Best 8 plugins to set up advanced email tracking for Outlook
Learn how to set up advanced email tracking for Outlook with the best 8 plugins recommended by the experts.
Outlook is the second most popular business Email Service Provider (ESP) and in 2018 reported its number of users at 400 million, which makes it the most used all-around ESP, right behind Gmail.
Now, if you’re one of those business professionals that have chosen Outlook as their primary email domain, you’ve probably already experienced the limitations and the missing analytics of the built-in email tracking that are available with other email programs.
But this shouldn’t stop you from using Outlook as there are many different tools, plugins, and add-ons that will empower your business emails with all the necessary options you need to track and improve their performance.
We call them Outlook Email Tracking Tools. And they are sales rep's most powerful ally when it comes to sending cold email outreach campaigns or marketing emails.
When you understand how people engage with your emails, you can better serve your prospects with the message they prefer to engage with and make it easy for customers to contact you.
That is why we believe that an email tracker for Outlook is one of the best investments you can make for your business.
What are Outlook email trackers?
Usually, when you hit send email from Microsoft Outlook you have no idea what happens afterward. Are your prospects opening your emails or ignoring them?
Are they clicking on the link you included inside? What device are they using? Which recipient does what?
Email tracking refers to any method of monitoring how your email recipients interact with the emails you send them. Native Microsoft Outlook features do not include robust email tracking capabilities - they require consent from your recipient.
But luckily, there are plenty of tech solutions to this problem. Outlook email trackers will send you read receipts and other information about prospect behavior, and some can integrate into your Customer Relationship Management tool to help you put that knowledge to use and optimize future emails.
How does email tracking work?
Easy, really. It relies on simple technology.
When sending a tracked email, an invisible image (a so-called tracking pixel) is inserted and sent together with your email. As soon as the recipient of your email opens the message in their email application, the application automatically loads the tracking pixel.
To do this, a request must be sent to the web server which stores the invisible image.
As the invisible tracking pixel is uniquely associated with your email, our web server can expect the email to have been opened, because only then the invisible image would have been requested.
Each time the tracking pixel is requested from our web server, Mailbutler stores the information about the request.
Check out our video for more info:
The 8 best email tracking tools for Outlook
To be able to compile this listicle while keeping our assessment unbiased on which tools are the ultimate best, we asked our community to share their opinion.
Here are the top eight best email tracking tools for Outlook in 2023.
1. Mailbutler (The all-in-one toolkit for your Outlook workflow)
I love being able to create templates and collaborate with my business partner. And having the ability to track your email and receive data is key for proper follow-up.
Alex Villasenor, Creative Director at Emerging Light Media.
Mailbutler integrates directly into your email client, Outlook, Gmail, or Apple Mail, and gives you insights into when, where, on which device, who and how many times your emails and links were opened using its email tracking feature.
The app will notify you in real-time that your email was successfully delivered.
Also, as soon as your recipient opens your sent email or clicks on the link you included inside, you’ll get a notification. You can always be certain of how your campaign is performing by getting important insights in real-time.
See when and how often your emails were opened, where your recipient was when they opened it, as well as which device they opened your message on.
Mailbutler Email Tracking fits right into your Outlook, directly alongside your inbox.
This means there’s no need to learn any new software to track your emails, receive read receipts, and get insights into your messages – you can get started quickly and easily.
Enable Link Tracking to see when and if important links were clicked. Once you have this insight, you can separate the recipients that didn’t open the link and follow up with them. Most clients, such as Outlook, don’t have a link tracking feature – but Mailbutler does!
I really love that if I mention that I am going to attach a document, I receive a warning if I try to send the email without attaching anything.
I also appreciate that I can respond to emails and set them to send at a later time, for instance when I am trying to catch up, without letting anyone know I am working at the time.
It's also very helpful to see if the person you sent the email to ever received it and/or opened it, it makes follow-ups much simpler.
Jasmine Brevik, Hospitality Director at Absolute Procurement
- Email and Link Tracking
- Email Signatures and Templates
- Send Later
You can try Mailbutler for free, or start with $4.95 per user per month for the Tracking plan. The most popular plan is Professional+ for $14.95 per user per month.
Yesware is a lot more expensive than Mailbutler and offers a comparable range of functions. It offers a set of tools enabling your sales team to track email outreach activity, rapidly test what does and doesn’t work, and share it with all team members to drive better results.
Their Outlook Add-On helps you track emails, measure performance, and connect with your prospects, all from your inbox, since all its features integrate into the Outlook workflow you’re already using.
You can use Yesware's email tracking software to determine which prospects are your hottest leads, receive notifications whenever prospects open your emails, or click on your links and follow up at the right moment.
