Very Low Open Rates

Our open rate on the email blast is very low only 1.4% or 27 people out of the 1900 that were delivered. I'm very perplexed because the email meets all the criteria for a good email:
  • short call to action
  • Meaningful call to action - free
  • less than 3 images on the email
  • targeted audience (our own guests is as targeted as it gets)
  • sent at historically good open rate timing per our past emails
Back in 2019 I was experiencing this same thing and why I stopped using constant contact but thought I'd try again. The open rates had gotten very low (we used to consistently get 30% open rates which is amazing and then it started to get as low as 4% open rates). I spoke constant contact back then and they didn't have any good answers. My theory at the time was that people's junk/spam filters are better than they used to be and they agreed with that, but I wouldn't think that would cause open rates to go from 30% to 4%. 
Has anyone experienced the same thing or have any answers or suggestions? 

Hello @YvonneL99,


Thank you for reaching out to the Community! I do apologize that your email did not receive the open rate you were expecting. I do recommend taking a look at this helpful article on how to Improve Your Open Rates to see if any changes can be made. This article also includes tips on improving your sending reputation that may help! Thanks. 

Zoe H.
Community & Social Media Support

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Hi YvoneeL99,

We have at times experienced the same thing but we have a relatively high open rate. We have found that we get a better open rate if we use a carefully worded subject line. I'm sure you already know that but sometimes they almost have to be a bit jolting. For instance, we've had events and people have told us in person they're attending but don't respond to an email or even open it when we use a line like Upcoming events...even Important Upcoming Events...but if we phrase the subject line as a question, we often get many more opens. For events, we might use Are you coming? sometimes even Are you coming or not?  of course the body of the email has to be such that it is conversely but equally kind and uplifiting after a subject line like that, but they seem to do the trick. Also, subject lines like "You're in!" or "You are awesome!" etc. work well. It just takes a bit of round about thinking sometimes. I  hope that helps a bit.

This is a great comment, thanks for sharing @TonyandPatriciaB! I'll also add that we have A/B testing for subject lines if you would like to experiment between two.


It sounds like you've already considered a lot of the best practices, @YvonneL99 . If you're concerned about your email getting to the inbox I'd also recommend looking into enabling email authentication. This is a way to help build a reputation as a trusted sender. This is more of a long term improvement where your reputation improves over time.


If you're experiencing a low open rate, there are a few additional things to consider:

  • Are people familiar with the company name that you're sending from? Is that the company they opted in to receive emails from? It sounds like they are based on what you said in the original post.
  • How long ago did you collect these addresses, and have you been keeping in touch before these marketing emails? You can expect a contact who opted in, say, 4 years ago to engage differently than a contact that opted in last week. Especially if they haven't heard from you in awhile. 
  • Do you offer waxing services to both women and men? Do you have enough clients in both groups that it would be worth separate emails where you could use different language in the subject line, or different images?
  • Considering how contacts are collected is important too. Someone that signed up directly through the store or directly at your website will be more likely to open vs. someone that signed up at an event to be entered in a contest, for example. If you haven't already, I'd recommend looking at some of our sign up tool offerings so that you can continue to grow your list with new interested contacts, because nobody should be turning down a free offer! 
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