Email marketing has its own lingo.  You have probably heard many of these terms but you may not know exactly what they mean.

Bounce Rate

The rate at which your emails are not delivered. An acceptable bounce rate is less than 5%.  Soft bounce is when you have a temporary issue the email wasn’t delivered.  A hard bounce is when the email is no longer valid.


Short for ‘Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography And Marketing Act of 2003.’  CAN-SPAM outlines rules for commercial email, establishes requirements , provides email recipients an out or way to unsubscribe, and defines the consequences for violations of the Act.

CTR (Click-Through Rate)

The percentage of clicks within the email (click on a URL within the email).  This is shown as a percentage of people that open the email.

Conversion Rate

This is also shown as a percentage.  And it shows the percent of people that responded to the call to action.

Double Opt-In

Double opt-in requires subscribers to request to be added to the list and then confirm again.  While this is the best way to prevent people reporting you for spamming, it also results in the lowest amount of opt ins.  Some marketers choose this while others don’t for the obvious benefits and problems.

House List (or Prospect/Customer List)

This is gold.  This is a list that is permission-based that you built yourself with opt-in subscribers.

HTML vs. Plain Text Email

The pretty emails you see are HTML.  You can use HTML to design the emails.  There is also plain text which is text only.  Most email software programs allow you to create both so you give your email recipients the option to choose.

List Segmentation

When you segment your list, you are putting your email subscribers into different categories depending on a variety of different things such as client vs. prospect, age, sex, preferences, etc.   The more you can segment your list, the better you will be able to target the information (and have more people engaged with the content included in your email).

Open Rate

This is the percentage of emails that were opened in a campaign.

Opt In / Opt Out

Opt in means someone subscribed to be on your email list.  Opt out means someone unsubscribed (and no longer wants to receive your emails).

Triggered Automation

This allows you to send different emails depending on what action the email recipient takes.  For example, if someone does not open an email they may receive the same email a 2nd time.  If they open it, they may receive one email.  And if they open it and click on a link inside the email, they get a different email.  This allows you to really target your list, be able to see who is most interested in the subject matter