Email Tracking/reporting

Hi,

I want to create some kind of reporting to track statistics on email opens etc.
Hi can i do this and is there any reporting software i could use?


Cheers
coolispaulAsked:
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dineeshCommented:
HI,

You will have to use a email campaign platform for that - such as icontact.com

else you need to include a tracking script in all your mails and have a backend  to record them.. too tedious..

regards
Dinesh
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coolispaulAuthor Commented:
hi

yeah thats the problem - i have delivery software already but it has no reporting.

So i want to add reporting to it, whether it be add my own script or bolt on a bit of reporting software.

I read that you can target a script through an image i.e. <img src="track.php?id=this@email.com" />
How doe sthis work though? - the source of the image isnt really valid - what will show and why will the track.php script be called?

Cheers

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Dave HoweSoftware and Hardware EngineerCommented:
you can do that, although a lot of sites will block it - that is what is commonly called a "web bug" and will show in the webserver logfile of whichever server is hosting track.php
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coolispaulAuthor Commented:
ok thanks.

so  how do the email marketing sites generate reports etc? how do they get hold of the statistics/data without being blocked using the idea above

Thanks
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Dave HoweSoftware and Hardware EngineerCommented:
they don't.

Ok, obviously, they do, but most use a combination of methods - they set delivery notification, they process bounces (and assume any mail not "bounced" was delivered, or some proportion thereof) and check webbugs. Consider the following compound test:

Delivery check. For each email:
set delivered=0.75, set viewed=0
Was a bounce received for this? if so, set delivered=0
Was a Delivery report received? (if so, set delivered=1)
Was a "read" report received? (if so, set delivered=1 and viewed=1)
Was a web-bug report seen in the server logs? (if so, set delivered=1 and Viewed=1)
add delivered and viewed to the respective totals, and move on to next mail.

this gives a fairly accurate count - it assumes that 1/4 of the mails for which no bounce was received were in fact bounced, unless there is a reason to know it *was* received, and keeps a count of how many we know for certain were viewed.
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