Hi MDR,

Like you, we see promotional/marketing email achieve much lower inbox
placement rates at Outlook compared to other ISPs like Gmail, Yahoo! and
AOL. Even from responsible senders.

At EmailGrades we analyze billions of data points a month using panel data
for ESP-wide performance analysis and benchmarking. It's a large sample.
Outlook is clearly treating email differently than Gmail, Yahoo! and AOL --
but that might not be a bad thing.

My metrics suggest that Outlook has found a way to keep *read* rates in
line with Gmail and Yahoo! even though Outlook moves a greater proportion
of mail out of the Inbox into the spam folder. It seems they've found a way
to identify mail that's less relevant to each recipient and keep it out of
the recipient's inbox. Nothing's perfect, so I'm sure there's some
collateral damage, but... if Microsoft's filters were aggressively moving
heaps of *wanted* email out of the inbox, I'd expect Outlook's read rates
to be lower, but my metrics show that read rates at Outlook are often in
line with read rates at Gmail and Yahoo!

Image attached -- to show how an ESP's overall read rates at Outlook are
similar to read rates at Gmail and Yahoo! -- even though this same ESP's
inbox placement is far lower at Outlook (55-65%) than Gmail and Yahoo!
(~80%).

(I'm probably measuring read rates differently than you. I use IMAP's
"message read" flag, not an open tracking pixel or click-tracking link.)

Cheers,
Paul Kincaid-Smith

On Wed, Jun 13, 2018 at 9:20 AM, Michael Rathbun <m...@honet.com> wrote:

> We have a product, GreenArrow Monitor, that is a fairly standard inbox rate
> monitoring tool.  Senders incorporate the Monitor seed list, our robot
> collects and collates the data, users see the results, merriment may or may
> not ensue.
>
> Recently we had occasion to investigate weirdness in Hotmail stats.  We
> would
> expect, for any campaign, given identical messages and uniform rules, they
> should all go to the inbox or all to the bulk folder.  Additionally, if
> there
> is zero inbox delivery, the open stats should be miserable.
>
> What we have been seeing is fractional inbox rates (45%?) and cases where
> the
> reported inbox rate was zero but the unique opens were at 40%.
>
> What we found was that each seed account had extensive safe- and
> blocked-sender lists.  These differed between accounts.  Since the accounts
> have no human users, this is unexpected.
>
> Checking my own outlook.com account, used for investigating individual
> client
> problems, I see unsolicited entries in the safe-sender list.
>
> I begin to formulate a plausible hypothesis that explains why so many of my
> clients see comparativey dismal open rates for their fully AUP-compliant
> email
> at hotmail, whilst seeing excellent response rates elsewhere.
>
> Anyone have insights on this?
>
> mdr
> --
> We must not confuse statistical probability with some transcendental
> and utterly compelling force.
>   -- Unspiek, Baron Bodissey (Life, Volume II)
>
>
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