Are there any limitations to Email Analytics?
There are some known, minor limitations to Litmus' Email Analytics. These are detailed below.
Since we rely upon an image loading, we aren't able to track recipients who do not enable images for your email. Email Analytics is a way to break down your open rate—to give you further insight into your recipients who did open your message. Some email clients block external images, or are not capable of displaying HTML email. That includes non-current models of BlackBerry, and other older mobile devices unable to view HTML email. As a result these are not tracked and do not appear in your reports.
Gmail, Yahoo!, and AOL
Email accounts for these providers cache images for emails viewed on the web and on mobile apps—and image caching impacts the way Email Analytics reports webmail and mobile app opens. Since August 2018, both Yahoo! Mail and AOL have been processed by the same backend servers, and we can no longer distinguish between them. That’s why both AOL and Yahoo! opens will report as Yahoo!/AOL going forward. We have comprehensive articles explaining how Gmail and Yahoo! handle opens.
Outlook print and forward detection
This impacts all versions of Outlook from 2007 to 2019. Because of a bug in the way Outlook processes documents before printing them, it is not currently possible to detect an Outlook print. Forward tracking is also not supported for a similar reason. Before an email is forwarded, Outlook will strip out the forward-tracking Email Analytics HTML.
Lotus Notes via Domino
Certain configurations of Lotus Notes, specifically more recent versions configured to retrieve email from a Domino server, appear identical to Outlook 2003. In these cases, Email Analytics will identify the Lotus Notes client as Outlook 2003, but it's worth noting that if a Lotus Notes client appears as Outlook 2003, that also means it will render identically to Outlook 2003. So if your email is compatible with Outlook 2003, it will be compatible with this particular configuration of Lotus Notes.
Entourage 2008, Outlook for Mac 2011 and 2016
Since Entourage 2008, Microsoft have begun embedding the Apple Mail (WebKit) rendering engine within their email client. As a result, these clients render identically and will appear under "Apple Mail" within Email Analytics.
Webmail, 'Other' category opens, and Entourage 2004 engagement tracking
Web based email clients (Gmail, Outlook.com, and Yahoo! Mail) use an asynchronous processing model that will continue to load an email even after you've closed it and moved on to another message in your inbox. As a result we are unable to detect when the user stops viewing the email like we can in other clients. We exclude the engagement of Gmail, Outlook.com, Yahoo! Mail, and AOL Mail users from our engagement reports, to avoid reducing the accuracy of the report.
A similar issue applies to Lotus Notes 6.0 (only this specific version due to a bug that was later fixed), and Entourage 2004. These clients will record opens, prints and forwards, but not engagement.
' Other' category clients cannot be tracked for engagement, and will be excluded from the engagement report.
Entourage 2004 print tracking
Due to a rendering engine limitation, we do not support tracking prints in Entourage 2004. Forward tracking is fully supported.
Yahoo! Mail, AOL Mail, Outlook.com print/forward tracking
We currently cannot track prints or forwards for these clients at this time.
GMX print tracking
GMX webmail has an attachment preloader when prints are made, which Email Analytics does not support. We do not support print tracking made from this webmail client.
We are unable to reliably track Lotus Notes opens. We have disabled all tracking for the Lotus Notes 6 client due to a problem with this version of the Notes client requesting the tracking images hundreds of times for each subscriber open made. Additionally, we cannot identify Notes 7 or 8 opens. These versions of Notes do not send a unique user agent or referrer so they are not distinguishable from other clients.