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Results of gmail tabs on open rates

Earlier this summer Gmail launched their newest inbox feature - tabs. This new layout allows users to automatically filter incoming emails into various groups like Primary, Social, and Promotions. Similar to tabbed folders in a file cabinet.

For users who have enabled this new feature, Gmail will automatically filter blast emails from groups like Progress Texas to the Promotions tab.

TIP: If you have tabs enabled and want to make sure you are not missing critical emails from Progress Texas, make sure to click and drag emails from us over from “Promotions” to “Primary” to ensure their delivery.

So why is this important?

Most organizations have a significant number of subscribers using gmail accounts - at Progress Texas that number is more than 30% and rising every year. Which inbox a message is filtered to could impact open rates.

We ran an internal test to see if their has been a difference in open rates since the launch of Gmail tabs. The results are as follows:

Gmail Open Rates Prior to Launch of Tabs: 1/1/13 to 6/4/13 = 22.57%

Gmail Open Rates After Launch of Tabs: 6/5/2013 to 7/31/13 = 21.82%

Gmail Open Rates

RESULT: Gmail tabs accounted for a 3.3% drop in open rates. Nothing to be alarmed by, but something worth keeping an eye on.

SOLUTION: The only immediate solution we can suggest is for you to ask your subscribers to move your emails to their primary inbox. But separate from that, there isn't much you can do. The good news is that this minor drop is nothing to be overly alarmed by - but it is something worth keeping an eye on.

Earlier this summer, blast email provider MailChimp conducted a similar study looking at over 12.5 billion emails - they found similar results.