4 Important Email Marketing Metrics to Know About

Team Pepper
Posted on 6/01/226 min read
4 Important Email Marketing Metrics to Know About

Table of Contents

  • 4 Key Email Marketing Metrics
  • Conclusion
  • FAQs

Understanding key performance indicators (KPI) is essential for effective email marketing. As a marketer, it is all the more crucial to learn about the important email marketing metrics

However, wrapping your head around the various marketing metrics might seem befuddling at first, and especially so if you’re a fresher. This blog is your mini-guide to knowing all the important email marketing KPIs in order to help you craft an effective email marketing strategy

4 Key Email Marketing Metrics

We’ve made the task easy for you. Listed here are the 4 primary KPIs of email marketing that truly matter. 


1. Open rate

Open rate is a metric that indicates how many subscribers on your list open your emails. The open rate is calculated by dividing the number of emails opened by the number of emails sent successfully; multiplied by 100. Here are some reasons why you should monitor open rates. 

  • The open rate is an indicator of real-time subscribers.  
  • It helps you determine how many subscribers on the sent list actually opened your message. 
  • It will help in fixing your email content strategy. 
  • It enables you to read audience email behaviour; and further help you come up with more efficient audience segmentation. 
  • Open rate is also a good performance indicator of email marketing elements, such as subject lines, timing, audience engagement, etc.            

How to optimize email marketing for better open rates

Your email subject line should be the focus area if you want to optimize your emails for a higher open rate. It is perhaps the most important causal factor that affects your email open rate. The first thing that a recipient notices in your email is the subject line. 

Take the subject line as the first impression. This is where you either lure the readers into opening the email or not. This is the making or breaking point of your email marketing strategy. And since you have just a few words with which to capture the audience’s interest, better craft  it well. Consider the following points. 

  • Does the subject line resonate with the email receiver? 
  • Let your subject line tell what the email is about and show why the email is worth reading. 
  • Follow the ideal length for email subject line: about 30-40 characters is the optimal length; shorter lines tend to get higher open rates
  • Add the recipient’s name in the subject line for a personal touch. Remember, personalization goes well beyond mere dropping of names. You should also personalize other aspects of the email as best as you can. 
  • Be aware of your audience behavior and history. Plan your message based on their preference and activities. Personalized emails translate into a much better performance, as compared to generic ones. 

2. Click-through rate

The click-through rate (CTR) shows the rate at which the links given in your emails were clicked. You can CTR by dividing the number of clicks by the number of delivered emails. 

Here’s why you should monitor your email CTR. 

  • CTR shows the actual engagement level of your audience with your content.
  • It is an indicator of your email campaign’s performance and quality. 

How to optimize email marketing for a higher CTR

Send your emails based on the relevance of your content. Stop sending out the email to all the people in your list. You need to segment your target audience for each email campaign. For that, you’ll need to segment your target audience. Here are a few things to ask. 

  • What is the core topic/subject of the email?
  • What’s the target demographic for this particular campaign?
  • Which buyer stage is the campaign for?

Here are a few advantages of segmenting your audience and accordingly disseminating your emails: 

  • The campaign won’t come off as pushy, because it won’t go to people who’ll perceive it as low-value.  
  • The spam rate will be low, as you’ll know which users will find the content useful. 

Also, remember to include a call-to-action (CTA) button in your email. A CTA button is a link that propels readers to take some action after having read your email. So the next step is to make sure that they notice it and understand what action you want them to take. An important tip for this email marketing metric is to egg them on, persuade them to take action: to hit the subscribe link, get those limited free ebooks, sign up for the newsletter, and so on.

3. Disengagement rate

Disengagement rate indicates the amount of audience who are losing touch with your content. Email disengagement can be in several forms: 

  • Unsubscribe rate: the number of  people who unsubscribe to your emails
  • Spam complaint rate: the number of times your emails are marked as spam or reported as abuse
  • Churn rate: the total number of unsubscribes, spams, or hard-bounced emails
  • Soft bounce: passive disengagement wherein readers don’t necessarily take a negative action, but they also stop noticing your emails.

It’s not possible to always create content that’s fit for each and every audience segment in your list. Still, your goal is to make the message resonate with the majority. Here’s why you should monitor disengagement rates. 

  • Disengagement rate tells you where you are with your relationship and engagement with the audience.
  • It helps you evaluate the performance of your email campaign. 
  • It helps you gauge your audience’s interests and how much they relate to your content. 
  • It determines various groups within your list and identifies those with the highest value. 

How to optimize email marketing for higher engagement

Here are a few ways in which you can optimize your campaign for higher engagement rates. 

  • Use correct email addresses, and avoid sending too many messages at a given time; ensure there’s no technical problem with the service provider. 
  • Recognize the audience’s interest; use segmentation; and ensure that the email doesn’t have spam-sensitive words. Use appropriate and catchy subject lines. 
  • Opting out of subscription isn’t uncommon. Still, you can get some learnings from it. Take it as a chance to throw out one last attempt to retain them. For example, during the opt-out process, present a short survey. This will help you realize just what you were doing wrong that led the subscriber to leave. 
  • Establish relations with former email list members. Your email list is precious. Re-engaging with previously disengaged members is an important email marketing strategy. 


Knowing the reason behind their unsubscription is of great value. It’ll help you know exactly how to reach out to them in the future. Take a look at this opt-out process at Medium, giving readers options to set the subscription to their liking: 


4. Conversion rate

This determines the real-time conversion that takes place via email links. It could be subscription, purchase, or anything else that you’d asked the audience to act on. It is the number of users who took action out of the total website visitors. Conversion rate is calculated dividing the number of actions by the number of emails successfully delivered, multiplied by 100. Here’s why you should monitor CR. 

  • Good CR can lower customer acquisition cost. 
  • It can improve revenue-per-visitor rate. 
  • Data based on CR reflect sales. 
  • It helps rectify email marketing techniques that don’t seem to work. 
  • It helps you determine how and where to improve email campaign strategies. 

How to optimize email marketing for higher CR

Here are a few ways in which you can optimize your email marketing strategy for higher CR. 

  • CR is affected by segmentation, subject lines, and personalization. So, it is crucial to optimize these elements. 
  • Your CTA link should lead to a good landing page: one that is easy to use, loads fast, and reinforces the CTA.
  • Maintain an ideal churn rate. 
  • Recheck your email list. 


The four primary KPIs of any email marketing strategy are open rate, click-through rate, disengagement rate, and conversion rate. The bottomline is to keep your email marketing elements highly optimized. And audience segmentation is more important than you think. It holds the key to better engagement, conversion, and retention. 


1. What are email marketing metrics?

Email marketing metrics or email marketing KPIs are important indicators that help marketers assess the performance of an email marketing campaign.

2. What are some of the most important email marketing KPIs?

Open rate, click-through rate, disengagement rate, and conversion rate are four of the key email marketing metrics. 

3. What is open rate in email marketing?

Open rate is a metric that indicates how many subscribers on your list open your emails. It indicates the number of real-time subscribers and helps enhance your strategy. 

4. How is disengagement rate helpful?

Disengagement rate tells you where you are with your audience as long as relationship-building is concerned. It can help you reassess your email marketing strategy to serve your audience better.