Return Path’s 2017 Deliverability Benchmark Report finds global inbox placement remains relatively consistent at just 80%

NEW YORK — One in five commercial emails worldwide fails to reach its intended target, according to the 2017 Deliverability Benchmark Report from data solutions provider Return Path. This new research reveals that just 80% of email is delivered to the inbox, while the remainder—a full 20%—is diverted to spam folders or gets blocked altogether.

The report’s findings are relatively consistent with the company’s 2016 and 2015 benchmarks, which reported a 79% global inbox placement rate. While this rate has improved slightly in the past year, the significant percentage of filtered messages means that marketers are still missing out on a valuable opportunity to drive meaningful revenue from the email channel.

“Email remains the most popular and effective channel available to marketers, so it’s more important than ever to get it right. If your emails aren’t reaching the inbox, you’re missing out on an opportunity to build relationships and generate ROI,” said George Bilbrey, Return Path’s president. “But email filtering continues to evolve, as mailbox providers apply increasingly sophisticated algorithms to deliver only the content their users truly want.”

Email marketers in the U.S. saw the lowest inbox placement of any country analyzed, with just 77% of messages reaching subscribers—up from 73% in 2016. Meanwhile Canadian marketers achieved one of the highest inbox placement rates in this study, with an average of 90%.

Other key findings include:

  • Marketers in European countries generally exceeded the global inbox placement rate, with averages of 82% (France and Spain) and 84% (UK). Of the European countries studied, only Germany fell slightly below the global average with 79% inbox placement.
  • For the second year in a row, Australian marketers maintained average inbox placement of 90%—tied with Canada for the best result in this study.
  • Looking at inbox placement by industry, the best results were found in sectors with strong account-based consumer relationships such as banking & finance (94%), distribution & manufacturing (92%), and travel (90%).

This annual benchmark report from Return Path examines how email is delivered and how inbox placement is measured, along with global, regional, and industry benchmark results by quarter. The complete 2017 Deliverability Benchmark Report, including inbox placement statistics broken down by country, can be downloaded here.

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Lloydmedia, Inc is based in Markham, Ontario, Canada, and is a multi-platform media company which delivers a total audience of more than 100,000 readers across four national magazines, three industry directories, and a range of events and online marketing.

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