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The UK email marketing benchmark report 2013

When youre running a small business in Britain, it can be difficult to find meaningful comparisons to measure your marketing against. We know, we tried. Reports on big businesses and US firms just arent that useful for a UK SME. Thats why we created our UK email marketing benchmark. This report is the result of an analysis of over 1.1 billion email messages sent through the SignUp.to online marketing platform in the 12 months from 1st January - 31st December 2012. These email campaigns are all from small-medium sized UK organisations. All of these messages were permission-based and sent to opted-in lists (never to 3rd party or purchased lists). The 22 sectors listed here have been self-selected by the senders. For details of the calculation methods and additional graphs and tables, please see the appendix at the end of this document. These averages are a good place to start when benchmarking your performance, but remember that there are many factors which will influence your own results. When judging the success of your campaigns make sure you select relevant criteria for you and then look for incremental improvements by benchmarking against your own average results. For more on this, check out http://www.sign-up.to/resources/ Please feel free to pass this document around and post excerpts and links - all we ask it that you include a link and attribution to www.sign-up.to when you do. You can find the latest online version of this report, and interactive versions of the charts at www.sign-up.to/email-marketing-benchmarks/email-benchmark-2013/

Overall averages
Across all industries the average results for UK SME email marketing campaigns were: Open rate: 21.47% Click-through rate: 3.16% Unsubscription rate: 0.47% Click-to-open rate: 14.72% Unsubscribe-to-open rate: 2.29%
The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to Page 1/12

How do open and click-through rates compare across sectors?


Opens Clicks 27.97% 20.63% 20.58% 23.58% 17.63% 17.00% 17.51% 19.02% 21.72% 19.74% 20.67% 16.41% 17.01% 21.47% 21.74% 20.35% 22.08% 21.52% 22.29% 22.90% 25.57% 22.29%

B2B Sales B2B Services B2C Retail Charity Education/Training Events Fashion Finance Health/Beauty HR/Recruitment Industrial/Manufacturing IT Legal Music New Media PR Property Publishing Restaurants Sales/Marketing Sport/Leisure Travel
0%

4.55% 2.19% 3.22% 3.22% 1.74% 1.52% 3.15% 2.02% 2.77% 2.52% 2.16% 1.69% 1.57% 2.20% 5.81% 2.33% 2.36% 4.26% 2.53% 3.03% 2.87% 3.98%

7.5%

15.0%

22.5%

30.0%

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Which sectors have the best campaign engagement?


Clicks to Opens

New Media Publishing Fashion Travel B2B Sales B2C Retail Charity Sales/Marketing HR/Recruitment Health/Beauty PR Restaurants Sport/Leisure Property Finance B2B Services Industrial/Manufacturing IT Music Education/Training Legal Events

26.75% 19.78% 18.00% 17.85% 16.28% 15.64% 13.66% 13.23% 12.78% 12.75% 11.46% 11.37% 11.22% 10.69% 10.62% 10.61% 10.44% 10.30% 10.26% 9.87% 9.24% 8.97% 0% 7.5% 15.0%
(Higher is better)

22.5%

30.0%

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Click-to-open rates give a deeper insight into campaign performance by looking at actions performed after a campaign has been opened. This puts the focus on the actual email content - its design and relevance to the recipients - and removes factors which influence open rate, like subject line and sender details.

When comparing click-to-open rates it's important to remember that different types of email campaigns will have different objectives - driving a click-through may not always be the goal of a campaign.

This year sees Business to Business Sales take the lead with a click-to-open rate of 27.97%. By comparison, in the Events category (the worst performer) many of the emails are flyers which contain all of the relevant content within the email itself rather than linking away, and so they result in a fraction of the number of clicks.

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Which sectors have the highest reader loyalty?


Unsubscriptions to Opens

IT HR/Recruitment Sales/Marketing Restaurants B2B Services Property Education/Training Finance B2B Sales B2C Retail PR Publishing Health/Beauty Events Legal Fashion Industrial/Manufacturing Travel New Media Charity Sport/Leisure Music

4.14% 3.40% 3.02% 2.87% 2.85% 2.84% 2.76% 2.70% 2.53% 2.46% 2.42% 2.31% 2.15% 2.10% 2.05% 1.96% 1.94% 1.82% 1.62% 1.56% 1.51% 1.24% 0% 1.25% 2.50%
(Lower is better)

3.75%

5.00%

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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To measure reader loyalty, we look at the ratio of unsubscriptions to opens - a good indicator of the relevance of a campaign to the audience. The unsubscription rate alone is a useful measure but doesnt take into account people who simply discard messages without ever opening them - which is the worst possible result for an email marketeer.

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Appendix - more charts and tables


In this appendix weve included charts breaking down these statistics further, as well as details of how we calculate the numbers and tables of the raw percentages, in case youre curious!

A little bit about Sign-Up.to


We develop software and provide services and support to thousands of businesses to help them communicate better with their customers using email marketing, SMS and social media. Weve been in business for 10 years, are still owned by the original founders, and have offices in the UK and Australia. To find out more about what we do visit us at www.sign-up.to drop us an email at solutions@signup.to or give us a call on 020 3355 2631 - wed love to hear from you.

