CTOR vs CTR + all of the email benchmarks
Metric Stack 27: CTOR, CTR, and more!
Welcome to the first Metric Stack Newsletter of 2022!
I’m Priyaanka Arora, your personal metric assistant. It’s my job to take you through a new metric each week, accompanied by industry trends and the latest benchmarks.
Remember how it works? One (or two) metrics, definitions & formulas, benchmarks, and tips to maximize the potential of your data.
Ready for the ride? Let’s start #MetricStack2022 with some good old email marketing metrics:
What is Click-to-Open Rate (CTOR)?
Click-to-Open Rate (CTOR) is the percentage of unique email opens that result in unique clicks on any link included in your email. Here’s the formula:
CTOR = Unique Clicks / Unique Opens
Let’s pause for a moment to fully understand what that means. A unique email open happens each time a unique member of your subscriber list opens your email. One email recipient will only ever count as one unique email open.
A unique click is recorded the first time a unique email open clicks on one of the links embedded in your email body. Additional clicks on the same link by the same person do not count.
Put that together, and you have CTOR.
What is Email Click-Through Rate (CTR)?
Email Click-Through Rate (CTR) is the percentage of link clicks by the total number of email recipients. Here’s the formula:
Email CTR = Unique Clicks / Unique Email Deliveries
CTR is slightly more straightforward than CTOR in its formula. You count the number of unique clicks on links in your email, and divide that by the total number of successful email deliveries.
However, many businesses prefer to track CTOR over CTR as their primary measure of a successful email campaign.
You might wonder why. Clicks lead to conversion, so what’s the problem?
The subtle difference between these two email marketing metrics is what makes CTOR so insightful, and CTR somewhat of an accessory metric.
What’s the difference between Click-to-Open Rate and Email Click-Through Rate?
CTOR measures clicks as a percentage of opens while CTR measures clicks as a percentage of email deliveries. Essentially, CTOR adds an additional qualification to the formula - an email delivery has to result in an email open to count.
HubSpot asked the bold question, Is CTR Dead?
But before you completely write off the usefulness of any metric, let’s understand how to use CTOR vs CTR:
Use CTOR to measure how effectively your email’s content and call-to-action (CTA) converts readers into clicks.
CTOR is the metric of choice for most email marketers because it helps measure your conversion goals.
Email marketing serves a number of purposes, including brand awareness, customer nurture, and acquisition. A call-to-action (CTA) makes the purpose of your email clear and easy to find.
Pro tip: always attach a CTA to every marketing email sent. A clear CTA is a direct ask that your recipients will either respond to or ignore.
And CTOR measures if most of your recipients are responding to (high CTOR) or ignoring (low CTOR) your CTA.
Use CTR to measure the utilized opportunity of your email.
CTR helps you take a step back and check the big picture success of your email. Of all the people who got your email, what percentage of recipients are compelled to open and click through your email?
Email Open Rate affects CTR. If your recipients aren’t opening your emails, you don’t get the corresponding clicks and conversions.
Pro tip: combat low CTR by experimenting with compelling subject lines and by regularly maintaining your email list health.
CTR can be a great indicator of following email best practices, trustworthy branding, and good first impressions.
Email marketing benchmarks to look out for in 2022
If you’re wondering what a high or low CTOR and CTR look like, check out the latest email marketing benchmarks from Campaign Monitor.
In summary, good email marketing benchmarks are: 18% Email Open Rate, 2.6% CTR, and 14.1% CTOR on average, across a wide range of industries.
How to maximize the potential of your email marketing campaign
As always, here’s your reminder that benchmarks are merely a guide and your data can vary based on multiple factors.
That’s why it’s so helpful to track all your data in one place. And if HubSpot is your CRM platform of choice, you’re in luck!
Klipfolio PowerMetrics offers you tons of instant data connectors to HubSpot, MailChimp, and hundreds of other data sources, completely free forever. It is truly the first and only analytics tool you need.
Stay tuned for the next edition of Metric Stack Newsletter to get the latest scoop on all things metrics!