Have you ever been lying in bed at night, staring at the ceiling wondering to yourself… ”hmmmm…I wonder what else I could be measuring in my email campaigns???”

If this is you, then you, like me, are an email marketer. THIS is what keeps me up at night: What can I measure to make it better?

Email analytics are critical for any marketer who wants to run successful email campaigns. They provide insights into how recipients interact with your emails and measure the effectiveness of your campaigns. Here is a list of some of the essential email analytics that we marketers should be familiar with, what each measures, and why it’s important. If I have left any out, please add them to the comments. We could all do with a complete list!

Open Rate

  • Measures: The percentage of recipients who opened an email.
  • Importance: It indicates the initial level of engagement and the effectiveness of your subject line.

Click-Through Rate (CTR)

  • Measures: The percentage of email recipients who clicked on one or more links contained in an email.
  • Importance: CTR measures the level of engagement and interest in the content or offers within the email.

Conversion Rate

  • Measures: The percentage of email recipients who clicked on a link within an email and completed a desired action, such as purchasing a product or filling out a form.
  • Importance: It directly ties email marketing efforts to business outcomes and ROI.

Bounce Rate

  • Measures: The percentage of emails that could not be delivered to the recipient’s inbox.
  • Importance: A high bounce rate could indicate problems with your email list quality or deliverability issues.

Unsubscribe Rate

  • Measures: The percentage of email recipients who unsubscribed after opening an email.
  • Importance: It helps to gauge the long-term interest of your audience in your content and can signal the need for content adjustments.

List Growth Rate

  • Measures: The rate at which your email list is growing.
  • Importance: This metric shows the vitality of your email marketing efforts and helps to forecast future engagement and conversion potential.

Overall ROI

  • Measures: The overall return on investment from your email campaigns.
  • Importance: It tells you whether your email marketing efforts are profitable.

Spam Complaint Rate

  • Measures: The number of recipients who marked your email as spam.
  • Importance: High rates may affect your sender reputation and email deliverability.

Delivery Rate

  • Measures: The percentage of emails that were actually delivered to recipients’ inboxes.
  • Importance: This helps to ensure that your email list is clean and that your emails are not being blocked.

Engagement Over Time

  • Measures: The engagement of recipients with an email over a period of time.
  • Importance: Understanding when your audience engages with your emails can help you optimize send times.

Device Open Rate

  • Measures: The percentage of emails opened on different devices, such as mobile or desktop.
  • Importance: This information can guide design and layout decisions to optimize for the most used devices.

Click To Open Rate (CTOR)

  • Measures: The percentage of recipients who clicked on a link, button, or image within an email after opening it.
  • Importance: Analyzing CTOR offers us
  • Engagement Insight: It provides insight into how engaging or compelling the content of the email is for the audience who opened it.
  • Effectiveness of Content: CTOR helps in understanding which parts of the email content (like specific links, calls-to-action, or images) are more effective in driving user interaction.
  • Target Audience Understanding: A high or low CTOR can signal whether the content is relevant and appealing to the target audience.

Beyond the standard email analytics metrics

There are several lesser-known or more advanced metrics that can offer deeper insights into email campaign performance and subscriber behavior. Here are some of the more obscure email analytics:

Email Read Rate

  • Measures: How long a recipient spends reading an email.
  • Importance: This metric helps determine the actual engagement level with the content. Longer read times can indicate more engaging or compelling content.

Email Forwarding Rate

  • Measures: The number of times an email is forwarded to someone else by the original recipient.
  • Importance: It’s a good indicator of content relevance and can help identify brand advocates.

Print Rate

  • Measures: How often an email is printed out by the recipient.
  • Importance: A high print rate can indicate that the offer or information provided is considered valuable enough to be kept in physical form.

Heatmap of Clicks

  • Measures: Visual representation of where recipients are clicking within an email.
  • Importance: Helps in understanding which parts of the email are attracting the most attention and interaction, useful for design and layout optimization.

List Churn Rate

  • Measures: The rate at which you lose subscribers due to unsubscribes, complaints, and hard bounces.
  • Importance: Helps to understand the overall health of your email list and the long-term sustainability of your email marketing efforts.

