Before you look at your campaign results you should have an understanding of what the metrics are. Once you know what each area is, you will be able to gauge how well your campaign has performed. You will also glean additional insight on your database.
The open rate of an account shows you how many contacts have opened your email campaign. The number you see here displays unique opens only. So if a contact opens the email three (3) different times, the system will simply count this as one (1) open. This is done so that you are given an accurate idea of the number of people who have opened your campaign.
Open rates are recorded using a tracking pixel within the email campaign. Tracking pixels are only downloaded when a contact clicks the “Download Images” link in their email client. Once this link is clicked the pixel is downloaded and the email is recorded as opened. Sometimes people do not opt to click the “Download Images” link when they open an email. In this instance there is no way to track that the email was opened. For this reason open rates are never going to be 100% accurate. It’s important to keep this in mind when looking at statistics as your campaign will have actually had more eyes on it, than recorded.
Soft bounces are what we call temporary bounces. They occur when the recipient's server sends us a message. There are several types of soft bounces, but the easiest to understand is when someone has their 'Out of Office' switched on. Obviously the recipient is going to receive and read the email. However, their email server sends a reply saying that they are not in. When a soft bounce occurs the platform does not opt these contacts out, it simply records this as a soft bounce.
There is nothing you need to worry about with soft bounces, the recipient will receive and read the email, and they will remain subscribed to the database.
Click through Rate
Click Throughs are the best way to measure the success of your email campaign, because they tell us how invested your readers are. A click through is when someone clicks a link (called a Call to Action) within your email. These are the best tool for measuring because it tells us that the contact didn't just skim your email, but read it, and was interested enough to respond.
Unlike open rates, click through rates are 100% accurate because each time a link is clicked it is recorded.
Hard Bounces / Auto Opt Out
A hard bounce is what you think of when you hear the term: bounced email. It is an email address that is typed incorrectly, bad or invalid. When the system receives notification of a hard bounce, it is automatically opted out. This is done so that you do not send to it again. Auto Opt Outs occur to ensure that your database is clean. In time auto opt outs will help you build a good sending reputation (which in turn ensures more emails bypass the junk folder).
When the platform determines that an email is undeliverable, it will block messages from being sent to it. Since we know that the email will bounce back, we don't send the message out to protect your send reputation and keep the bounce rate low (the lower the bounce rate, the better the overall deliverability of your campaign).
There are a number of reasons for an email to end up on the blocklist. The most common reasons are:
- Previous attempts to send messages to this address have all failed.
- The domain does not exist (generally likely to a typo eg: @gnail.com).
- The user has specifically requested to be blacklisted from the service.
Patron Opt Outs. This is the number that no one likes to go over, because people assume opt outs as a negative thing. When in reality they are not. Opt outs are natural and will always occur. People relocate, their lifestyles may change, financial circumstances, all of this is part of life. You don't want to be sending emails to people who aren't interested or who aren't customers. In fact sending to them continually will only damage your campaign results. So it is actually good that they are opting out. Please keep in mind that your opt out numbers should be consistent from send to send.