What is the open rate and how to calculate it?

What is the open rate and how to calculate it?


The opening rate is a very important indicator in a company’s marketing strategy. It indicates the ratio between customers who receive solicitations from a brand through various digital channels (emails, notifications, SMS, instant messages) and those who consult them.

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It essentially makes it possible to determine the success of a campaign and to improve, if necessary, some parameters so that the recipients consult more the sendings of the sign. Many solutions on the market such as HubSpot offer to analyze the performance of marketing campaigns and automatically provide their opening rate.

Why calculate the open rate?

The open rate indicates the performance of a marketing campaign

The open rate is one of the essential KPIs to follow in inbound marketing. If the open rate of a marketing campaign remains very low, the latter is a failure. Customers did not take notice of the message that the brand wanted to share. In order to improve the impact of its communication, the company must then make some changes to its mailings and then compare the evolution of the opening rate. If it is better, then the changes made are beneficial. If the rate drops or stays constant, then new tests are needed that might work.

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The changes made may concern the personalization of the message, for example. By using variables such as the recipient’s first name, he can feel more concerned, which will encourage him to open the message. The use of emojis in the subject of the email has also proven its worth, as has the integration of an image to visually stimulate the customer.

It gives an indication of the quality of the database collected by the company

If the opening rate of all of a brand’s marketing campaigns is poor, you should certainly turn to the quality of its database. Customers must be opt-in, that is to say, they must have agreed in advance to be contacted by the company. If the mailing list was purchased from a third party, the rates will be bad, as prospects will either not qualify or view such solicitations as spam. In this case, a deletion of invalid or unqualified contacts is unavoidable.

If the database was obtained in a legal manner, then inactive clients should be reactivated. A dedicated campaign offering them a great promotion can improve the open rate. Another solution is to improve the loyalty program in order to offer more attractive content to customers who will no doubt consult these solicitations.

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A barometer of customer confidence

The opening rate can also be considered as an indicator of the trust customers have in the brand. Indeed, if they appreciate this brand, they are most often curious to discover what it has to offer them.

Similarly, Internet users click more easily on an email if they feel in an environment of trust.

Customers attached to a brand will consult the shipment out of curiosity. They need to be in an environment of trust to click. This is why it is essential to take care of the sending name that is displayed as the sender of the message. It is customary to use a first name to arouse the sympathy of the recipient, followed by the name of the company for the sake of transparency.

How to calculate the open rate?

The calculation to apply to obtain the opening rate of a marketing campaign

To obtain this famous opening rate, a simple calculation is to be applied. Simply divide the number of campaign messages opened by the total number of solicitations sent and multiply by one hundred.

This gives: (number of marketing send opens/number of solicitations sent) x 100.

Solutions make it possible to obtain this rate automatically

Some solutions like Hubspot make it possible to obtain this opening rate in an automated way. Typically, routers add a pixel to the top of the body of the sent message. Thus, the loading of the images present in the email ensures that it has been consulted. A simplified way to effectively monitor the performance of marketing campaigns.

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What is a good open rate?

The variables that define a good open rate

A good open rate is not the same for all companies. It varies according to various criteria:

  • The business sector.
  • The field of activity.
  • Of the target (B2B or B2C).
  • The type of message sent: transactional, promotional or informational.

In what range is a good open rate?

However, it is possible to give some general indications. A good open rate is usually between 15 and 25%. Here is an example of variation by sector: for real estate brands, it is 19.17% on average. In comparison, it is 27.74% for a leisure brand. It should also be noted that the average opening rate for all sectors combined is around 21.33%.

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