My email was opened by <br/>only 20 % of people to whom I sent it. Is it a lot or little?

Email marketing

My email was opened by
only 20 % of people to whom I sent it. Is it a lot or little?

Few days ago we crossed the border of 5 million sent emails from our marketing system Quanda. We are also closer to the border of 100 thousands sent emails per day more often. With a growth of total number of Quanda users and the following growth of total number of sent emails, more often we get questions like: “My email has been opened by only 20 % of respondents. Should I be satisfied or is it not much? Why have only 5 % of people clicked on the links in the email, isn´t it little? Why is there always somebody who logs out, how can I avoid this?”

  • Jan Spáčil
  • Author

  • Jan Spáčil

Based on these and other similar questions, I have prepared this article, in which I would like to share with you our long-time experience in this field.

How to orient in the statistics of email campaigns and what the particular numbers mean

Firstly, let´s have a look at the particular numbers that we follow within the statistics of email campaigns in our system.

Blacklisting of email addresses

Before we start, I would like to explain the term “Blacklisted”. As you have already noticed, in the contacts there is a column “Blacklisted”. The value is “Yes” or “No”. The value “Yes” means that at this address, a problem with an email delivery occurred and it is not possible to deliver an email to this address at this time.

This status is either permanent, for example, when we find out that the address doesn´t exist, either temporary, which means that this address is put on the list of blacklisted addresses only for a certain period and after that, we put this address back on the list of the addresses to send and we try to send the next email to the address again. If we find out that the sending failed again, this address is put again on the blacklist and we determine a certain time (days, weeks, months) after which the address returns back to the addresses to send.

If it is impossible to send an email to this address repeatedly, for example because of full mailbox, it is returned to the blacklist repeatedly and the time determined for remaining there is always longer.

This mechanism is introduced in our system mainly as your protection against blacklisting of your entire domain on one of the servers which maintain these lists. One of the reason, why you may appear on this list is that you are constantly trying to send emails to the addresses which don´t exist or don´t work.  If this activity is repeated, the world of the Internet takes a stand that the sending is robotically processed disregarding the fact that the email delivery is not possible and they start to penalize you as the sender.

They put your domain on the blacklist and then all your emails end as undelivered or at the spam boxes of your receiver.

The method we chose effectively prevents from this status and so you send the emails only to the addresses which do work.


The values in the statistics of email campaigns and their importance

Now let´s explain the values which you can find in the statistics of email campaigns.

A number of sent emails

This figure means the total number of emails contained in an email campaign including the addresses which are marked as blacklist (see above).

A number of delivered emails

This figure means a number of truly delivered emails to your receivers.

A number of undelivered emails

A difference between a number of sent emails and a number of delivered emails is a number of undelivered emails. These are the addresses which are marked as “Blacklisted” and we work with them according to rules mentioned above.

A number of opened emails in total

This number signifies a total number of opened emails. If somebody has opened your message repeatedly, it will be included several times. So, if you send e.g. 100 emails which somebody opened more times than just once, then this number will be bigger than a total number of delivered emails.

A number of opened emails uniquely

This number means how many times your email was opened uniquely i.e. by the concrete receivers without regard to how many times the receiver opened the email. Therefore, if all receivers who got your email opened it, then this number will be equal to a number of delivered emails.

A number of unique clicks

This number shows a number of receivers who clicked on one or more links once or more times. It is simply a number of receivers who clicked at least once on any link in your email. In the statistics below, you can see a detailed view and information about the receivers divided depending on which link they clicked. If somebody clicks on all links in your email, he will be on each of the lists next to the particular link. 

A number of sharing on Facebook

This number means a number of receivers who clicked on the icon to share the content of your email on Facebook.

A number of sharing in Google+

This number means a number of receivers who clicked on the icon to share the content of your email in Google+.

A number of sharing on Twitter

This number means a number of receivers who clicked on the icon to share the content of your email on Twitter.

A number of logged out users

Here you can see a number and a list of receivers who logged out from receiving your email campaigns.


That´s it briefly about the numbers you can see. On the page with the statistics, you can also see a percentage of particular values to a total number of sent emails and the performance of your campaign in relation to particular groups (labels).

How to look at the results and what to expect from email campaigns in terms of numbers?

In order to better demonstrate how everything develops nowadays – a number of opened emails, undelivered emails, clicks, logged out users according to business types, we found for you below mentioned table, in which you can see the values divided for various business types.

The values were taken from 200 000 000 sent emails by one of the largest providers of email services in the world. Look, how your field is doing and compare these values with your statistics.

Business Type Open Rate Bounces Rate Clicks (Click-Through Rate) Opt-out Rate
Accountant/Financial Advisor 15.56% 9.87% 12.04% 0.18%
Art Galleries/Museums 24.66% 10.39% 10.22% 0.24%
Business products and services 14.32% 9.04% 11.49% 0.19%
Communications 16.82% 8.57% 17.28% 0.12%
Consultant (ex. marketing, management) 14.92% 10.72% 10.59% 0.20%
Crafts 24.28% 6.20% 20.55% 0.16%
Education and services 20.53% 8.98% 12.59% 0.18%
Entertainment (ex. musicians, theatre, film) 16.37% 8.44% 10.27% 0.18%
Event planner 17.33% 10.43% 11.10% 0.26%
Franchise 15.50% 9.99% 7.67% 0.33%
Government agency or services 23.89% 9.21% 13.23% 0.17%
Hotel, Inn, B&B 20.27% 9.60% 10.00% 0.44%
Legal services 20.55% 12.17% 11.19% 0.25%
Manufacturing and distribution 19.40% 11.49% 12.00% 0.27%
Marketing/Adv/PR Agency 13.18% 9.89% 11.15% 0.15%
Medical Services 18.29% 10.06% 11.19% 0.32%
Nonprofit - Arts organization 21.88% 9.11% 8.71% 0.21%
Nonprofit - Association 22.22% 10.09% 10.25% 0.12%
Nonprofit - Education 24.97% 8.52% 11.68% 0.20%
Nonprofit - Health and human Service 23.07% 9.37% 12.46% 0.26%
Nonprofit - Membership organization 22.88% 10.50% 10.92% 0.16%
Nonprofit - Other 22.66% 10.04% 11.33% 0.19%
Nonprofit - Religious organization 25.01% 7.64% 9.19% 0.11%
Office supplies 15.12% 6.41% 9.96% 0.21%
Other 18.63% 9.48% 14.70% 0.20%
Personal services (ex. dry cleaning, photography) 19.56% 9.86% 12.08% 0.33%
Professional services 16.30% 10.13% 11.52% 0.26%
Publishing 18.26% 9.41% 20.88% 0.12%
Real estate 17.49% 12.79% 9.82% 0.22%
Restaurant, bar, caterer 19.02% 9.90% 5.89% 0.30%
Retail (online and offline) 18.01% 6.95% 13.99% 0.21%
Salon and spa 17.85% 12.51% 6.26% 0.38%
Sports and recreation 19.70% 9.19% 11.89% 0.25%
Technology 15.93% 12.24% 10.47% 0.25%
Transportation 19.34% 9.44% 12.65% 0.32%
Travel and tourism 18.18% 10.17% 10.61% 0.22%
Web developer 16.58% 8.25% 15.25% 0.15%


See what tools for email marketing you can find in Quanda.


I´ll keep my fingers crossed for you, and I wish the great results with your email marketing.