Why “Delivery Rate” Could Be Your Greatest Email Newsletter Metric

Think about getting emails delivered before you think about getting them opened

Many people would say that your open rate is your single most important metric. Because with a crappy open rate, your email won’t even be read, which means you won’t make any money. Yes, this means that you need to write fantastic subject lines because all the hard work you put into an email newsletter will be lost without an amazing open rate.

However, there’s still that little metric that comes before the open rate, which is your delivery rate. If half of the emails on your list is bouncing, that means that many people on your list aren’t even getting your emails.

In the business of renting lists, it’s incredibly important to know your delivery rate, so that you know what you’re paying for. If you’re renting a list from a company that refuses to show you your delivery rate through their own reports, then you have no real idea what your open rate is.

When you are building your own email lists, you should be watching how long an email address bounces for and remove it after 6 months.

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There are four items to consider if you want to maximize your email deliverablity:

  • The email newsletter is delivered to the inbox.
  • The email newsletter includes a prominently placed white list request.
  • The email newsletter is sent at regular intervals.
  • The email newsletter is delivered to the inbox at an appropriate day/time.

If your email newsletter doesn’t get delivered to the recipient’s inbox, the chance of it being read is gone.

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Getting through Internet Service Provider (ISP) filters requires a mix of technology and relationships; most email service providers (ESP) provide what you need. Harder is getting through filters that reside on the recipient’s desktop, like those offered by Microsoft Outlook, McAfee and Cloudmark; your best bet here is to ask readers to “white list” you by adding your newsletter’s from address to their address book.

Many email marketers now attach an address book listing to their email so that the user can instantly add the email to their address book by opening it.

The timing of your delivery can also make or break your ability to reach readers. The email newsletter should be sent at regular intervals and delivered at an appropriate day/time (weekdays during business hours for B2B, weekends or evenings for B2C).

For more tips on email deliverability, download our free 10 Email Design Best Practices white paper.

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