The big 4 webmail services are Yahoo! Mail, Gmail, AOL and Hotmail and while their users should generally behave in the same manner there are subtle differences that a marketer should be aware of. The most obvious one is that Hotmail is used by more home users and I would think a younger audience versus Gmail which is used by a lot of business people.
MailChimp, an email distribution service studied success metrics for marketing e-mails sent through these 4 services showed that Gmail users were most likely to open and click on e-mails. Another important metric, open rate, varied from a low of just over 20% for e-mail sent to AOL users to a high over nearly 31% among Gmail users. The click rate, or the number of times users clicked on links on e-mails sent to Gmail accounts was more than 7.4%, compared with rates between 4% and 5% for Yahoo!, AOL and Hotmail users.
Yahoo! Mail -24.5 %
Hotmail – 63.5 million
Yahoo! Mail – 54.8 million
AOL – 28.8 million
Gmail – 29 million
According to comScore, Gmail is the third-most-popular e-mail property among US Internet users, though it posted the highest growth rate between July 2008 and July 2009. Unique visitors to the service rose 46% to nearly 37 million.
Top Email Properties (thousands)
Yahoo!Mail – 87,224 (2008) 106,166 (2009) Up 22%
Windows Live Hotmail – 45,886 (2008) 47,115 (2009) Up 3%
Gmail – 25,304 (2008) 36,959 (2009) Up 46%
AOL – 45,111 (2008) 36,407 (2009) Down -19%
If you enjoyed this article and don’t want to miss the next one click here to get my marketing posts by email as soon as they are published. You will be prompted for an email address and you are set to go.