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Q2 2013 North America Email Trend Results: Marketers Must Segment and Test To Drive Continual Subscriber Engagement

Epsilon’s Email Activity Segmentation Evaluation Finds 51% of the Average Email File is Active

Dallas, TX — October 08, 2013 — Epsilon, the global leader in creating customer connections that build brand and business equity, and Email Institute, the Epsilon-powered email marketing best practices destination, today released the Q2 2013 North America Email Trends and Benchmarks report. The report shows 51% of an average email file was active during the 12-month study period. This percentage continues to increase slightly quarter over quarter, as 50.1% were active in Q1 2013 and 49.9% in Q4 2012. Meanwhile, 49% remained inactive, highlighting the need for marketers to segment and test email messaging and abandon batch and blast approaches.

The report also found an increase in the number of triggered email messages deployed. In Q2 2013, triggered messages accounted for 3.5% of total email volume, an increase over this same time last year (2.6%).

“In our previous Email Benchmark reports we have encouraged email marketers to pay specific attention to their unengaged email subscriber population. Our Q2 2013 findings indicate marketers have been doing just that,” said Judy Loschen, Vice President of Digital Analytics at Epsilon. “However, acquiring a new email subscriber is just half the battle. Keeping the consumer engaged with the brand is just as important. Engagement is not a linear process; it’s a continual loop that requires a lot of work, but yields loyal customers with higher lifetime values.”

Business As Usual (BAU) Email Trends
The quarterly analysis is compiled from 6.1 billion emails sent by Epsilon in April, May and June 2013 across multiple industries and approximately 150 participating clients. The analysis combines data from Epsilon’s proprietary platforms.

BAU Highlights:

  • Non-Bounce rate remained strong at 96.1%
  • Open rates decreased quarter over quarter (-8.3%), but increased over last year (+11.5%), resulting in an overall open rate of 28.5%
  • Click rates were 4.3%, a decrease both quarter over quarter and year over year

Triggered Message Email Trends
Triggered message benchmarks are compiled from more than 216 million triggered emails sent by Epsilon in Q2 2013 across multiple industries. Results track campaigns deployed as a result of an action or trigger such as Welcome, Abandon Shopping Cart, Thank You and Anniversary.

Triggered Highlights:

  • Triggered messages accounted for 3.5% of total volume, an increase of 30.6% over last year (2.6%)
  • Triggered open rates were 70.2% higher in Q2 2013 compared to BAU messages
  • Triggered messages continued to perform well, reporting 152.3% higher click rates than BAU messages

Email Activity Segment Evaluation (EASE)
These metrics are compiled from more than 710 million non-bounced and opted-in email addresses that were contacted from July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2013 across multiple industries and approximately 150 clients. The EASE analysis, which includes behavioral segments, examined the overall performance of the average email file.

EASE Highlights:

  • Half of an average email file had at least one open or click during the 12-month study period
  • On an average list, 65% of new subscribers, defined as addresses that have been on a marketer’s file for less than three months, had no opens or clicks
  • Approximately 20% of subscribers in an average email file had opened or clicked in the most recent three months

“Leveraging consumer data to understand why an individual subscribed to your email program, their channel preferences, purchase behaviors and their interests is vital. Without a comprehensive view of your customers, email marketers will struggle to effectively engage subscribers and drive results,” Loschen said.

For more information and industry-specific benchmarks, the Q2 2013 Email Trends and Benchmark report is available at