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SendGrid, Inc. (NYSE: SEND), a leading digital communication platform that drives engagement and growth, today announced the findings of its third annual Global Email Benchmark Report. SendGrid analyzed aggregated anonymized statistical data from more than 50 billion emails across 17 industries, covering over 100,000 different senders reaching nearly two billion different recipient addresses. The findings provide email related metrics to help brands evaluate the effectiveness of their email marketing programs.

The 2018 Global Email Benchmark Report features new delivery statistics, engagement metrics, and more insight into how email is being engaged with globally. The report equips senders of all types with benchmarks to determine how effective their email program is, identify areas of improvement and set goals for future campaigns.

The report also combines engagement statistics across all senders, establishing the benchmarks for the average monthly send rate of seven emails, with an aggregate open rate of 18 percent, aggregate click rate of two percent and click to open rate of 11.1 percent. In addition, the report provides insight into the top three inboxes, as well as the top three devices used to engage with email.

The 2018 Global Email Benchmark Report Highlights Include:

  • Across all industries, emails are opened on mobile devices 55.6 percent of the time, which means making messages responsive and designed for mobile devices is critical for all senders.
  • The top three most commonly used inbox providers are Gmail, Yahoo, and Hotmail, which means it is essential to authenticate email correctly so that messages aren’t blocked.
  • Across all industries, the median delivery rates are very high, and median spam rates are all zero. It is a great sign that senders are sending email to good email addresses, getting bounced rarely, and recipients are seldom marking messages as spam.
  • Nearly all industries skew just slightly toward female recipients, except for computers and electronics, energy and utilities, and financial services.
  • As a sender in any of the 17 industries, if you’re seeing delivery rates or spam rates significantly lower than the industry average, use this ROI Calculator to determine how much impact those rates are having on your revenue.

“Engagement is a key indicator of the health of your email program, not to mention a means to ensure the longevity and stickiness of brands in the marketplace. Increasing engagement through personalization is especially crucial when you consider the amount of ‘noise’ in the inbox,” says Len Shneyder, vice president of industry relations at SendGrid. “SendGrid’s 2018 Global Email Benchmark Report will help senders cut through the clutter by comparing email program engagement metrics to the average metrics of their industry and use these benchmarks to set tangible goals and benchmarks against which to measure improvement and progress.”

Some Key Recommendations to Empower Email Senders Include:

  • Mobile Optimization: Messages are opened on mobile devices more than half the time. This means it’s more obvious than ever if your messages aren’t responsive and don’t render correctly, creating a poor user experience. Responsive design is certainly the ideal, but if it can’t be incorporated into your messages, we recommend at least approaching design from a “mobile first” mentality.
  • Top of Funnel: Top of funnel methodologies are often overlooked when it comes to email marketing, and they shouldn’t be. Being diligent about the quality of incoming data will both create a better experience for the recipients as well as help avoid headaches for senders down the line, like nebulous spam traps and blacklists.
  • A/B Testing: Always ensure that you implement A/B testing before making changes to your email program. By testing, you can make sure what you’re doing is making an improvement when compared to the control.
  • Monthly Send Rate, Opens, and Clicks: Your engagement metrics can be thought of as a scale. As you increase the number of messages you send each month, it’s likely that your open rates and click rates will go down. The goal is to find the right number of messages to send each month while maintaining as high a click-to-open rate as possible.
  • Send Frequency: As you can see with the software and Internet industry, they had the lowest number of messages sent each month, but they also have the highest median open rate. Rather than sending a bunch of emails that don’t get opened, send fewer, more targeted emails that are more likely to be engaged with.
  • Increase or Decrease Your Frequency: If you’re sending fewer times each month than the average, there could be an opportunity to message customers more often. Conversely, if you’re sending more than the average, you may want to dial it back a bit to increase engagement.
  • Global Optimization: Email is one of the best, most commonly used communication tools in the world. If you’re sending email to recipients in other countries, make sure you’re following any and all applicable laws. Whether it’s CAN-SPAM or GDPR, make sure you’re email program is set up for success.
  • Other Inbox Providers: Gmail, Yahoo, and Hotmail may be the most commonly used inbox providers, but there are many others out there that you may want to consider., Live, and GMX may not be common inbox providers in the United States, but they’re much more common in Russia, Germany, and Canada. If you’re sending email to other countries, make sure those messages are optimized for those inboxes.

This year, SendGrid updated its methodology for its 2018 Global Email Benchmark Report and made changes to how it defines industries and the senders within them based on North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC), and internal methodology. As a result, some industries have changed from previous years.

The full SendGrid 2018 Global Email Benchmark Report is available for download here.

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