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Mobile Email Benchmarks by Industry

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Several industries passed the email "mobile tipping point" in 2013, with more than half of all sent marketing emails in the vertical opened by consumers on smartphones or tablets, according to a recent report from Knotice.

The open rates of emails sent by the consumer services, hospitality, and financial services industries all rose past 50% in the second half of 2013, the analysis of 1 billion emails sent by companies in 11 industry segments last year found.

Overall, the number of emails opened on a mobile device (smartphone or tablet) rose to 48% by the end of 2013, a 33% increase compared with the second half of 2012.

Even the B2B segment, which has traditionally skewed more to desktop email reading, moved steadily toward mobile last year: Opens on phones jumped 33.7% from early to late 2013, and tablet use for email nearly doubled.


Below, additional key findings from the report.

Engagement by Industry

  • Financial service companies had the highest mobile click-to-open rate (CTO)—the ratio of unique clicks as a percentage of unique opens—in the second half of 2013.
  • B2B emails had the lowest CTO both on phones and on tablets.

Opens by Time of Day

  • The share of email opens occurring on mobile devices is at its highest point during evening, late night, and early morning hours.
  • Mobile email opens on phones outpace opens on tablets roughly 2:1 during daytime hours.

Opens by Phone Type

82% of all email opens analyzed occurred on iPhones; the bulk of the other top phones were Android devices.

About the research: The report was based on data from 1 billion emails sent by companies in 11 industry segments in 2013.


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Ayaz Nanji is an independent digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Content, a marketing agency specializing in content creation for brands and businesses. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji

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