Subscriber Lifetime Value (SLV)

  • Measures: The total revenue a business can expect from a single email subscriber over the course of their subscription.
  • Importance: SLV helps to assess the long-term value of email marketing efforts and guides strategic decisions regarding customer retention and acquisition costs.

Email Sharing/Forwarding Rate

  • Measures: The percentage of recipients who clicked on a “share this” button or forwarded the email to someone else.
  • Importance: This metric can be indicative of how engaging and shareable your content is, and it can help in identifying potential brand advocates.

Social Media Shares

  • Measures: The number of times an email’s content is shared on social media.
  • Importance: Sharing on social media extends the reach of your email content beyond your current mailing list and can help attract new subscribers.

Web Traffic Generated

  • Measures: The amount of traffic driven to your website from links in an email.
  • Importance: By tracking this, you can evaluate the effectiveness of email campaigns in contributing to your overall web traffic and engagement on your site.

Email Client Usage

  • Measures: The types of email clients (like Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo, etc.) used to open the email.
  • Importance: Knowing which clients are most popular among your subscribers can help ensure that emails are optimized for those platforms.

Silent Unsubscribers

  • Measures: Subscribers who never open emails but haven’t officially unsubscribed.
  • Importance: These users can skew engagement metrics and targeting strategies; identifying them can help clean up your list for more accurate analytics.


  • Measures: The location from which your emails are being opened.
  • Importance: Geo-tracking can inform location-based segmentation and targeting, allowing for more localized and relevant content.

Dark Social Traffic

  • Measures: The non-measurable share and traffic on your content through channels that analytics tools cannot track directly, such as private messages and emails.
  • Importance: Understanding this can provide insight into the more private and potentially significant ways that information is being shared among interested parties.

And finally…

Send Time Optimization (STO)

  • Measures: A process for determining the most effective time to send emails to recipients to maximize engagement, such as open rates and click-through rates. STO does not measure a specific metric itself; rather, it’s a strategy or technique used to enhance the performance of email campaigns.
  • Importance: Using STO in campaigns allows for:
  • Increased Open Rates: By optimizing the send time, emails are more likely to be opened. Different audiences may have different times when they are most likely to check their emails. STO helps in identifying these peak times.
  • Improved Engagement: Sending emails at a time when recipients are most active increases the likelihood of engagement, including clicks and conversions. This can lead to more effective email marketing campaigns.
  • Audience Insights: STO can provide valuable insights into the behavior patterns of the email list. Understanding when different segments of an audience are most likely to engage with emails can inform not just timing strategies but also content and targeting approaches.
  • Avoiding Email Fatigue: By optimizing send times, companies can avoid sending emails at times when recipients are less likely to engage, which can reduce the risk of email fatigue and improve the overall health of the email list.
  • Enhancing Personalization: STO is a form of personalization. It ensures that emails reach recipients at a time that is most convenient for them, which can improve the recipient’s perception of the brand.
  • Better Conversion Rates: Ultimately, the goal of most email campaigns is to drive action, whether it’s making a purchase, signing up for a service, or another desired outcome. STO can lead to higher conversion rates by ensuring that emails are read and acted upon.

These obscure metrics can provide nuanced insights into subscriber engagement and behavior. They are particularly important for fine-tuning the details of an email campaign and understanding the deeper effects of your email marketing efforts.

Each of these analytics provides valuable insights into different aspects of email marketing performance. By monitoring these metrics, marketers can make data-driven decisions to refine their email strategies, improve engagement, and drive conversions.

Is this list complete? Follow us on social and let us know.

Latest Articles

Maintaining a Healthy Sender Reputation for Email Marketers

Article Mar 25 2024 3 min read

Improving Email Open Rates: A Comprehensive Guide for Email Marketers

Article Mar 18 2024 8 min read

How to Avoid Spam Filters

Article Mar 11 2024 3 min read

The Basics of Email Deliverability: A Guide for Marketers Podcast

Article Mar 06 2024 1 min read

The Basics of Email Deliverability: A Guide for Marketers

Article Mar 04 2024 6 min read


Sign Up Now For Your 30-Day Free Trial!

Get unlimited access to SmarterSends for 30 days for a single user.

Sign Up Now!

SmarterSends, LLC

Roswell Rd, Atlanta GA USA

Copyright 2024 © | SmarterSends, LLC | All Rights Reserved

Terms & Conditions | Privacy Policy