Back to Basics: What’s the deal with the “delivered rate”?

Posted by Chad Malchow 

So you would think measuring how much email makes it to the inbox and how much doesn’t would be straightforward. Unfortunately, like most things in email, it’s complicated. As usual the complexity is largely a function of misleading terminology and the lack of transparency in the email eco-system. In an ideal world the “delivered rate” metric would mean exactly what it seems to say: the percentage of email that arrived in the inbox. In fact, most of the time “delivered rate” is the percentage of email that was sent but didn’t bounce. If the email didn’t bounce, it should have been delivered to the inbox, right? Wrong.

Typically, an Email Service Provider considers email to be “delivered” whether it goes to the inbox or junk/bulk folder. We have said time and again that an email can’t get clicked on and can’t create revenue if it isn’t delivered to the inbox. We believe that to get a response from a subscriber, the email must be placed in the inbox by the receiving party or ISP. That is why “Inbox Placement Rates” can give far greater visibility into your actual return on investment – but where do you get that data? Ready to scream or pull your hair out or both?

Return Path is here to help. We have the resources and technology to tell you exactly where your email is going, every day and every campaign. Ready to find out how to gain visibility into how much of your email made it to the inbox? Want to learn more about the tools and technology you need to have to improve your deliverability? Want to hear from the real experts?

You’ll get all of the above by reading our new checklist on getting to the inbox. Sign up to get a copy of Back to Basics today.

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