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Email open rate: What is it and how to improve it?

8 min read
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In the era, where professionals communicate through emails, making sure that you know all the aspects related to email marketing is necessary.

The success of your email outreach campaigns (sequences) depends upon how clearly the call-to-action is placed and hence the conversion rates. 

The first action that you would want the recipient to take would be opening your email. 

Hence, it is necessary that the email sent is tracked, and the open rates are checked to ensure high engagement.

That is exactly what we have talked about in this blog. 

What are email open rates?

The percentage of people that open your emails out of the number of people you send is called email open rate. 

So, if you send an email to 20 people and it is opened by 16 people, your email open rate is “80%”.

This gives you an exact idea of how many people are interested in you. It saves your time as you don’t waste it after those who don’t care about your emails.

These rates are directly proportional to the subject line, and how relevant the subject matter is for the subscribers. 

Email open rate shows how well you can draw the attention of subscribers through your on-point subject line.

Also, Gmail doesn’t provide an in-built feature where you can track who opened your email but you can use Saleshandy to track the open rates of your email campaigns (sequences).

Why are email open rates important?

Apart from being an important metric for analyzing email deliverability and engagement statistics, email open rates help you to:

1. Avoid spam filter:

Spam filters check the engagement metrics of the IP and make a judgment whether the email ID is genuine or not. 

Low open rates give an idea to the sender that the content they are sending is not appealing and needs correction. 

Thus, to avoid the spam filter, open rates need to be maintained as per the industry standard.

2. Get a holistic view of the campaign (sequence):

Open rates when used with other email campaign (sequence) success metrics like click-through rate, bounce rate gives a holistic view of the effectiveness of the email campaign (sequence).

How to calculate email open rates?

As mentioned earlier, you cannot calculate accurate open rates with Gmail or Outlook manually. 

You can sign up with Saleshandy to track your email campaigns (sequences). 

signup with saleshandy for free

Also, you will get a real-time notification on who read your email along with other campaign (sequence) statistics.

Open rate statistics come in 2 variables

  1. Email sent: The number of recipients to whom the email was sent.
  2. Email opened: The number of people who have opened the email.

How to increase your email open rates?

There are various reasons why the recipients don’t open your emails, and it is important that you track the engagement of the recipients to ensure high conversion rates. 

There are a few things you need to do to make sure that recipients open your email on the first go.

9 tips to improve your email open rate

1. Clean your mailing list

2. Personalizing your emails

3. The subject line and preheader text

4. Follow A/B testing

5. Send follow ups (steps)

6. Provide valuable content

7. Best and the worst days to send emails

8. Schedule emails at an appropriate time

9. Consider double opt-in

10. Use Sender’s Rotation

1. Clean your mailing list

Sending emails to inactive recipients will lead to a low email open rate. Make sure your mailing list is cleansed every 4-6 months. 

Remove all the recipients that are inactive since the last few campaigns (sequences). This will ensure that you send emails to the right people.

2. Personalizing your emails

It has been seen that personalization of the emails increases the open rates by more than 20 percent. 

So, if you send “Hey Jim” instead of “Hey there” it will make a huge difference. 

If you have a big email list, send email campaigns (sequences) through Saleshandy and personalize thousands of emails.

3. The subject line and preheader text

Always write an effective subject line in your email to make the readers want to open the email. Personalize your subject line to increase the chances of opening the emails.

4. Follow A/B testing

A/B testing is the method of comparing the results of 2 different emails and taking out inferences on the same. 

You have to prepare two or more variants of an email naming them A, B, C and so on. Try it on different lists and compare results. Use the one that fetches maximum results.

5. Send follow ups (steps)

Sending follow ups (steps) is an important part of email marketing. 

Stats say “It takes up to 5 follow-ups (steps) for a sale to happen”. 

It will be a tiring job if you have to keep track of each follow up (step) that you send. Which is why you should use automated follow-ups (steps) and save your time taking manual follow-ups. 

Saleshandy provides an automated follow-ups (steps) feature with conditional follow-ups (steps) where you have an option to send follow-ups (steps) to those who have not read your email or not replied.

6. Provide valuable content

High-quality, relevant content is the frontline of a successful email marketing campaign (sequence). Make sure that you send emails that are rich in content to bring value and trust among the recipients and enjoy high open rates.

Beyond informative content, consider offering additional resources that enhance customer experience. This could include exclusive discounts, early access to new products, or even a link to your digital business card.

7. Best and the worst days to send emails

When looking at email statistics by day, it appears that weekdays perform the best, with the weekend having the lowest engagement figures. Here is a closer look at the best and the worst days to send emails:

  • Highest open rates are observed on Mondays
  • Highest click through rates are observed on Tuesdays
  • Wednesdays and Tuesdays are the days with the highest click-to-open rates

8. Schedule emails at an appropriate time

It is important that you reach the inbox of the recipient at the right time. You can use Saleshandy to schedule emails as per the recipient’s time zone to get better open rates

9. Consider double opt-in

When you consent twice to send an email to someone, it is called double opt-in. 

First when they provide their email address and second when they are sent a verification email. This will ensure that your email list includes all those who are legit interested in your email.

10. Sender’s Rotation

Sender’s Rotation involves sending email sequences from multiple email accounts, rather than relying solely on one.

By doing so, the volume of emails being sent is spread across multiple accounts, thereby reducing the likelihood of any one account being flagged or experiencing deliverability problems. This improves deliverability and chances of higher opens.

Email open rates average for various industries.

Open rates differ from industry to industry, and you always want to keep your open rate better or at least at par to the industry standards. 

Take the above-mentioned steps if your email open rates are lower than your industry standards.

INDUSTRYOPEN RATES                       
Arts and Entertainment20.5%
Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing, Hunting27.3%
Consumer Packaged Goods20%
Financial Services27.1%
Restaurant, Food & Beverage18.5%
Government & Politics19.4%
Healthcare Services23.7%
Logistics & Wholesale23.4%
Media, Entertainment, Publishing23.9%
Professional Services19.3%
Real Estate, Design, Construction21.7%
Travel, Hospitality, Leisure20.2%
Wellness & Fitness19.2%

Source –


Better email open rates suggest more people are interested in your company and that results in the growth of the business. 

Hence, open rates are a really important part of any email marketing campaign (sequence). 

Make sure you analyze your upcoming campaigns (sequences) and take necessary steps to improve your overall business. 

The first 200 emails of your campaigns (sequences) are on us. Take a free trial of any of our plans and enjoy the productivity.

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