What’s Your Normal Email Open Rate?

May 22, 2015 - Get free updates of new posts here

Before I show you how to get 30% more opens, let me prove something.

What’s your normal email open rate?




You may think you have an insanely good open-rate on your emails but…

50%+ of the people ARE NOT OPENING your emails.

Why work so hard if only 1 out of every 2 people open your emails?

That’s like you going to the bank, giving them $10 and they always give you back a $5.

So, here’s how to increase your email open rates by an additional 30% at least.

I call it Double-Opens!

Last week I emailed out on SumoMe how to 10x your email conversions.

Here’s how the open rates looked:

71% of people didn’t open the email which you KNOW hurts my feelings. #sadnoah

How many people are NOT opening your emails? I’m guessing it’s similar.

So I did what Neal from Easybib taught me at an exclusive marketing meetup and it got me 30% more opens!

Here’s how:

Step 1. Take the SAME email you sent and CHANGE the subject line to something new

Step 2. Email it out a week later JUST TO YOUR NON-OPENS

The results speak for themselves:

11% more total opens so far which is 30%+ more opens than if I did nothing.

1 minute of work = 7,028 more people read my email.

I’ll let the wantrepreneurs of the world spend 80 hours on writing their business plans, while I grab more people and make more sales with this one little tweak.

Your 1 minute homework: If you’ve sent an email to your list in the last 4 weeks. Go into your email software, and re-send to the un-opened subscribers.

Then tweet at me: “Wowza! This worked. So Simple. I got [##%] open rate on my resend.”

Double Double,

Noah “tacos” Kagan

P.S. If you DON’T have a 1 million+ email list already, then installing SumoMe on your site right now is by far the lowest hanging fruit you can do. Two minutes of work = should 2-4x your daily email subscribers!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

49 responses to “What’s Your Normal Email Open Rate?

    1. Fawzi Nassim Reply

      Hello Matt,

      If you wanna make quantity then you’ll have to worry about your unsuscribre rate.
      If you wanna make quality, you’ll never mind.
      If people wanna unsuscribe after my second mail to increase the open rate, no problemo.
      I rather have less people suscribed and more readers, than less readers and more suscribed.



    2. Andrei Orha Reply

      I also worry about the email fatigue. A good open rate means means a good reflection on you, but a bad email is a bad reflection on your company. I don’t think it’s worth gaining 10 opens for one unsub.

    3. Doug Reply

      Matt, I’ve been doing this for about 6 months and I don’t see any more unsubscribes or complaints than normal. I don’t do it for every email I send, but maybe a quarter of the time.

  1. Omer Reply

    This is a great idea Noah, But…
    since I started doing this I noticed a huge decrease in my email open rate, from 30% to 20% open rate.
    Maybe it’s due to the fact that ISP see this a spam?
    (sending the same E-mail twice)

      1. Mike Reply

        Stop the clock. There is a general “seasonality” associated with email opens? I could just go check out my data to see, and I’m sure I will, but I would love to hear more about that.

        This is a great idea and I’ve seen great results in the past.

  2. Jacob McMillen Reply

    I had a similar experience to Omar.

    Was averaging a 45% open rate with 25% clickthrough. I tried this strategy, and I got 27% more opens but my next campaign dropped to 33% opens and 7% click-throughs.

    I even reworded the re-send. I wonder what the deal is.

  3. Ian Brodie Reply

    Any thoughts on the impact on the very many people who did open it, but where your email system didn’t register the open (e.g. images switched off or reading the email in the preview pane as very many people do).

    My gut feel is that this strategy annoys some of your best subscribers (the ones that open first time, but where the open didn’t register) in order to get more opens from your worst subscribers (the ones who don’t open first time) so I’m ambivalent.


  4. Corey Koehler Reply

    This is a great strategy. I’ve been using it for years in a few of separate niche’s with lists that are much smaller. Only thing I do differently is send it out 2-3 days after the original mailing (as apposed to the week you suggested).

  5. John Reply

    Having sent over 269,000 emails in 3 years with an open rate of 19 to 46% average it depends on the offer. If your email isn’t compelling, relevant, educational and/or entertaining, no one will respond. Kinda depends are you dealing with consumers or businesses. Blindly pounding the same content rarely fools the highly interested, but it is true you have to send something 4-7 times for success. There is no easy button, and calling with an email will increase your odds. Match emails with Olark.com since many emails are opened and toast in less than 15 mins.