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Which sector has the best open rate?


B2B Sales Sport/Leisure Charity Sales/Marketing Travel Restaurants Property New Media Health/Beauty Publishing Music Industrial/Manufacturing B2B Services B2C Retail PR HR/Recruitment Finance Education/Training Fashion Legal Events IT
27.97% 25.57% 23.58% 22.90% 22.29% 22.29% 22.08% 21.74% 21.72% 21.52% 21.47% 20.67% 20.63% 20.58% 20.35% 19.74% 19.02% 17.63% 17.51% 17.01% 17.00% 16.41% 0% 7.5% 15.0%
(Higher is better)
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22.5%

30.0%

Which sector has the best click-through rate?


New Media B2B Sales Publishing Travel B2C Retail Charity Fashion Sales/Marketing Sport/Leisure Health/Beauty Restaurants HR/Recruitment Property PR Music B2B Services Industrial/Manufacturing Finance Education/Training IT Legal Events
5.81% 4.55% 4.26% 3.98% 3.22% 3.22% 3.15% 3.03% 2.87% 2.77% 2.53% 2.52% 2.36% 2.33% 2.20% 2.19% 2.16% 2.02% 1.74% 1.69% 1.57% 1.52% 0% 1.50% 3.00%
(Higher is better)

4.50%

6.00%

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Which sectors get the most unsubscriptions?


B2B Sales Sales/Marketing IT HR/Recruitment Restaurants Property B2B Services B2C Retail Finance Publishing Education/Training PR Health/Beauty Travel Industrial/Manufacturing Sport/Leisure Charity Events Legal New Media Fashion Music
0.71% 0.69% 0.68% 0.67% 0.64% 0.63% 0.59% 0.51% 0.51% 0.50% 0.49% 0.49% 0.47% 0.41% 0.40% 0.39% 0.37% 0.36% 0.35% 0.35% 0.34% 0.27% 0% 0.20% 0.40%
(Lower is better)

0.60%

0.80%

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Raw data
For the numerically inclined, here are the raw percentages in table format.
Click to Open 16.28% 10.61% 15.64% 13.66% 9.87% 8.97% 18.00% 10.62% 12.75% 12.78% 10.44% 10.30% 9.24% 10.26% 26.75% 11.46% 10.69% 19.78% 11.37% 13.23% 11.22% 17.85% Open to Unsub 2.53% 2.85% 2.46% 1.56% 2.76% 2.10% 1.96% 2.70% 2.15% 3.40% 1.94% 4.14% 2.05% 1.24% 1.62% 2.42% 2.84% 2.31% 2.87% 3.02% 1.51% 1.82%

Opens B2B Sales B2B Services B2C Retail Charity Education/Training Events Fashion Finance Health/Beauty HR/Recruitment Industrial/Manufacturing IT Legal Music New Media PR Property Publishing Restaurants Sales/Marketing Sport/Leisure Travel 27.97% 20.63% 20.58% 23.58% 17.63% 17.00% 17.51% 19.02% 21.72% 19.74% 20.67% 16.41% 17.01% 21.47% 21.74% 20.35% 22.08% 21.52% 22.29% 22.90% 25.57% 22.29%

Clicks 4.55% 2.19% 3.22% 3.22% 1.74% 1.52% 3.15% 2.02% 2.77% 2.52% 2.16% 1.69% 1.57% 2.20% 5.81% 2.33% 2.36% 4.26% 2.53% 3.03% 2.87% 3.98%

Unsubs 0.71% 0.59% 0.51% 0.37% 0.49% 0.36% 0.34% 0.51% 0.47% 0.67% 0.40% 0.68% 0.35% 0.27% 0.35% 0.49% 0.63% 0.50% 0.64% 0.69% 0.39% 0.41%

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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Dening terms
Lets define some of the terms we're using as several of these figures can be (and often are!) calculated in different ways. All figures we use are based on unique user actions - for example we only count the same recipient opening a campaign once, if they open that campaign again we don't count that as another open. Bounced: messages returned by the receiving mail server as undeliverable Delivered: messages accepted for delivery by the receiving mail server (total sent bounced) Open Rate: the proportion of delivered emails that were opened (measured by an image load or link click); i.e. number opened / delivered Clicks: the proportion of delivered emails that had a link clicked; i.e. unique clicks / delivered Unsubscribes: the proportion of delivered emails that result in an unsubscription; i.e. unsubscribes / delivered

For some of the reports we use different ratios, as these are a better way to compare some aspects of campaign performance - these are: Clicks to Opens: the proportion of opened emails that had a link clicked; i.e. unique clicks / opens Unsubscribes to Opens: the proportion of opened emails that result in an unsubscription; i.e. unsubscribes / opens

We use these 'x to Open' figures as ways to compare the performance of the actual campaign content because these look at what happens after the first objective of someone actually opening the campaign has been achieved.

The Sign-Up.to 2013 UK Email Marketing Benchmark Report Sign-Up Technologies Ltd. 2013 Visit us at www.sign-up.to

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