In the second quarter of 2012, email volume rose 10 percent year-over-year, according to Experian Cheetah Mail’s “Quarterly Benchmark Study: Q2 2012.” The travel industry thrived the most in the second quarter, as its volume rose 41 percent from the second quarter last year.
According to the report, overall email volume rose 10.1 percent year-over-year in the second quarter, with the travel vertical seeing volume rise 41.3 percent. Other strong verticals were consumer products and services with a 19.0 percent increase, and media and entertainment with a 16.9 percent increase.
However, overall email volume increased just 2 percent in the second quarter compared to the first quarter of 2012. Experian notes that all verticals except travel saw their quarter-over-quarter growth slide from their marks in last year’s second quarter.
In the second quarter, the total open rate was 21.9 percent, up 1.5 percent from the mark observed in the second quarter of 2011. The unique open rate was 15.2 percent, up 2.5 percent from the same period last year.
Meanwhile, the unsubscribe rate was 0.15 percent in the second quarter, down 23.0 percent from the rate observed in the second quarter of 2011.
“While click rates continued to show a year-over-year decline, there is some evidence that the rates are stabilizing,” according to Experian.
The report also looked at the effect the connection between email performance and social media. Experian looked at emails sent between January 2011 and March 2012 that had references to social media sites in the mailing name or subject line.
According to Experian, emails mentioning Pinterest exhibited a unique open rate of 14.1 percent, followed by emails mentioning Twitter (14.0 percent) and emails mentioning Facebook (12.7 percent).
In terms of unique click rates, emails mentioning Pinterest exhibit a 2.6 percent rate, followed by emails mentioning Twitter with a 2.3 percent rate and emails mentioning Facebook with a 1.9 percent rate.
The top-performing offers for “like us” campaigns are: “percent off” with a 95.4 percent lift from no offer, “coupons” with a 52.7 percent lift and “free item” with a 47.3 percent lift.
According to The Retail Email Blog, the top online retailers sent 15 percent more promotional emails each during the week ending Aug. 31, year-over-year.