Why Customers Go Inactive

You send your monthly newsletter to a 2,000 recipient contact list.  200 (or 10%) of the recipients do not open your email.  Why?

First, how old is your list?  If your list has not been updated in the last three years, you run the risk of sending to stale email addresses.  Some of your recipients could have changed their emails due to jobs, relocation and/or preference.

Do you have a welcome program to engage new subscribers immediately?  Let new customers know they are important by offering valuable content and promotions continually and you will have committed and engaged readers.

Are you targeting your messages depending on the recipient?  Don’t just send a generic message. Segment your list by product use, opens and clicks (or vice versa), or by new versus old customers. Create messages catered to each.

How strong is your inbox presence?  Is your subject line general or specific?  When it is specific and presents an offer to the recipient, you have a greater chance of getting your email read.

How often do you send email campaigns?  Are they too frequent?  Not frequent enough?  You know your audience best. Figure out the best day, time and frequency to send emails by testing it.

Do you have a variety or messages or are you recycling the same messages over and over again?  New content invokes new interest.

Stay tuned for ways to reawaken inactive customers…

Until then, share your thoughts and ideas on why you think customers go inactive.

9 Responses to “Why Customers Go Inactive”

  1. I have a couple of questions since I am relatively new to the email marketing world.
    1. Is there an average attrition rate? i.e. 20% per year?

    2. For B2B emailing, what are the guidelines as to frequency?

    • Ted,

      Great questions.

      1. According Econsultancy.com’s Email Marketing Statistics unsubscribe rates average to around .17% per month. If you reach .50% per month you need to rethink your e-marketing strategy. I discuss ways to combat this number in yesterday’s post – Reawakening Inactive Customers https://swiftpage.wordpress.com/2010/06/16/reawakening-inactive-customers/

      2. Frequency completely depends on your audience. With B2B marketing you need to air on the side of lower frequency, but the key is to provide valuable and targeted content that engages your recipients. Test the frequency and best days and times to send by segmenting your list and trying out different methods. You will be able to see what works best through the results each email produces.

  2. why can’t I get to your website? It appears to be down.

  3. Thanks for your responses to my questions and yesterdays blog. This is all very good information. At least for me. I’m going to try a survey in my next email campaign.

  4. Good points. I wrote an article for my company blog called “Why Consumers Unsubscribe”. I know these are important points.


  1. Reawakening Inactive Customers « Swiftpage Email Marketing blog - June 16, 2010

    […] Inactive Customers By Annie Cooley Monday’s post discussed why customers go inactive.  Today I want to explore the ways you can reawaken them and […]

  2. Get Em’ Back: Reengaging Inactive Subscribers – Guest Post on the Sage ACT! Journal | Swiftpage Marketing Blog - March 28, 2012

    […] may also want to check out our post Reawakening Inactive Customers and read more about why customers go inactive. Share this:Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Deliverability, Email Strategy, Small […]

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