One of the beloved pastimes of the digital marketing industry is prognosticating about the end of email marketing. Every year, it seems, someone or another publishes an opinion piece about how email is on the way out, to be supplanted by social, or mobile/SMS or any number of other channels. 2018 was a particularly difficult year for email, since it brought the beginning of a wave of regulatory crackdowns and other issues that the industry struggled to keep up with, but make no mistake: 2019 saw a major rebound, and email isn’t going anywhere. Site Impact of course has a vested interest in the email marketing industry, but we think we’re pretty well-founded in saying that with the right strategies, email will continue to be a winning prospect for years and years to come.
Now that we’re solidly into 2020, it’s a good opportunity to take a look at the year before and see how the industry as a whole performed. The good news is that studies from around the world show growth in 2019, especially compared to 2018. A Campaign Monitor study found that globally, email marketing made a major comeback--though of course in certain parts of the world more so than others. The global average unsubscribe rate in 2019 fell by 0.08%, though in the UK it fell even more drastically: from 2.4% in 2018 to 0.2% last year. Open rates and click-through rates (CTR) also saw significant boosts in 2019, and are slated to further improve in 2020.
Ultimately, the takeaway is simple: email isn’t going anywhere any time soon. The fact that email performance continues to grow across the industry demonstrates rather conclusively that it’s far from being the dying medium that some doomsayers would consider it; but more importantly, the areas that saw the biggest boosts in 2019 indicate a shift in email strategy that is important for marketers to take into consideration. No matter how annoying new regulations may seem, compliance actually seems to improve marketing performance, rather than hamper it. Fewer unsubscribe requests, and higher open and click-through rates indicate that recipients are more engaged, and--having been empowered to pick and choose their email frequency and types--more interested in what brands have to say. As long as brands adhere to what consumer feedback indicates, they’ll continue to get results.
The studies into 2019’s benchmarks for email marketing are here, and the outlook is good. Email performed much better last year than it did the year before, with brands and marketers getting more into the swing of things and getting more comfortable with regulations that made things a little more difficult in 2018, leading to better performance and happier email recipients. Contact Site Impact to learn how we can help you get the most out of your email marketing campaigns.