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Show your newsletter stats! (End of July 2020)

Kristian Freeman
Kristian Freeman

Every newsletter has the same basic stats: open rate, click rate, and number of subscribers.

Without context, these numbers are pretty meaningless. An email goes out and 30% of the people who receive it end up opening it. Is that above average? Below average?

Factoring in the kind of newsletter - a weekly resource roundup, or an infrequent blog-post-as-email - your numbers might feel low, but if you were able to see stats from other newsletters, you could get a better sense of how your newsletter is doing and what to focus on.

So, show your stats! Every month, I'm going to share the stats for Bytesized Weekly, as well as what I'm doing to improve things like open rate, click rate, and number of subscribers.

If you're interested in joining the trend, tweet at @MListHackers (#showyourstats) and join us in the Mailing List Hackers Discord to let us know what your newsletter is and how it's doing!

Newsletter: Bytesized Weekly
What is it: a weekly newsletter rounding up new and interesting things in software development
Number of subscribers: 4391
Average open rate: 47.23%
Average click rate: 9.79%
Number of emails sent: 128k

What I'm doing this month (August 2020):

Preparing for Byteconf Flutter, a free remote Flutter conference. A lot of the subscribers to Bytesized Weekly come from these recurring events (~4 a year), so my growth rate in terms of number of subscribers is probably going to reach a high point in the next few weeks.

Thinking about unsubscribes. ~20 people are unsubscribing per weekly email. A ton of people are subscribing to stay up-to-date with our conferences, and it's very likely that they just aren't getting value from the weekly emails. I'd like to spend some time this month digging into how I can provide more value to those people!

Purging inactive readers. From a practical level, I'm in a ConvertKit tier paying more than I need to, considering that my actual # of reading or active subscribers is probably closer to 2000 (47% opens for 4400 subscribers). I'll likely follow Brennan Dunn's strategies for list purging in Mastering ConvertKit, and I'd like to do a write-up for Mailing List Hackers as I walk through the process.

I'm personally super interested in learning about everyone else's newsletter stats, and in particular, if you're building a weekly roundup (especially around software dev) I'm excited to hear about how your newsletter is doing!


Kristian Freeman

I'm a programmer and writer — I also founded Mailing List Hackers! I love to teach, write, and make stuff online.