Cold Email Campaign KPIs You Should Be Tracking

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Among all cold email campaign KPIs there is one and only key result you should put first. Whatever you are trying to sell – a service or a product, an agreement – the number of “closed deals” is what you should be focusing on.

Let’s try to answer how to structure the rest of the funnel when using cold email campaign KPIs and how to make sure we are focusing on the accurate metrics and results.

Example of Cold email campaign and possible conversion rate range

1. Number of emails sent

The general rule a lot of companies are following is; “The more emails you send, the more deals you close”. As much as we would all love to believe that and simply look for a gold mine of emails waiting for us to be picked up and spam “their inbox off”…. It’s not that simple.

It really depends on the size of your market, time, type of customers, type of product, price, demand, your email copywriting and technical performance. It depends on your domain and email account reputation and much more. 

Just to avoid the complexity of the topic let’s simplify and say, you and your company should find a HEALTHY volume of emails you are sending and find out what works best for you through experimentation and A/B testing. Here is how to generate a list of emails in seconds.

“So how many emails should we be sending?” 

Let’s say that you should start small with new email accounts. “Small” practically means sending as much as one new employee would be sending starting to use their email address. 

Start with 40 a day and incrementally increase daily with 3 more emails each day, until you reach around 100-200 daily. Yes, if you do it manually you will blow your brains out. Be smart and use existing tools. Look for “email warm-up service”. It will give you a chance to warm up your email account and a chance to track how many warmed up emails are ending in spam and how many stay healthy. 

You can reach 250 emails daily with a very high open rate (Up to 80% depends on the target groups). Usually, the open rate with mass campaigns is around 18-25% depending on multiple factors.

2. Number of emails delivered

Deliverability of emails is a topic missed by many marketers. Bad deliverability affects your email account and domain reputation and it is the main reason why many of your emails land in the spam folder. 

It is important to make sure you are targeting the RIGHT group of people behind those emails and that the emails you are using are verified. 

What does “verified” mean? How can we do it?

There are tools that can help you answer that question and there are many. Those tools will go through your list of emails and though technical approach verifies if email addresses exist or not. Or on more simple terms, they answer, if emails you are sending land in the inbox or not. Look for email verification tools online.  

What is a normal deliverability rate?

You should aim for 2% of bounce rate or less. Anything above 5% is a red flag.

3. Number of emails opened

Small advice before we tackle the topic; Make sure you are sending follow up email to the same addresses in porter to multiply the chances of them opening your emails. 

We have explored and experienced many different open rate results from different scenarios and it’s really hard to generally say what is the normal open rate. 

If you are doing newsletter campaigns you can expect anything between 10-30%, could be more, could be less, depending on the industry. Many major email service providers will say the same. For details check this article.

What is a “normal” open rate?

If you are just starting with the smallest amounts of cold email campaigns you should aim for more. Your open rate should be HIGHER than 50%!

If you are doing bulk email campaigns, you can expect much lower results (e.g. 20% or lower). We do not recommend doing that unless your domain and email account is well established and has a good domain reputation. 

You can check your reputation with multiple tools.

4. Number of emails – clicks on CTA button (Call to Action)

Depending on your camping format, what kind of action do you expect your recipient to perform? Two most us usual actions: Click on CTA button or reply to an email.

What is a normal click rate?

Again, id depends. It depends on your target group and on your copy of the email that should persuade the reader to do so. Our experience shows between 4-40 % click rate depending on how good we manage to set the cold email campaign.  

5. Number of emails with reply (if relevant to your campaign)

Read the paragraph above. If your aim is for your recipients to reply to you, your content of an email should be formalized in a way that motivates someone to actually do that.

There are many online resources that can help you with their experience and suggestions on how to do that better.

What is an expected reply rate?

The expected range of emails being replied to is between 0% and 20%.
Our experience shows that reply rates are lower when the CTA button is included. Usually rages between 1 – 4%.

When you formulate an email with the only goal to collect replies it can go much higher. One of the cold email campaign service providers claims that it mainly depends on the volume. Their benchmark analysis based on the personalization of emails shows the average reply rates between 3 and 18% (woodpecker.co, 2020).

(Woodpecker.co, 2020)

6. Number of emails with unsubscribed prospects

We all know what that means. Your recipients do not wish to hear from you again and you should respect that. Make sure that your emails are in the accordance with rules of GDPR and other possible laws.

What are your best cold email campaign KPIs?


Product manager 

Creator of Prospect Role. Product manager during the day and content writer overnight. Growth focused all day long =)