Open and click rates are an important metric for measuring email marketing performance. These metrics have become less reliable over the past year because the industry has experienced a dramatic increase in bot activity. Bot activity has negatively impacted reporting, unsubscribe rates, engagement and lead scoring, and marketing automation results. To address this, Delivra has implemented a proactive approach for identifying and removing bot clicks before they have a chance to impact the marketing program.
What is bot activity?
Bot activity is a click that is not performed by an actual person. As an example, email security bots will perform clicks on most (if not all) links within an email to ensure there is not harmful activity contained within the email.
How does bot activity affect my analytics and reporting?
Because bots click on most (if not all) links within an email, email marketing metrics will be inflated. Customers can no longer rely on open and clickthrough rates to gauge the effectiveness of their email marketing program.
How does bot activity affect my subscribers?
If your email footer contains a one-click unsubscribe link, a bot will unsubscribe the contact when it clicks on the link. In this situation, customers will experience higher than expected unsubscribe rates.
How does bot activity affect my contact engagement and mailing engagement?
Because bots click on most (if not all) links within an email, bot activity will inflate your engagement numbers. Your purchases/conversions will not be inflated, however. This can be considered problematic if you have a high engagement with comparatively low purchases/conversions.
How does bot activity affect my lead scoring?
Lead scoring can be based on open and click activity. Because bots click on most (if not all) links within an email, this can result in leads being scored incorrectly. As an example, bot activity could transition a “cold lead” to a “hot lead” - and this could trigger activity by your sales team.
How does bot activity affect my marketing automation rules?
Marketing automation rules can be set up to evaluate open and click behavior when determining the next step in the automation. Because bots click on most (if not all) links within an email, the bot activity could easily transition your contact down an automation path that does not match his/her interest.
What is Delivra doing to address bot activity?
Delivra has chosen to address this issue by proactively removing bot clicks when they are detected. This approach improves the accuracy of your email marketing metrics without requiring you to identify and manually remove the bot activity from reporting.
What are other products doing to address bot activity?
Most email service providers are not addressing bot activity. Those offering a solution are putting the responsibility on their users to identify bot clicks and manually remove them from reporting.
Why is Delivra’s approach better compared to other products?
Delivra uses a highly effective statistical approach to proactively identify bot clicks. Other products require marketers to evaluate IP addresses and the timing of clicks to determine if the click was performed by a human or a bot. Most marketers simply don’t have time to perform this analysis, and are providing inaccurate email marketing metrics to their customers.
How do I know bot activity was occurring?
You can review your clickthrough activity prior to January 2020. Bot activity is readily apparent if you see, for the same contact, multiple IP addresses clicking on the links in an email. Another telltale sign is rapid clicks occurring faster than a human can perform them.