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Most of the conversations that marketers have been having about mobile email revolve around the end product – does it look and function properly on a mobile device?

It’s a crucial question, after all. Adestra’s own study of consumer adoption and attitudes around email found that readers will delete a message that doesn’t look right on their phone, or that doesn’t render properly.

But beyond having mobile-optimized (or “mobile-first” as some say) email, or whether you use responsive design or adaptive to make your messages look good, how are you reporting on your mobile email to your executives?

Sure, you have opens, clicks and conversions to indicate what you’re doing, but now your reporting is going to be split between mobile opens, clicks and sales. How will you differentiate between them?

First things first, talk to your provider to make sure you can break out mobile from desktop results. Then, decide how you’re going to break it out in your own reporting. You have to tell the story, so you have to find a way to make it compelling and understandable to your chief executive.

Here are three tips to do just that:

1. Get your metrics together.

I have talked about email marketer stats and KPIs above, but the stats/KPIs that your executives care about can be a little different. These are the top-level numbers, like acquisitions and conversions.

On the email marketer level, you need to track what devices your customers are using to read your messages, what the most popular devices and operating systems and browsers are, and what the sales are through those devices. Today’s data configurations let you get extremely granular in this respect.

If you’re not sure which metrics to report, ask them what they want to see. Some execs might want to emphasize a certain category of stats over others. Some are straight bottom line people; others will want to see numbers that reflect activity further back in the funnel.

Ask other teams, too. Go to your website analytics people, and ask what they report. They might have good insight about what your executives want to see. Also, try to mirror what they report and see whether their stats on traffic and conversions align to what you’re seeing in email.


2. Educate your execs on why these statistics are important.

Don’t just list your metrics or KPIs. Explain what they mean, why you included them and what they indicate about the health of your email marketing program.

I can’t overemphasize this aspect of reporting. You don’t want to spring new reporting numbers on your execs because that creates questions and problems. Educating them on metrics that matter will help you down the road when you want to adopt new programs.

Remember that your executive team will measure you by the statistics you include in your report. In other words, if you display it, you’ll be measured on it. You might think mobile is not a component of your management statistics, but you’ll track them on your email marketer stats to see whether mobile open, click and engagement leads to higher average sales, or moves your customers closer to a sale, or has a higher conversion rate.

Even if your web team doesn’t report these metrics, consider adding stats that show the top three or four devices your customers are using to read your emails. You’ll probably have to educate your executives to understand that “mobile device” doesn’t mean just smartphones but also tablets and e-readers. This could be compelling information, so use your good judgment.

You can get as deep and wide as you want, but you have to determine what you want to do with this information. Don’t gather stats that have no impact on anything.

Mobile Reporting Metrics

3. Give your reports to your developers.

These are the people who are designing your emails and templates. They should know what you’re seeing so they can understand what’s happening. Should they design for an Android phone first and then for an iPhone or the other way around? Use your intel to drive your program forward.

Think about attribution too: Our societal addiction to mobile access to information and email should translate into statistics that show a clear differentiation between mobile and desktop. As we get more granular, we’ll look at attribution among different media. It’s good to start thinking about this even if you don’t do it today.

Ultimately, realize that the reporting is out there. Know what you have and what you need to do to measure yourself so you know you’re growing. Then report that growth to your execs so they can understand your progress.