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  1. #1
    SitePoint Enthusiast
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    Best way to now if a newsletter is read

    Hi All,

    i would like to know what method you use to now how much people have read a html email.

    Sorry about my english.

    Best from Spain,
    Vince.

  2. #2
    SitePoint Addict Jamieharrop's Avatar
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    The only way I can think of to do this would be to include a small, invisible image in the newsletter which is located on your server. It will then just be a case of checking your Web site stats to see how many times that image has been viewed.

    It may not be 100% accurate, because people may read the newsletter more than once, but it should give you a ruff idea.

    At least I think that will work. I don't use HTML emails too often. A quick test should show you whether it works or not.
    Regards,
    Jamie Harrop

  3. #3
    SQL Consultant gold trophysilver trophybronze trophy
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    in my opinion it doesn't matter how many people have read your email

    what matters is how many of them do whatever it is you want them to do (buy a product, sign up for a service, etc.)

    what is the purpose of your newsletter?
    r937.com | rudy.ca | Buy my SitePoint book: Simply SQL
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  4. #4
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy bigalreturns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by r937
    in my opinion it doesn't matter how many people have read your email

    what matters is how many of them do whatever it is you want them to do (buy a product, sign up for a service, etc.)
    But if you were trying to evaluate the effectiveness of your newsletter it would matter. For example, say I sent out 10,000 email newsletters, and got 30 favourable responses (ie a buy, a sign up etc). I want to improve on this rate of response. If I know that out of the 10k I sent, 9000 were read, giving 30 sign ups, then I probably need to improve the content/writing of the newsletter. If, however, only 100 out of 10000 were read, then my newsletter was pretty damn good, but I need to put some more effort into getting valid email addresses, or making it look less spammy, but I know my writing is good.

    To answer the original question, I'd probably do the 1px x 1px invisible image, but use a unique identifier for each email, for example, <img src="http://mydomain.com/image.php?id=xxxxx"> then using PHP or some other language, store the id in a database, and then return the image. Then you could count unique ids in the database and get an idea of how many different people read the email.
    "The proper function of man is to live - not to exist."
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  5. #5
    SQL Consultant gold trophysilver trophybronze trophy
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    how do you count the number of people who have set their email programs to display plain text only?
    r937.com | rudy.ca | Buy my SitePoint book: Simply SQL
    "giving out my real stuffs"

  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy bigalreturns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by r937
    how do you count the number of people who have set their email programs to display plain text only?
    Fair point. I'd still rather have some idea of how many have been read, rather than no idea.
    "The proper function of man is to live - not to exist."
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