Boosting Average Email Open Rates

Content Writer
March 21, 2024

Email plays a big role in B2B marketing. Yet, many businesses face the challenge of dwindling email open rates, which can severely impact lead generation and customer engagement efforts.

This challenge shows it's getting harder to get noticed online. It also shows why it's so important to use smart strategies that grab your audience's attention. If you don't, your emails might just get ignored, missing out on opportunities for growth and connection.

How average email open rate is calculated

What exactly is an email open rate? It's a measure of how many people open the emails you send out. This number is crucial because it shows whether your emails are catching interest or if they're just getting lost in the crowd.

The formula to calculate the average email open rate is fairly straightforward. Here’s how it looks:

Average Email Open Rate = (Number of Emails Opened / (Number of Emails Sent - Number of Bounces)) * 100

In this formula:

  • Number of emails opened is the total count of opened emails.
  • Number of emails sent is how many emails you've sent out to your list.

Number of bounces refers to the emails that couldn't be delivered to the recipient's inbox.

What is a good average email open rate?

The ideal email open rate can fluctuate across different sectors. Insights from Mailerlite reveal that government entities, healthcare providers, and non-profit organizations tend to achieve the highest open rates, recording figures of 46.94%, 46.67%, and 46.49% respectively.

On the other hand, the industries with the lowest performance include games, with a rate of 32.02%, construction, at 32.48%, and marketing and advertising, which stands at 33.62%.

Anything that’s above your industry’s average will be considered a good email open rate.

What influences email open rates

Several factors can affect whether someone decides to open your email or not. These include things like:

  • Subject lines: Catchy and clear email subject lines make someone want to click.
  • Sender’s name: People are more likely to open emails from somebody they recognize. Generic company emails have lower open rates.
  • Timing: Sending emails when your audience is most likely to be checking their inboxes increases your chances.
  • Email list segmentation: Not everyone is interested in the same thing. Dividing your audience based on behavior and interests and sending relevant information to those segments can boost your average open rates.
  • Personalization: Generic emails that don’t even use the recipient’s name have little success.
  • Email sending frequency: If you’re constantly bombarding your contact list with emails, your recipients will unlikely to open new correspondence they receive from you.

Five proven techniques to increase your average email open rates

There are many ways you can try to boost your average email open rates. Here are some of our favorite strategies that can move the needle:

  1. Craft irresistible subject lines

The subject line is the first impression your email makes and can greatly influence the decision to open it. It is estimated that subject lines under 50 characters result in 12% higher open rates.

To craft a subject line that stands out, focus on creating a sense of urgency or curiosity, making a compelling offer, or personalizing it to the recipient.

To illustrate, using phrases like "Last chance!" or "You won't want to miss this" can drive urgency, while personalization can make the recipient feel directly addressed, increasing the likelihood of opening the email. A/B testing different subject lines can help identify what resonates best with your audience, allowing you to refine your approach over time.

  1. Personalize

Email personalization goes beyond inserting the recipient's name into the subject line or greeting. It involves tailoring the content to meet the interests, needs, and behaviors of the individual. By leveraging data on past interactions, purchases, or engagement, you can create content that feels bespoke.

For instance, sending a special offer on a product related to past purchases or content that addresses specific industry challenges can make your emails more relevant and engaging. Personalization boosts open rates and enhances the overall customer experience, fostering loyalty and long-term engagement.

  1. Optimize send times

The timing of your email can significantly impact open rates. Each audience segment may have different preferences or routines, making it crucial to identify when they are most likely to check their inbox. Utilizing email marketing tools that offer insights into the best-performing send times based on past engagement data can help optimize your scheduling.

Additionally, considering time zones and the recipient's typical workday can further refine your send times, ensuring your emails arrive at a moment when they're more likely to be seen and opened.

  1. Use email marketing platforms

If you aren’t using email marketing platforms yet, you definitely should! Email marketing platforms handle the heavy lifting for you, making sure emails hit your customers’ inboxes at the right time.

For example, tools like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, and SendGrid have features that figure out when your audience likes to read their emails. They also let you split your contact list into smaller groups. This means you can send more personalized messages, which people are more likely to open.

Plus, these platforms come with easy-to-read reports. After you send out emails, you can see which ones got opened the most and learn what worked well. It’s like getting a cheat sheet for your next email.

  1. Think outside of the traditional inbox

If it turns out that email isn't the most effective way to connect with your audience anymore, consider switching gears.

For example, you could try using Slack to send out your marketing messages. Slack offers a more direct and immediate way to chat with your customers or within Slack communities, cutting through the usual email inbox clutter. It's a great tool for creating closer, real-time conversations.

Plus, using Slack is particularly handy in B2B scenarios, where fast, collaborative communication is key to building strong relationships and keeping customers engaged.

FAQs about email open rates

What is a good open rate for marketing emails?

A good open rate can vary widely by industry and the type of email sent. However, a general benchmark for a healthy open rate is between 17% to 28%. This range indicates that your emails are well-received and engaging to your audience. It's important to compare your open rates against industry averages to set realistic goals.

What is a good open rate for newsletters?

Newsletters, often containing a mix of content including updates, insights, and resources, tend to have varying open rates. A good open rate for newsletters is usually slightly higher, around 17% to 40%, as they are typically sent to a more engaged segment of your audience who have opted in specifically for this content.

What's a good open rate for email marketing in the B2B sector?

In the B2B sector, where emails are often more targeted and relevant to the business needs of the recipients, a good open rate might range from 14% to 30%. The effectiveness of B2B email marketing depends significantly on the relevance and personalization of the content, as well as how well-segmented the email list is.


You can improve your email open rates. However, that’s down to experimentation and implementation of strategies like perfecting your subject lines, personalizing your emails, and even stepping beyond email with tools like Slack for better engagement.

Here's what to remember:

  • Catchy subject lines and personalization are key.
  • Timing and segmentation matter a lot.
  • Alternative platforms like Slack can boost engagement.

If you're on the hunt for a better method to send your marketing messages, especially through platforms like Slack, Thena could be worth a look.

Thena is an intelligent tool designed for B2B companies that handle customer support across multiple channels but prefer to manage everything from a single location—Slack. It links your Slack Connect channels directly with your email ticketing system and web inquiries, allowing you to oversee all customer interactions conveniently from Slack.

The tool not only automatically identifies customer requests and converts them into support tickets for the right team members to resolve, but it also gives you detailed insights into customer behavior and your support team's efficiency.

Moreover, Thena helps you craft and run marketing campaigns directly on Slack. Thanks to its no-code builder, you can design engaging marketing messages, target them to specific groups, and monitor how well they're doing. Whether it's sending out a monthly newsletter or promoting an upcoming webinar, Thena lets you manage it all within Slack.

Ready to reach your audiences with the right message at the right time? Try Thena for free now.

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