The Falsehood of open rates

Why should you ignore your email delivery service reporting system for open rates?

Because they are notoriously unreliable.

if they were valid then I would agree, they ‘might’ have some value.

But unfortunately many of your customers email reader clients block images supposedly for the user’s privacy, and tracking images is the only way the bulk email senders have to measure opens.

When you enable opens tracking on your delivery platform the software will make an invisible addition to each email it sends in the form of a single pixel image which also happens to be transparent.

This means that no-one would ever see it, but it must be loaded by your customer’s email software from the email delivery service’s server and that’s how they count the opens.

Sadly, if the email client software is set to block remote images by default, then your email delivery provider won’t be able to record that open.

You therefore can have no real idea what the open rate is.

All is not lost however.

Clicks, however are a different matter, when you place a link in your email, the email delivery platform will replace your link with one of it’s own and then re-direct the user to your website after the click has been registered on their server.

Yes, you can rely on clicks, but these are pretty useless unless you know the opens which you don’t and won’t know.

All you can track are clicks and more significantly, sales.

All you need to know if your email did a good job or not is to look at the sales it generated.

And that’s where you should focus your efforts, after all it’s all about the sales at the end of the day, so why not just measure that?

If your email content is rubbish = Sales Go down.
If your email content is great = Sales Go UP!

The moral is; don’t worry about things you cannot control and put your efforts where you can control things like great content.