Is Your Email Marketing Working? Baseline Metrics Auto Parts Etailers Should Know

Wondering how your email marketing effort compares to the rest of the auto parts and accessories industry? See how you stack up to the industry averages.

First, What Are Our Email Metrics?

The main email metrics are:

  • Open rate – The percentage of people who open an email campaign.
  • Email click-through-rate (CTR) – The percentage of people who click on a link inside the email.
  • Revenue per 1,000 emails (RPME) – This is a measure of how much money your emails generate per 1,000 recipients.

While there are some other email metrics that have value, these three tell a good story about the effectiveness of an email campaign.

What’s A Good Open Rate? CTR? RPME?

First, a caveat: “Good” is a relative term.

If your company has never sent an email with an open rate higher than 4%, “good” might be finding a way to get to 6%. Likewise, if your average open rate is 40%, you’re going to be much higher than average…but that doesn’t mean your email campaigns can’t be better.

According to Constant Contact*… According to MailChimp**… What we see at Spork…
Average Open Rate 13.34% 16.75% 15.00%
Average CTR 7.08% 2.32% 3-5%
Average RMPE N/A N/A $80.00

Again, these are averages. Half of our clients are higher or lower than these figures. We have some clients earning $150 in revenue per 1,000 recipients, and others that are earning $20 per 1,000 recipients. It varies quite a bit.

Still, these numbers can help set expectations if your company is new to email marketing. If you’ve got a list of 1,500 email addresses, sending out a newsletter might only net 30 website visitors and $120 in revenue.

NOTE: This is the reason why most companies don’t send emails, by the way. When a company first gets started, sending out a newsletter seems like it has only a small impact on sales. Of course, the cumulative effects of ongoing email marketing are important…regular contact with your previous customers builds loyalty. Before you begin sending emails, ask yourself these 4 questions.

Other Worthwhile Email Marketing Metrics

In the marketing world, email open rates and click-through rates are most often discussed, but they are not the end-all be-all. We value these metrics, too.

  • Email shares – A tweet and an email forward may not always carry a heavy weight, but every lit bit of exposure helps.
  • Personal feedback – If you do email marketing right, you can expect a note or a phone call from a subscriber with a compliment or question from time to time. We’re all for creating personal connections with your community when you can. Who knows where it may lead?
  • Media coverage – It doesn’t happen often, but it does happen that a reporter reaches out to us after an email campaign is sent out. Auto industry reporters are always looking for story ideas. Just be sure all members of the media opt-in to receive your emails.
  • Website activity – We like to see how email subscribers behave on a website and use that data to improve conversions over the long-term.

Email Is A Numbers Game

As you can see from the metrics above, you need a big email list to generate revenue. An email list of 1,000 people isn’t nearly as valuable (in terms of revenue generation) as a list of 100,000. So, if you want to grow your business, you need to focus on collecting email addresses. For example, you could offer coupons to get more newsletter subscribers and run giveaways to get more newsletter subscribers.

Whatever you do, the worst thing you can do is nothing. Even if your monthly newsletter doesn’t generate $1 in revenue, it’s worthwhile. Every time a customer sees your company name, that’s an impression that helps to build loyalty.

*http://knowledgebase.constantcontact.com/guides/KnowledgeBase/5409-average-industry-rates

**https://mailchimp.com/resources/research/email-marketing-benchmarks/

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