Email Conversion Rate Benchmarks

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As more platforms emerge, email continues to reign as a key marketing channel for retailers. For nearly two decades Listrak has partnered with thousands of clients to analyze, establish, and drive results. This report details overall and vertical-specific email benchmarks by campaign type to help marketers gauge and track program performance.


Data is based on approximately 32 billion emails sent by Listrak clients during 2017, with all clients based in the US and functioning as either omni-channel or pure play online retailers. Open rate, click to open rate (CTOR), conversion rate, and revenue per email sent were tracked across campaign types. The results in this report are calculated based on overall averages; in many cases, our clients are seeing results higher than what is reported.

Metric Definitions

Open Rate - The percentage of email recipients who opened a given email.

Click To Open Rate (CTOR) - The percentage of email recipients who opened an email and then clicked through the email via a link.

Conversion Rates - The percentage of email recipients who clicked through an email and completed a desired action, such as purchasing a product, entering a sweepstakes, or filling out a form.

Revenue Per Email Sent - The average amount earned for each email sent.

Key Findings

  • Top-performing campaigns having some of the highest open, click and conversion rates were Alerts (Price Drop and Back in Stock) and Replenishment\
  • Cart Abandonment continues to deliver strong results across all engagement metrics
  • Post Purchase campaigns averaged YOY increases in open rate (17%), CTOR (43%), conversion rate (25%), and revenue per email sent (76%)
  • Activity and life cycle-based campaigns consistently generate higher engagement than marketing messages (sometimes more than triple…without the ongoing work!)

Overall Email Benchmarks

Vertical Email Benchmarks

Apparel • Shoes • Accessories • Jewelry

Art • Art Supplies • Crafts

Auto • Boat • Motorcycle

Baby Gear

Beauty • Grooming • Cosmetics

Books • Film • Music (Content)

Computers • Electronics (Hardware)

Education • Training

Firearms • Tactical Supplies • Survival

Flowers • Gifts

Food • Beverage • Alcohol

Health • Drug

Housewares • Home • Hardware


Mass Merchant

Musical Instruments • Equipment

Office • School Supplies

Pet Supplies

Tobacco • E-Cigarettes

Toys • Hobbies • Sporting Goods • Camping