Email Click Tracking: Know the Audience Engagement for your Emails
September 17th 2021
Sales Best Practices
Email Click Tracking
Though a traditional method, even today, over 3 million emails are sent every second. Emails are claimed to be the preferred method of communication by 86% of professionals. It is a convenient, cost-effective, and completely customizable method. Crafting email campaigns can enable you to reach your target audience sooner. You can connect to your target audience at a more personal level. While email campaigns are a preferred method, only 14% of emails received are considered necessary. How do you determine if your email is among them? Let's find out.

Table of contents:

  • What is Email Engagement?
  • Why does Email Engagement Matter?
  • What are the Metrics for Measuring Email Engagement?
  • What is Click Tracking?
  • How does Click Tracking Work?
  • Email Tracking in the Future

What is Email Engagement?

Email engagement is a combination of metrics used to track the interactions of your target audience. Email engagement can be estimated by monitoring metrics like open rate, click-through rate, unsubscribe rate, etc. Email tracking can help you make informed decisions for effective email campaigns. Email click tracking is an engagement metrics that measures how your prospects are interacting with your campaigns. It provides insights into the contacts' behavior that can help you personalize your other email campaigns.

Why does Email Engagement Matter?

Emails are an essential component of both sales and marketing strategies as a communication tool. They are action-oriented and measurable. They can contain call-to-action personalized for the target audience. You can measure them through metrics like email click tracking. It removes the guesswork and helps you understand where your emails stand and how you can improve.

  • Emails are estimated to provide $44 ROI. Streamline your return on investment by understanding how to keep your audience engaged.
  • Emails have enough competition from social media, push notifications, and more, but it remains the most popular ROI-driven channel.
  • Tracking email engagement helps in determining the success of your campaign.
  • Email click tracking and other engagement metrics can help you compare across channels.
  • Insights from email click tracking can help in prioritizing your time and efforts to drive maximum engagement and, in continuation, results.
  • Understanding which engagement and acquisition strategies have performed better can help you make informed decisions.

What are the Metrics for Measuring Email Engagement?

Emails are expected to deliver value through long-term relationships with your target audience. Developing a data-driven engagement-first strategy is essential to derive value from your email campaigns. Understanding what kind of content interests your target audience and personalizing campaigns can maximize returns through emails. But how do you determine the success of a campaign? Let's find out the different metrics that can help you measure email engagement.

  • Open Rate: Open rates can vary based on the size of your contact list, the type of email list, and many other factors. While the average open rate can change for your industry, generally 20-40% is considered optimal. The measurement of email opens indicates the performance of your subject lines. You can track the trend of open rate to test which subject lines are most compelling for your target audience.
  • Click Rate: Click rate or the click-through rate is the number of people who clicked at least one link within an email. It indicates how relevant and valuable your content is to your audience. It also signifies the relevance of the call to action. The click rate for an email campaign is calculated as follows:formula for click rate

    There can be two types of click rates,

    • TCTR: Total Click-through Rate

      It means the total number of clicks on all the links in an email received. It measures the popularity or the relevance of your message through the number of clicks it generates. The different points that may affect these metrics are as follows:

      • Email opens, and link clicks from multiple device
      • Multiple or repeated clicks from the same prospects
      • The firewall checks malware on the link opens
      • Clickers used to click on links

      So the total click-through rate may not be the ideal metric; however, you can track unique click-through rates

    • UCTR: Unique Click-through Rate
    • The unique click-through rate measures the number of unique clicks an email receives. Let's take an example to understand this better. Suppose you open a link in your phone's browser and then open the same link again on your laptop; TCTR will count the number of clicks to be 2. UCTR will consider it as a single click. Similarly, you open an email early in the morning, click the call-to-action, and then repeat this in the evening. Unique click-through rate will register it as one-click while total click-through rate will register it as two.

      Both unique click-through rates and total click-through rates are important metrics. TCTR will provide you details about repeat engagement, retention, broken links, shares, and more. UCTR will offer you a clear picture of the effectiveness of an email campaign.

    • Click-to-open Rate
    • A click-to-open rate indicates the percentage of prospects who opened and clicked an email. It helps in determining the value of content sent in the email. It is calculated in the following way:formula for click to open rate
  • Unsubscribe Rate: Unsubscribe rate helps you determine the quality of your audience and whether your audience belongs to your persona. It also helps you understand if your audience's frequency of email campaigns is acceptable. Usually, unsubscribe rate under 2% is within industry standards.
  • Bounce Rate: Bounced emails are messages that were not delivered. It is the percentage of emails that were undelivered during a single campaign. There are two types of email bounces that you can track:

    • Soft Bounce: It can occur due to errors in the recipients', such as the inbox is full, the email size is too long, or other technical errors.
    • Hard Bounce: It is caused by invalid email addresses or incorrect contact details.
    • The formula to calculate bounce rate is as follows:

      formula for bounce rate

  • Spam Rate: Spam rate is the number of times your email was marked as spam by your recipients. It is also known as the compliant rate.

How does Click Tracking Work?

Email tracking provides a detailed insight into the performance of an email campaign. There are no standard techniques for email tracking because of other aspects such as cookies and web beacons. There is no 100% accuracy in tracking your email opens or read receipts. But there can be three ways you can track email to a large extent; they are as follows:

  1. Read Receipts
  2. Email tools and platforms such as Outlook and Gmail can provide read receipts to track whether your emails were received and opened. To get notified, the recipient must allow read receipts in their settings or authorize them.

    It is an invasive technique that works only when sent to and from the same email client. Therefore, it is not a very reliable tracking option. But if you receive an email receipt notification, you know the recipient has authorized it.

  3. Image Pixels
  4. Image pixels are tracking pixels inserted into your email content through a tracking server with a coded filename. The image is tracked from the server and marked as 'open' when your email is opened.

    Despite being the most reliable method of tracking opens, it is not 100% accurate. Email clients like Microsoft Outlook, Apple Mail, Gmail, and others may not always load images on email open. By adhering to the best email practices, you can avoid spam reports and send your emails as a trusted sender.

  5. Trackable Links
  6. Links within an email can have UTMs or other trackable parameters to ensure they were opened and clicked. Using tracking links in your email can redirect your recipients to a cloud-based or online resource. It is a reliable method to confirm email click rates.

    Trackable links allow you to understand when and what encouraged a recipient to click on a call-to-action. It is a reliable method to measure and compare the number of email clicks to determine engagement.

Email Tracking in the Future

Emails are here to stay and continue evolving. Every email strategy needs a goal to ensure that performance metrics like email click tracking come in handy. They help you understand if your prospects are interacting with your brand. The different metrics that determine email campaign performance let you know how well your audience engages with your brand and its content. With the ever-evolving technologies, the metrics for email engagement may continue to grow, but the basic ones will remain relevant.

Richa Sharma
Content Marketer
Richa Sharma
Content Marketer
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