What Technology is Being Used When You Are Sented an Email Saying You Can Track?

September 11, 2023
David Sunnyside

Email tracking is a powerful tool that allows you to monitor how your emails are received. It’s a way of knowing whether your emails have been opened and read by the recipients, as well as providing information about who is clicking on your links, attachments and more.

But what is the technology that’s being used when you are sent an email saying you can track? There are 3 main technologies that can be used in email tracking: read receipts, tracking pixels and trackable links. Read receipts are an easy opt-in email tracking method that provides the sender with a notification whenever the recipient opens their email. However, because the recipient must expressly authorize the sending of the read receipt, this method is not reliable as an indication of actual email engagement.

Tracking pixels are tiny snippets of code that the tracking server loads when someone opens an email, in order to gather data about the recipient’s interaction with your emails. However, as with cookies, recipients can block tracking pixels by using pixel blocking tools such as PixelBlock and Email Privacy Protector. This makes relying on this method of tracking email engagement problematic.

The most accurate way to track email engagement is through the use of trackable links, which are URLs that contain a unique code that can be deciphered by an email tracking tool when clicked on. The tool can then report back to the sender on a range of metrics such as who clicked on the link, when they clicked it, what web browser was used and more.

David Sunnyside
Co-founder of Urban Splatter • Digital Marketer • Engineer • Meditator
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