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Find Out How To Increase Email Open Rate For Your Campaigns

Updated on: Feb 22, 2022

In this article, we will explore how to tackle a low email open rate,  what is a good email open rate 2020, 2021, 2022, how to increase email open rate, how to measure email open rates, and more. 

We are pretty sure that you’ve heard of the term email open rate. What is the email open rate exactly? Most people think it is the rate of the number of people who opened your email. Sounds logical, doesn’t it?

An email is counted as open only when the following takes place-

  • A viewer sees the images in your email and sees your email fully
  • The viewer clicks a link in the email

The email rate is then calculated by dividing the opened emails by the total number of emails sent that did not bounce, divided by 100. 

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What influences an email open rate? 

So, what affects email open rates? The click-to-open rate is affected by various factors. Let’s have a look at some of them –

  • Frequency

People usually unsubscribe due to too many emails flooding their inboxes. A solution to this is email segmenting and refining your audience. Your content needs to be tailored specifically for a certain audience. 

  • Timing

You need to determine when is the right time to send out your emails. Which day of the week, how many times in a week, what time are your users most active? All of these factors play a big role in your email open rates. 

  • Permissions

You need to make your sign-up process easy and transparent. Your users should want to sign up. You need to provide value to them and not come across as spammy. When they share their email address with you, they trust you with their email inbox. 

  • Subject Lines

An email subject line plays a big role in your user clicking on your email. You need to keep them simple, personalized, create intrigue, and short, to-the-point. 

How To Increase Email Open Rate: Tips & Ideas 

Why is my email open rate so low’ is a question we’ve heard one too many times. There are a number of ways to increase email open rates, and we have some tips for you – 

1. Keep your list relevant

Keep updating your list – you do not wish to send emails to people who are simply not interested in your product or service. 

2. Target Audience

Send out emails to the right target audience. Invest in market research before even strategizing your email campaigns. 

3. Use Segmenting

Using email segments – do not simply build a list. You can tailor your content to specific segments so that you have quality leads as well.

4. Avoid being marked as spam

As much as possible, do not use spammy language in your emailers. Spam filters have become smarter and smarter. Here are a few tips that can save you the hassle of being marked as spam –

  • Avoid using words like free in the subject line
  • Use lower case for the subject line preferably 
  • Always give the user an option to unsubscribe to your email 
  • Ask the subscriber to add you to their list
  • Never use their email ID for anything else other than newsletters

5. TIming needs to be perfect

Test out different times of the day and see what works best for you. There are brands like Faasos and Swiggy that send out emails just before mealtime with exciting offers that entice users to make a conversion. For more email marketing tips, read these 13 essential marketing tips and tricks for businesses. 

6. Use good subject lines

Always make sure that your subject lines are on-point. One-third of subscribers open their emails based on how interesting the subject line is. You need to leave the reader a little curious for them to open your email.

Pst, we have added some tips for good subject lines further in the article, so make sure you stick till the end. 

7. Email Content

Make sure your email content is impactful and relevant. It also needs to be meaningful. Your subject line cannot be talking about one thing and your email is carrying a completely different topic. 

8. Emojis

Use emojis sparingly. Sometimes, they are used to bringing humor in. Be smart about where to use them and how to use them as well in good taste. 

9. Why would a subscriber unsubscribe

Really dig into why a subscriber unsubscribed from your newsletter. Are there any improvements you can make? Usually, users unsubscribe as the emails may get uninteresting or annoying. 

10. Use Moment Marketing and new content

Try and leverage moment marketing and fresh, interesting content in your strategy. This will keep the users engaged as well. 

11. Build anticipation

Build anticipation around major campaigns – do not give it all out. 

12. Email Marketing Tools

Wondering how to increase email open rate – HubSpot recommends that you use email marketing tools. These include Mailchimp, Mailjet and more. Read this article for the best email marketing tools you should know about.

Subject Line Templates & Examples 

Here are a few email subject line templates and examples that you can use – 

  • Simple email subject lines

Emails with a specific purpose need to have a simple, fuss-free subject line. They usually involve a kind of order status, notification, or update. 

how to increase email open rate - simple subject lines

  • Funny email subject lines

These are a few examples of funny email subject lines by Zomato. They are witty and are worth the chuckle! It makes you want to open the email just out of curiosity. 

how to increase email open rate - funny subject lines

  • Urgency email subject lines

Urgency subject lines instill in you a fear of missing out or being left behind on an important offer. This appeals to the flock mentality. The scarcity of words like ‘ending today’ and ‘limited period’ bring about urgency. 

how to increase email open rate - urgency subject lines

  • Click-bait email subject lines

These are email subject lines that entice the user to click on the email. It can be very random and hence, it makes the user curious. 

how to increase email open rate - click-baity subject lines

  • Listicle email subject lines

Listicles make great subject lines. Lists are easier to comprehend. 

how to increase email open rate - listicle subject lines

  • Personalized email subject lines

Personalized email subject lines are the best. They promise higher open rates and make the user feel valued and appreciated. 

how to increase email open rate - personalized subject lines

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Q. What is a good email open rate for 2021 and 2022?

A good industry benchmark for email open rate is about 17% – 28% in 2022.

Q. Is a 10% email open rate good?

The average open rate in 2020 was 21.3%. The average open rate as of today is about 21%. There are a number of ways to optimize the open rate. The email open rates by industry differ.

Q. How do you optimize the open rate?

You can optimize your email open rate with the following steps –

  • Keep updating your lists
  • Segment your list
  • Broadcast your email at the right time
  • Use catchy subject lines
  • Personalize your email
  • Make sure your email is personal
  • Write fresh content every time

Q. What factors affect email open rates?

The following factors affect email open rates – 

  • Event triggers
  • Brand recognition
  • Good content
  • Relevant subject lines
  • Urgency
  • Time of the day 

Q. How to increase the open rate in Mailchimp?

Here’s how you can increase the open rate for Mailchimp-

  • Use A/B Testing
  • Avoid spam language
  • Have a synergistic social media campaign 
  • Have a compelling subject line
  • Always test the email
  • Check the mobile version as well

Q. How to find an email open rate?

You calculate the email open rate for an email campaign by dividing the number of unique emails by the total number of emails sent that did not bounce multiplied by 100. 


We hope that this article helped you to optimize your email open rate. This short course in digital marketing will help you understand digital marketing as a whole and help you integrate email marketing with the rest of your digital marketing strategy. You can also check this MBA in Digital Marketing out if you are on the lookout for an MBA-Level course.

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Daksh Juneja

COO, Avignyata Inc. & Digital Marketing Trainer, IIDE

He is currently COO at Avignyata Inc. - Digital Marketing Agency and has worked with 1400+ clients from various industries. Few clients worked on Shoppers Stop, Inorbit Malls, Disney, TGIF, Nexus Malls......[Read full bio]


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