What is a good email open rate? A painting by numbers guide for B2B brands

Let’s set the bar before we go any further. According to Mailchimp – the well-known and globally leading marketing automation platform – the average email open rate was 21.33%.

Is that a good email open rate? Persuading over one-fifth of subscribers to open your message is very good indeed; but we’re talking averages here.

Some businesses will fall shy of this figure and others will exceed it. So, the important question to ask is: what is a good email open rate for my company?

Once you’ve established this baseline figure you can review previous campaigns to identify strengths and weaknesses from which will evolve a strategy.

Why is a good email open rate important?

If a customer opens your email it connotes a number of things including, but not limited to:

  • Curiosity – you’ve piqued their interest enough to initiate that all important click
  • Credibility – your prospect trusts you enough to open the message and learn more
  • Relevance – the messaging resonated, driving the reader to take action

How can you improve your email open rates?

As we’ve identified ‘what is a good email open rate?’ is a subjective question. But, at the very least, it should align with the average figure published by Mailchimp. Anything below this threshold means there’s a problem with your targeting, messaging, or perhaps both.

Here’s why your unsubscribe rates are probably higher than your email open rates…

#1 Death by email

Keeping your brand visible is important. But if you’re running several campaigns a week customers will feel hounded. It could also make you appear desperate. Tone down the frequency of your messaging and your opening rates will surely increase.

#2 Irrelevant messaging

If you’re targeting the right people with the wrong subject lines your campaigns will flat. So make sure your targeting is on track and triple-check your messaging to ensure it’ll make sense to your audience.

Open-ended demographic

Casting the net wide can work if you’re selling a product or service applicable to anyone. Manufacturers that sell deodorants. Car dealerships. Or charities seeking donations. All are examples of businesses and organisations that can tap into a broad range of the population without too much attrition.

But a good email open rate is, in most cases, the direct result of targeted messaging (as mentioned earlier) that awakens interest, appears to solve a problem, and is relevant to the prospective customer’s aims.

What is a good Click Through Rate (CTR) for emails?

So far we’ve focussed on the question ‘what is a good email open rate?’ But this is just one step in a process designed to turn a lead into a bona fide sale.

In their report Mailchimp also discovered the average click through rate across all sectors was 2.62% This means 12.88% of people who open emails click through.

This might not sound like a lot. But it equates to a click through rate of 129 people per 1,000 emails you send. Where else can you generate numbers like that?

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Are open rates more important than click through rates?

Neither is more important. They are both key steps in the email marketing process. A great subject line is more likely to elevate your open rates; but if the content lacks bite and authenticity – or the page layout and CTAs are confusing – the customer will drop out of the buying journey. 

Want better than good email open rates? Then let’s talk

Connect with one of our email marketing experts to discuss your plans – and let’s collaborate together.

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