Digital MarketingEmail MarketingE-mail Open Rates Peak on Friday

E-mail Open Rates Peak on Friday

E-mail campaigns buried consumers in the last quarter, though fewer Friday e-mails on allowed recipients to dig out marketers’ messages.

Open rates on marketing email and newsletters dipped in Q4 of 2005, according to the “Q4 2005 E-mail Statistics” report released by eROI.

From the Q3 to Q4 2005, open rates dropped 29 percent. Click rates fell 21 percent in the same period. The report speculates image blocking in Gmail, Outlook 2003 and other email clients chipped away at open rates. The sheer volume of email received over the holidays is another factor considered by the e-marketing agency.

The study finds Friday to be the best day to send email. The past two quarters show a tendency for higher open and click rates on Friday. Tuesday gets the second-highest open rate, with Thursday earning the second-highest clickthrough rates.

E-Mail Read and Click-Through Rates by Day of the Week, Q4 2005
Sent Open (%) Click (%)
Sunday 5,011,265 14.7 3.5
Monday 23,303,132 14.3 2.7
Tuesday 19,891,083 20.8 3.7
Wednesday 22,220,590 19.5 3.6
Thursday 21,565,988 20.0 3.7
Friday 16,313,851 21.0 4.0
Saturday 3,493,336 13.0 2.5
Source: eROI Inc., 2006

“The day descent has been a moving target every quarter,” said Ryan Buchanan, president and CEO of eROI. “What we are seeing in this trend is that business-to-consumer emails…performed better on Friday.”

E-mail volume may have some correlation to open and click rates. Excluding the weekends, fewer emails were sent on Friday than any other day of the week. The highest volume fell on Monday, with 23.3 million messages. On Friday, the firm’s clients sent an average 16.3 million.

E-Mail Statistics by Day of Week Q3 and Q4 2005
Click on graphic to view chart

Buchanan considers email volume when discussing open rates. “There wasn’t as much email on Fridays, compared to other days,” said Buchanan. “Basically, people were getting inundated.”

Targeted messages see better results. Micro-mailers, or lists with under 5,000 recipients, enjoy open rates of at least 40 percent; and click rates between seven percent and 11 percent. Buchanan recommends formulating more targeted lists for campaigns during the traditional planning month of January.

“As marketers plan out their 2006 email campaigns, we should think about segmenting our lists,” said Buchanan. “As marketers, we hopefully have more than just an email address on the customer list. If we have an idea of what our customers are interested in, we should use that information. E-mail campaigns are statistically proven to perform better if they’re getting more relevant resource information based on their interests and preferences.”

The Q4 E-mail Statistics report is the sixth quarterly report published by eROI. Data are taken from email campaigns sent by the company throughout the course of the quarter.

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