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Email Open Rates
Alexis Simoneau, CAE 1/30/2024 11:24:00 AM

Why are my email open rates lower with CharityEngine than with other email software? 

It’s easy to panic when you switch from software like MailChimp or Constant Contact to CharityEngine and see your open rates decline. But is panic necessary? 

Not really! When you are comparing one solution to another, the view rate – or the open rate – isn't the best way for an apples-to-apples checklist. 

First, the way the view rate is calculated varies from vendor to vendor, so you can only trust the accuracy of one method of calculation. Beyond that, sometimes things happen at the Email Service Provider level (ESP) that prevent us from tracking views, such as if a recipient opts against downloading images when receiving emails. So view rates aren’t highly reliable. 

A more accurate metric to measure is response rates. This measures how well your email performs, which is, of course, your goal. A high response rate indicates more than a high open or view rate, it means your email works! 

Another point to consider is that a switch from one domain to another—such as from a dedicated domain to a shared domain—often triggers a brief and temporary uptick in spam reports. If you’re following CAN-SPAM best practices, just remind your users to mark your emails as “not spam” and the problem should subside.  

As you’re considering your email list and optimizing deliverability, there are some things you can do to help make sure your donors are getting the important communications your organization is sending. Take a look at this helpful resource that explores best practices for email deliverability and offers guidance so you can monitor performance and manage your email list. 

So don’t panic! We recommend giving it some time, asking your users for help in unchecking the emails from spam, and measuring response rates rather than view rates if you want an accurate look at how an email campaign is performing. 


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