Tracking Data in Your E-Mail Marketing Campaign

By John Arnold

You have to be an advanced HTML and database programmer to track your marketing e-mails on your own, but an e-mail marketing program (EMP) can do the work for you. EMPs automatically add special tracking code to the links you include in your e-mails. The tracking code is unique to each individual on your e-mail list and tied to each e-mail campaign. EMPs also have programs that automatically read the code from other e-mail servers when they return undeliverable e-mail so you don’t have to do the hard work to determine why a particular e-mail wasn’t delivered.

E-mail tracking reports are analytical summaries of the results of a given e-mail campaign that can tell you

  • Which e-mails bounced

  • Why they bounced

  • Who opened your e-mails

  • What links they clicked

  • Who unsubscribed from your e-mails

  • Who forwarded y our e-mails

    A sample summary e-mail tracking report from an EMP. [Credit: Courtesy of Constant Contact]
    Credit: Courtesy of Constant Contact
    A sample summary e-mail tracking report from an EMP.

Making sense of the data in an e-mail tracking report takes a little getting used to because the technology involved in the e-mail tracking process causes the data to take on a slightly different meaning than you might expect.