Today, email deliverability is a challenging goal and a moving target all at the same time. Worse, traditional metrics such as email volume and open rates are going up, but inbox placement is in decline.
For proof, consider email performance related to Black Friday and Cyber Monday in 2016. Total email volume and open rates were both up – good news! – but unfortunately, inbox delivery rates were down. (For other email insights related to holiday shopping, please visit the eDataSource blog.)
For example, only 19% of Black Friday emails had an inbox percentage exceeding 90% (down from 44% in 2015). Similarly, only 18% of Cyber Monday emails had an inbox percentage exceeding this same 90% threshold (as opposed to 45% in the previous year).
This means that far fewer consumers are actually receiving your email marketing messages this year, which is compounded by the fact that that volumes were up about 55%. And no matter how fantastic your email may be, it won’t generate a response if it isn’t delivered!
Questions Every Email Marketer Should Ask About Deliverability
All of this leads to the question: What can today’s email marketers do to improve email deliverability?
First, don’t panic! You have to accept the fact that even the best email marketer’s experience a delivery failure or two every so often.
But clearly, we all want to improve, so to best assess how you can get better, we recommend asking yourself the following questions as you troubleshoot any email delivery problems.
- Have you tested your SPF and DKIM authentication records for your sending domain?
- Do you know what your complaint and unsubscribe rates are?
- Are you using a dedicated IP address with a clean blacklist-free reputation?
- Have you tested your email creative and content for valid code and spam filter triggers for the apps and email clients that your recipients use?
- Is your content relevant, interesting, and valuable to your recipients?
- Are you following best practices related to email list hygiene and limiting campaign audiences to engaged (opens, clicks, conversions) customers?
Uncovering the answers to the questions – and resolving related issues you might find along the way – will certainly help improve your delivery rates.
Complete Insight. Complete Control.
In addition, you can take advantage of powerful tools to gain complete visibility into potential issues and then take appropriate steps to resolve them.
For example, eDataSource’s Inbox Tracker solution lets you monitor any fluctuations that may occur in your inbox delivery rates in real time. More, you can see this information by specific email campaign or IP address, and all information is based on consumer panel data from more than two million actual inboxes. This view shows if your emails were delivered to the inbox or the junk folder – or neither! – so you can drill down, investigate and address any issues as your messages are mailing.
Inbox Tracker uses data from four of the largest ISPs (Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, and Outlook), virtual personas, and seed data from more than 100 global mailbox providers. As a result, this solution is able to generate highly accurate, immediate, and statistically significant results regarding the delivery of individual campaigns, volume-per-IP address over time (a critical metric), and much more.
Inbox Tracker delivers the following advantages:
- Real-time processing of extremely accurate – and actionable – results
- Automated blacklist alerts
- Insight into true inbox placement and read rates, broken down to the ISP level
- Advanced analytics that address recipients’ email clients, viewing environments, browser details, and more
- The ability to customize data sources, region exclusions and source indicators
- Engagement metrics to validate potential issues – before it’s too late
While email deliverability has never been an easy goal to accomplish, making sure your emails are delivered to the inbox is even more challenging today. Only complete and real-time inbox visibility can help overcome potential issues and significantly increase delivery rates.