Industry Update
Opinion Article 8 May 2019

2019 Email Benchmarking Guide for the Hospitality Industry

By Ash Salleh, Director of SEO at Campaign Monitor

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Campaign Monitor just released an email marketing benchmarks report. The report contains data from over 30 billion emails sent in 2018 by companies across different industries, from retail to agriculture to healthcare.

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Email marketing for the hospitality industry

The hospitality industry is one of over 20 industries included in Campaign Monitor's email marketing benchmarks report. Here is some crucial data from the report that every hospitality marketer needs to know.

The average email benchmarks for the travel, hospitality, and leisure industry are as follows:

  • Open rate - 16.62%
  • Unsubscribe rate - 0.16%
  • Click-through rate (CTR) - 12.56%
  • Bounce rate - 0.93%
  • Spam rate - 0.00%

Meanwhile, here are the average email benchmarks for all industries.

  • Open rate - 17.92%
  • Unsubscribe rate - 0.17%
  • Click-through rate (CTR) - 14.10%
  • Bounce rate - 1.06%
  • Spam rate - 0.002%

Key takeaways for the hospitality industry

At 16.62%, the average email open rate for the hospitality industry is relatively healthy, considering that marketers generally consider a "healthy" open rate to be between 15% and 25%.

In terms of clicks, the hospitality industry has nothing to fear. Its CTR of 12.56% is pretty high. To compare, the average CTR for emails worldwide is only 3.2%.

With regard to the more negative aspects of email, such as unsubscribes, bounces, and spam reports, it seems the hospitality industry has nothing to worry about either.

The average unsubscribe rate for the hospitality industry is 0.16%. This is somewhat lower than the average unsubscribe rate across all industries, which sits at 0.17%.

The hospitality industry's bounce rate is also inconsequential. It's only 0.93%, which is again lower than the average rate of 1.06% for all industries.

According to the data presented by Campaign Monitor, the hospitality industry has a spam rate of 0%. This means hotels, resorts, travel agencies, and airlines do not have to worry about their emails getting marked as spam by subscribers.

Are email marketing benchmarks useful?

Now that you know about email marketing benchmarks for 2019, you might be asking yourself, "How does all this data help me?"

It can give you an idea of your own brand's email performance in comparison to current industry standards. Are your own averages higher or lower than the averages of the hospitality industry? Second, email marketing benchmarks also give you an idea of how you can improve your emails.

For example, if your brand's CTR is significantly lower than the hospitality industry's average of 12.56%, then you already know that you need to work on increasing your click-through rates.

While the following should not be taken as comprehensive advice, consider these tips to help improve your CTR as well as other email metrics.

  • Click-through rate (CTR). Make sure your emails render well on any device by taking advantage of mobile-optimized email templates.
  • Open rate. Include subscribers' first names in your subject lines for added personalization. You can also A/B test different send times and days. According to Campaign Monitor's data, the day with the highest open rate for the hospitality industry is Thursday (17.1%).
  • Unsubscribe rate. Segment your audience so that you're able to send targeted emails. This way, you keep your audience interested and prevent them from unsubscribing.
  • Bounce rate. Avoid email bounces by maintaining the health of your list. Never purchase lists from third parties and remove invalid email addresses from your list immediately.

Conclusion

When it comes to enhancing your overall email marketing strategy, learning about email marketing benchmarks is not enough. You also have to analyze your own data and make adjustments wherever necessary. In addition, you need to perform A/B testing on various elements in your emails.

For instance, if your emails are not getting enough opens, this might be due to ineffective subject lines. In that case, you'd have to craft better subject lines that attract the attention of your subscribers and encourage them to open your emails.

If you want to compare the email performance of the hospitality industry to other industries, feel free to check out Campaign Monitor's Email Marketing Benchmarks for 2019.

Ash Salleh

Ash Salleh is the Director of SEO at Campaign Monitor, where he works closely with content, copy, and analytics teams to improve site-wide optimization. Prior to his time at Campaign Monitor, he also provided SEO and digital marketing expertise at Zappos and Axiata Digital.

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