Beamer

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