Basics of Email Marketing – Part 3

Jul 1, 2019 | Featured, Marketing

In Part 2 we took at look at the best practices when it comes to email marketing as well as the regulations such as GDPR if you missed part 2 and are looking for more information on best practices and regulations check it out here.

This time we are going to be taking a look at how to analyze your email marketing results to help you make informed decisions regarding your marketing campaigns. 

Here are some of the best ways to track the effectiveness of your email marketing campaigns.

A/B Testing 

Not all email lists are the same, some audiences prefer personalization and some will think it’s spammy. Some audiences enjoy big bright CTA buttons and some prefer something more subtle.

You’ll never know what type of people make up your email list until you test the variables. This is where A/B testing comes into play.

A/B testing or split testing is a way to see what type of email performs best with your audience by analyzing the results of email A again email B.

Here is a quick walkthrough on how to set up an A/B test:

  1. Select one variable at a time, for example, subject line, CTA or images
  2. Create 2 versions of the email, one with and one without the variable
  3. Allow your emails to be sent out simultaneously for a period of time
  4. Analyze your results and keep the version that worked best for you
  5. Test a new variable and repeat the process

Most email marketing providers have A/B testing built into their software, which will make it easier for you to compare email results without too much work.

Email marketing KPI’s

There are 4 key metrics to keep an eye on when evaluating the effectiveness of your email marketing campaigns.

  1. Deliverability – measures the rate at which emails reach your subscriber’s inbox
  2. Open rate – the percentage of people that open your email once it reaches their inbox
  3. Click through rate (CTR) – the percentage of people that click on your CTA’s
  4. Unsubscribes – measures the number of people who opt out of your email list once they receive an email from you

Improve your email results

There are many factors that can impact your KPI’s, it will take a bit of experimentation to work out and what works best for your emails and your audience.

If you aren’t reaching your targets it’s worth playing around with the variables to see what improves your email results.


  • Make sure you are following best practices to avoid spam filters
  • Remove inactive people from your email list and keep only subscribers that are engaged
  • Check which emails bounced and remove those from your email list

Open rate

  • Experiment with the language in your subject line to engage with people to open your email
  • Try sending your emails at different times of day to see what works best for you

Click through rate (CTR)

  • Make sure your offer holds value to your audience
  • Rewrite your copy to make it clear to your audience what you want them to do
  • Try different CTA’s whether it’s visual graphics or written copy, bold vs subtle


  • Secretly a good thing as you are losing uninterested audience members automatically and making your list more relevant
  • Ensure your email aligns with your brand
  • Make sure you haven’t promised one thing with your offer and delivered another
  • Double check you have provided value to your audience before you try and upsell

Email marketing report

Collecting all this data is no good if you don’t put together a report you can form future decisions from.

An email marketing report is a spreadsheet where you can record your results in one place to help you make inferences from your KPI’s and take action to improve them.

Here’s how we would recommend you organize your report:


  • Total number of emails sent
  • Number of emails delivered
  • Deliverability rate
  • Bounce rate
  • Open rate
  • Click through rate
  • Unsubscribe rate


  • Subject line
  • Length of the email body
  • Offer
  • CTA 
  • List segment

Questions to ask:

  • Was your deliverability rate high in comparison to previous periods?
  • How did your CTR compare to your open rate?
  • Were your unsubscribe numbers consistent with other emails?
  • Did a certain subject line perform better than others?
  • Does the length of email make a difference in CTR?
  • Could another style of CTA perform better?
  • Was the offer appropriate for the list segment?
Charlotte Allkins | Marketing Assistant

Charlotte is the Marketing Assistant for Helm, coming from a design background she loves creating all types of content. Discover more of her blogs, as well as, many others here!


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