Have you ever sent out an email campaign and noticed that some of the recipients showed as “opened” nearly instantly upon sending, while others took a while or didn’t show at all? This discrepancy can be confusing and make it difficult to interpret your email open rates accurately.

If your contacts are using Apple Mail or are behind corporate firewalls, it’s likely that your open rates are being affected by email privacy measures. Here’s what you need to know.

Apple Mail

Apple Mail Privacy Protection: Apple Mail is a popular email client that is used by millions of people worldwide. In an effort to protect user privacy, Apple introduced Mail Privacy Protection with the release of iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and macOS Monterey. This feature blocks email tracking pixels, obscuring email open rates, and making it difficult to know exactly when an email has been opened.

If your recipient is using Apple Mail to access their Gmail or other email provider’s inbox, then their email will be proxied through Apple’s servers, which will affect your open rates.

Corporate firewalls

Many companies use firewalls to protect their network and prevent unauthorized access to their data.

These firewalls can also affect email open rates by blocking or caching tracking pixels, which are used to track when an email is opened. If your recipient is behind a corporate firewall, then their email client may not be able to download the tracking pixel, which will affect your open rates. If they cache the pixel, it may show as opened immediately.

So, what can you do to get a better understanding of your email open rates? Here are a few tips:

  1. Use other metrics: While open rates can be a useful metric for measuring the success of an email campaign, they’re not the only metric you should be using. Click-through rates, conversion rates, and revenue generated are all important metrics that can give you a better understanding of how your email campaign is performing.
  2. Use a different tracking method: If you want to track email opens more accurately, you can use a different tracking method that doesn’t rely on tracking pixels. For example, you could use a unique link in your email that redirects to your website. By tracking the number of clicks on that link, you can get a better understanding of how many people opened your email.

Open rates are just one metric among many that you should be using to measure the success of your email campaign. By using other metrics, segmenting your audience, and using different tracking methods, you can get a more accurate picture of how your email campaign is performing.