“My Dashboard” shows weekly email performance at a glance: open rates, reply rates, engagement, and more.
Yesware for Outlook is compatible with Outlook Desktop 2016 or above, and Outlook on the Web with the latest version of Chrome, Edge, or Internet Explorer.
- Email Tracking
- Multichannel campaigns
- Attachment tracking
- Reporting & Analytics
- Meeting scheduler
- Salesforce Integration
Their most popular plan, Premium, is $45 per seat per month, but they also offer a free version with limited, basic capabilities so you can test the waters.
3. Cirrus Insight
“Thanks to Cirrus Insight, we now have 100% visibility into all of our Outlook email activities. With this software, we are able to track if and when recipients open our emails, whether they click on any links in the email, and if they open any attachments.
What's more, the tool sends out a notification to us when a customer engages with the email in a manner that indicates they are ready for a sales meeting.
Another benefit is their optimized email templates that have helped increase the efficiency and scalability of our email marketing activities. Team productivity has also improved as a result.
We've seen a 75% increase in the number of scheduled meetings with qualified leads since we began using the tool, as well as an increase in click-through rates.
These results are primarily due to using these optimized email templates, and knowing the right time to make a sales push for each individual customer.” Anonymous user
- Buyer Signals (email tracking + web visits, and activity history)
- Multichannel outreach and email templates
- Attachment tracking
- Calendar scheduling
- Salesforce Integration
Email tracking, link tracking, and web visitor tracking are all part of the Expert Plan, which is $29 per user per month, but billed annually.
4. Bananatag (now Staffbase)
Staffbase, previously Bananatag, is great for email tracking but the solution is focused on improving internal (employee email) communication.
There are a lot of benefits that come with using Staffbase for email tracking. For one, it can help to improve your email deliverability rates by making sure that your emails are properly routed and delivered to the right recipients.
Additionally, Staffbase can help you to better understand your email audience by providing detailed insights into who is opening and clicking through your messages.
This information can be extremely valuable in tailoring your future email campaigns for maximum effectiveness, which is where it serves us best.
Overall, there's a lot to like about using Staffbase for email tracking purposes - it's definitely worth considering if you're looking for ways to improve your email marketing efforts.
Annesha Basu CMO at Stand Up Paddle Boards Review
- Employee email and newsletter with drag & drop
- Multi-Channel Sharing
- Email tracking & analytics
Tailored plans and packages for your business needs. You can get a cost estimate on a call with their team.
5. Contact Monkey (sales email tracking)
This simple-to-use internal email solution plugs into your existing Outlook inbox, enabling you to create, send, track, and measure all of your emails. Using its dashboard analytics you can measure engagement levels without having to leave Outlook.
The email template builder plugs directly into Outlook so you can easily create beautiful responsive HTML emails using drag and drop.
An excellent solution for Sales teams, Contact Monkey's inbox sidebar is designed to help you close more deals and identify hot leads and opportunities.
Additionally, it offers Salesforce integration and advanced email tracking and analytics.
- Create: responsive HTML emails with a drag-and-drop email template builder
- Engage: gather feedback with pulse surveys, emoji reactions, eNPS, anonymous comments, and star ratings
- Send: Integrate with Outlook for Windows, Outlook for Mac to send customized, responsive emails from your inbox
- Measure: Track email performance by tracking opens, clicks, survey responses, locations, and more
Price on request.
6. Saleshandy (Outlook plugin)
SalesHandy is a sales enablement and engagement solution provider that offers a range of amazing services to help businesses boost sales productivity.
After using SalesHandy, we realized that Email Tracking is one of these services, and it allows you to monitor what happens to your email after you send it.
It also comes with an Outlook plugin that integrates the feature directly into Outlook, so you don't have to leave your email client to see all of the tracking data.
SalesHandy Outlook add-in currently supports Windows versions 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2015 (both 32-bit and 64-bit versions), as well as your Office 365 work account.
To use SalesHandy's email monitoring service, you'll need to create an account and choose one of four plans, just like with other providers.
Matt Weidle, Business Development Manager at Buyer's Guide
- Email opened notification
- Email open rate
- Individual link tracking
- Track email replies
- Email templates
- Automated follow-ups
The Regular plan for individuals starts at $12/month/user, and the Plus plan for growing teams is $27/month/user, plus an add-on service for verifying 30,000 emails for the price of $59.
7. Boomerang for Outlook
Boomerang for Outlook is an economical and simple email tracking software that comes at a low or no cost. Boomerang's free basic account includes plenty of technical capabilities, such as response tracking, read receipts, and click tracking.