  6. Serena @ Thrift Diving Reply

    Jon Morrow has been talking about this for a long time and that’s where I picked it up from him. I’ve KNOWN about it, but I have only done it a few times. Yes, it does work. But the problem comes when you already have a content schedule that’s pretty beefy that’s sending 3 emails per week. So if you send an email on Monday…70% doesn’t open it…but you’ve got emails coming to them on Wed. and Friday this week. But you also have 3 new emails coming to them NEXT week, too. There’s really no where to squeeze that email back in. Otherwise, you’re going to be sending out emails 5 days a week. OR….you’re going to have to spend time figuring out who you emailed and when. It gets too confusing. This is only realistic if you’re sending 1 email (maybe 2) per week. More than that and you’re spamming people, I think. (At least, that’s how I feel).
    Would love to know your thoughts on that.

  7. Joseph Hansen Reply

    Email marketing has been part of my campaign and yes, I’m not really sure about my email’s open rate. So I am hoping that this post of yours will be of great help not just to me but to other brands who have been using email marketing the wrong way.

  8. Atul Singh Reply

    I love using SumoMe for one simple reason- IT WORKS. It works really well even compared to other paid products. And the additional functionality is also useful.
    @noah- Can you give some tips for growing a new internet marketing blog’s traffic? What are the optimal strategies for new blogs to grow the traffic?

  9. Gary Dobbs Reply

    Nice blog Noah! For whatever reason I do not get new subscribers very often unless I ask people to visit my site. I have $0 budget to advertise to people to go visit my site! So hopefully I’ll find more free advice and tacos that help!

  10. Rhys Timothy Kilian Reply

    Hey Noah, this is an interesting way to increase email open rates. I’ve shared this article.

    Just wondering how you think this would compare to just following up on the previous email. Do you think you’d get a lower, same or higher open rate?

  11. Jerry Reply

    So there a way to inject this into an established sequence on Aweber.

    As it stands, if drop in a new message (let’s say… between already established message 5 and 6), this would cause subscribers to be resent all the messages again below the new inserted message wouldn’t it?

    This sounds awesome! I’m going to give it a shot but just thought it would be great if you could just create a duplicate in your automatic sequence so it could run on autopilot.

    Hit me up Noah!


  12. Ian Reply

    So simple it hurts! I think that it should be part of the plan for any marketer. Also the platforms who deliver these campaigns and other providers ie MailChimp or Campaign Monitor etc should offer this service as a real feature which would set them apart.

  13. Ian Reply

    Another factor may prove this is worth doing is that people might be away from their offices (on vacation or on business). When they are confronted with larger numbers of emails when they finally sit down to go through them may tend to skip over the less critical emails. So having another go at sending the same message or slightly different message may arrive at a less stressful moment in time.

  14. Mike Reply

    Lol, that’s actually brilliant, great tip! Although for me, I’m still using mailchimp, I wonder if I can track all the people who opened? -probably not.

  15. Olga Reply

    Great tip! I’ll use it asap! PS. I use SumoMe but it’s sooooo buggy for me! My readers complain that they always get the “Houston, we have a problem” message lol

  16. Dominik Harman Reply

    Tried this for the first time yesterday… Original email got 55% open-rate (I have only 450subs so openrates are higher) and the second one got 31.9.


    Thanks for this great simple tip.

  17. Andreea Reply

    Thanks for sharing this, Noah. In most cases I do the same, but I had clients who refused to implement this strategy because they thought those who didn’t open the email in the first phase weren’t interested at all. Well, some of them probably weren’t interested but for others maybe it was just a bad moment, or maybe they had too many emails and newsletters in their inbox and preferred to delete everything that wasn’t actually urgent. But it’s wrong to assume they weren’t interested at all if it’s just one email they didn’t open. So yes, I think this method should be used more often, and as other commenters have said, in lots of cases simplifying is the best solution.

  18. Tim Reply

    Great post Noah! How many times can you continuously do this to the same group of unopened? The group will dwindle each time as more people open the email but where do you draw the line and say it’s not longer worth the time?