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Understanding your mailing response numbers

Opens, clicks, shares, new signups and opt outs are tracked at the recipient level, once your email reaches that person's inbox. Many of the numbers on your response page are clickable, letting you click on the total to see which recipients took those actions.

While most of your response will occur within the first 48-72 hours after you've sent, those totals will continue to tabulate for days. Bounces in particular take at least 24 hours to finish processing, so give your mailing plenty of time before considering any results official.


In the inbox, definitive actions that happen while a person is connected to the internet are trackable. Someone views your mailing in its HTML entirety -- We can track it. Someone clicks one of the links back to your website -- We can track it. Someone forwards your mailing to a friend using the Share this email option in the email template's footer -- We can track it. Some things aren't trackable - like someone viewing the plaintext version of your mailing and not clicking anything, or someone forwarding your email to others the old-fashioned way, using their email client.


The number of people who opened your mailing in a trackable way

The Open rate is calculated by dividing the total number of emails opened by the number of emails that were successfully delivered. That means that bounces or any emails that are not delivered are not used in this calculation. This number is a good indication of general engagement, and many use it to prove the effectiveness of their subject line tests. 

We're able to track two kinds of opens:

  1. When someone views the HTML version of your mailing (including the images). So if the email is opened and images are blocked by default in the email client, the open won't "count" until the recipient clicks to download those images.
  2. When someone receives the plaintext version and visits at least one of your links. Since there are no images in the plaintext version, we can only track an open if a link in the plaintext version is clicked. If that happens, we track the open and the click on the Response page.

We can't track an open if someone receives the plaintext version and doesn't do anything with it, if someone views an email offline or if someone views a limited-HTML version that doesn't contain the images. For this reason, it is highly likely that your true open rate is higher than can be reported (by us or anyone), and that some people who won't appear in your open list have indeed opened and seen your mailing. For more on how opens get tracked, read this article.


The number of unique clicks and total clicks in your mailing

Clicks are broken into two categories: unique and total clicks. Unique clicks exclude members clicking the same links multiple times. Total clicks do count multiple clicks. Links are routed through our server on their way to their final destination, allowing us to record the click. (The process happens very quickly and is virtually invisible to the person clicking the link.) Any trackable link in your mailing will appear in the mailing response's Click Analysis section, including any links that appear in your template header (a logo that links to your home page, e.g.) or footer.


The Click Analysis shows the total clicks in your mailing. Click List at the top-right for a more detailed breakdown of the total number of clicks for each specific link in your mailing. If you click on the link's name, the link will open in a new browser window, to remind you where this link routed.

Clicks, by link

The number of clicks each link in your mailing received

In addition to telling you how many total and unique clicks your mailing, as a whole, received, we also show you how many total and unique clicks each individual link received. Select the Clicks tab at the top of the mailing's response page to access this.

You may notice that these click metrics are calculated differently than they once were. In the past, clicks were tracked based on the number of people who clicked rather than the number of links that were clicked. We feel the current system is a more accurate representation of data and aligns with how most other analytics record clicks. Since this change, we are revisiting how we calculate the number of people who clicked as it displays on the overview page. Right now, it is possible to see a percentage over 100 as that figure is calculated as the number of unique clicks divided by the number of opens. We will update this page as enhancements to the calculations are made.


The number of email recipients who shared this mailing

To see who is sharing your mailings over email or social networks, view the response for any mailing with Share this email options enabled, and click on the Shares tab.

You can see the total shares, as well as the breakdown by network.


Below the shares, you'll see a list of exactly who shared that mailing and to which network they shared.

New signups

The number of new people who subscribed using the signup link at the bottom of this particular mailing

At the bottom of your template is a link that allows people to sign up if they received your email as a forward or saw it posted on a social network and would like to receive your future emails directly. If someone uses that link to sign up, we track it as part of the new signups total on the response screen for that particular mailing.


The number of contacts who opted out of your email list

Should someone desire to leave your email list (not that they ever would, of course), the self-removal process is instant and permanent. They click the opt-out link at the bottom of your mailing, and voila, they're set to Opt-out status and removed from Active status of your audience.

Our opt-out process, called TrueRemove®, acts as an independent service that instantly and permanently removes contacts from your active audience. It protects your subscribers, and it protects you.

Helpful tips

  • Encourage folks to share your mailings. If you really want people to share your email, it's always a good idea to remind them to use the Share this email options. It gets them thinking about it and encourages them to forward or post in a way that delivers a clean, fresh copy to that next wave of readers. After all, the people most likely to help you grow your list are the people who already know you and love what you have to say.
  • If someone emails you directly asking that you opt them out (instead of using the opt-out link to do it themselves), remember to honor those requests immediately by logging in, finding that subscriber's record, and changing his or her mailing status to Opt-out. For how-to instructions, see this page.

Stylish advice

Understand how your response numbers stack up. Like all response numbers, open rates vary wildly based on the quality (and permission level) of an audience list, the nature of the content and other factors. The average open rate for our entire sending community is about 20%, which is right in line with the industry average for permission-based sending to house lists.