Benchmark Email is known for its great user interface which is simple to use.
Often, when a tool is designed to be simple to use, it’s because it’s been stripped down, and you can end up missing out on important data.
But is that the case with Benchmark?
To make sure Benchmark can give you all the data you need as a marketer, I decided to take a close look at what analytics it offers.
If you’re interested in learning about what else Benchmark has to offer, see my detailed review. Or if you want to check out its competition, make sure you take a look at the best email marketing services in 2021.
An Overview of Benchmark Email’s Analytics
Benchmark Email has some of the most thorough email analytics I’ve come across.
It has all the essentials for an email marketer, plus a few extra features. The only area I think needs improvement is the look of the downloadable reports. We’ll examine them in detail soon.
In your Benchmark Email account, there’s a “reports” section on the sidebar that can be expanded to reveal six different types of reports.
Briefly, here’s what you’ll find in each report:
- Email reports: A detailed breakdown of any individual email you’ve sent.
- Automation reports: An overview of analytics for automation campaigns you’ve created.
- AB test reports: An overview of the results of any split-tests you’ve run.
- Complaint reports: A summary of any complaints made by your email recipients.
- Survey and Poll reports: The responses to surveys or polls that you’ve made.
You’ll primarily use the first three, so let’s take a closer look at them.
The email reports section starts with a summary of all your emails. You can click any individual one to access a detailed email report.
There are four main sections to any email report, starting with the Overview section. This is a fairly detailed overview, starting with the basic overall performance of the email:
- The number of emails sent
- Link clicks
If you scroll down the page, you can also see whether there were any abuse complaints or forwards.
Not many email marketing tools track forwards, and this can be valuable if you’re trying to grow your email list through your existing contacts. You’ll be able to see which messages spread the best.
Finally, there’s a nice hourly performance graph, which will be important later on, when you’re trying to optimize your send time.
Below the Overview section, there are three additional sections you can navigate to using the panel on the left side of the report.
The Link Performance section gives you a summary of how many times each link in an email was clicked. The Geolocation section shows you a highlighted map of where your email opens came from.
The most interesting section is the Activity Details section.
Here, you can see which contacts took (or didn’t take) an action. You can look at:
- Abuse complaints
You can save any individual list of contacts to a new list. For example, you can add people who didn’t open emails to an “inactive” list and try to target them with different emails.
Finally, on the main “Email Report” screen, you can also select and compare email reports against each other.
You can view the results as a table of numbers, or a graph like the one above.
It will show you:
- Abuse complaints
You can download reports as either PDFs or Excel files.
The Excel reports are nothing too pretty; they’re just a plain spreadsheet with the data:
The PDF reports look a bit nicer:
If you have to send a report to a client, the PDF might be okay. But you’re probably better off just saving the web version of the reports page that has nice graphs on it.
This is where you’ll see the results of any workflows you’ve made.
Initially, you’ll see all your campaigns side-by-side, showing you whether or not each is active.
The real data comes in the “Summary” that you can get for each campaign by clicking on it:
In the campaign report, you’ll see a summary of all the emails in that campaign.
- Total Recipients
- Total Opens
- Total Clicks
- Total Bounces
- Total Unsubscribe
That’s not quite as much detail as the individual email reports, but the campaign report has all the essentials.
If you do want the extra data (e.g., email forwards, activity report), you can click on any email in that summary, and you’ll get a detailed report with everything above, and more.
A/B Test Reports
The A/B Test Reports section is an overview of all the A/B tests you’ve run.
You can click on any individual test to get a complete summary:
In addition to the main differences in the emails you sent (e.g., subject line, from name, or whatever you tested), you’ll also see the main performance stats of each email compared alongside each other:
- Emails sent
Again, you can click on an individual email variation to get a more detailed email report with additional data.
How to Use this Data to Improve Your Email Marketing
There are two main ways these reports can improve your marketing effectiveness.
The A/B Testing Report will let you identify the best email to send. This helps maximize your opens and clicks for that specific email. More importantly, this data will help you take away lessons about what works best with your subscribers, which will benefit you over time.
But the big win from these reports is being able to create sub-lists of subscribers based on the results.
The detailed activity reports give you a list of subscribers who have or haven’t performed an action. These can be saved as a new list.
This opens up possibilities like sending an email to gauge interest in a product, and then saving the engaged subscribers (who opened or clicked on a link) in a new list. You can send follow-up information to that new list, without annoying other subscribers not interested in that particular offer.
Note that you can create more detailed segments in the “Contacts” section of your account, but these quick sub-lists will save you time.
Is Benchmark Email’s Analytics Good Enough for You?
The report interfaces themselves are simple to use and beautiful.
All the essential metrics that I can possibly think of are included, and there are a few extras that not many other email marketing tools offer.
The only potential issue you might have is with the downloadable reports.
However, if you’re convinced that Benchmark Email gives you the data you’ll need, you can read my detailed review to see what other features it offers. If you’re not convinced yet, don’t forget to look at our list of the best email marketing services in 2021.