While the functionality is comparable to competitors, the cheaper cost results in a less streamlined user experience, which may cause complications.
This application is ideal for individuals searching for a straightforward method of optimizing their email marketing effort.
Tiffany Payne, Head of Marketing at Replace Your Docs
- Inbox Pause for increased productivity
- Intelligent: write perfect emails with AI
- Calendar scheduling with a visual calendar grid embedded into an email
- Get notified if a recipient doesn't respond
- Email tracking and reporting
Free basic version (very limited), Pro plan with unlimited access to all features starts at $14.99/month, but is billed annually.
8. BenchmarkONE (Outlook add-in)
Benchmark is an excellent email software for marketing automation. It's great for creating visually appealing templates, sending mass emails, and setting up automation. It's likely to have everything you need to launch email marketing campaigns.
The add-in also includes a comprehensive collection of tools for tracking and optimizing your performance.
You can use A/B testing to test different content and preview your emails before they are sent, in addition to the normal statistics regarding email opens, clicks, and bounces.
Benchmark also offers a substantial free plan that allows you to send up to 2,000 contacts or 14,000 emails on a monthly basis for no further cost.
Tanner Arnold - President & CEO at Revelation Machinery
- Basic reporting
- Building and personalizing emails
- Sending outbound emails
- Manage email deliverability
- Automated email responses
- Mobile optimized
- Free Forever: 1 user, 500 contacts, 1,000 emails per month
- Core: Starting at $69.00 per month
- Enterprise: Starting at $179.00 per month
What is the best email tracker for Outlook?
The absolute best email tracker for Outlook is Mailbutler. Mailbutler is an email extension that integrates directly into your Outlook inbox, meaning you don’t have to familiarize yourself with any new email tracking software program to start using it.
Mailbutler comes with a powerful set of features, including advanced email tracking. Thanks to this feature, you’ll receive read receipts on your emails in real-time.
In addition to when, Mailbutler also provides you with information on where and how many times your emails and links have been opened.
All of these valuable insights into your email recipients’ behavior will help you up your follow-up game and improve your daily email communication.
Is there a way to track emails in Outlook?
Yes, there is. Well, kind of. Outlook allows you to request a delivery or read receipt before you send an email. This means the recipient has the freedom to choose whether or not to send you the requested receipt.
Fortunately, there are many more effective ways to track your emails in Outlook. Third-party tools can save the day here.
There are many reliable email extensions and plugins that enable you to track your emails in Outlook.
Mailbutler is the best option currently on the market as it integrates directly into your Outlook inbox and is extremely easy to use.
With Mailbutler in place, you’ll be able to see in real-time when, where, and how many times your recipients have opened your emails.
What is the best free email tracker?
Mailbutler is the best email tracker for Outlook, Gmail, and Apple Mail available on the market right now.
It offers a 14-day free trial with guaranteed privacy and no credit card information requirement. The trial includes all of Mailbutler's feature, including:
- Email and link tracking
- Intelligent email scheduling
- Customizable email signatures
And many more! Take advantage of Mailbutler's 14-day free trial to try out all of Mailbutler’s premium features and see whether you can benefit from them or not.
Can you get email analytics in Outlook?
Outlook email analytics can be beneficial for understanding your email behaviors and productivity patterns. However, Microsoft's Outlook application does not have built-in email analytics. There are several tools available that can help you access email analytics for Outlook. Some of the best options include: Mailbutler, Cirrus Insight, Saleshandy, and BenchmarkONE.
How do I turn on Outlook analytics?
There are third-party tools available that provide Outlook email analytics. These tools usually come in the form of add-ins that you would need to install and configure within Outlook. Always ensure any third-party tools you use are from trusted sources, comply with your company's data policies, and have appropriate security measures in place.
Some final thoughts
Tracking email performance is an important aspect of any business strategy because it enables you to take action based on hard data. That’s why having the right email tracking software for your Outlook account is a crucial factor in your success.
However, it’s not the only thing you should consider when attempting to improve your reply and conversion rate.
Writing engaging emails and personalizing your efforts to tailor each email to the recipient is up to you.
For example, if you have a campaign that isn’t doing well when it comes to conversions, there could be any number of reasons behind your problem.
Here are some tips to increase the conversion rate of your business emails.
- Lead list segmentation: segment your email recipients into meaningful groups based on similar characteristics and create a template that resonates with their specific needs and interest
- Use email personalization to draw your prospects in and improve your reply rates
- Create subject lines that spark interest
- Send a video through email to attract their attention and increase conversion rates
- Optimize your campaigns for mobile devices
And when it comes to writing a sales email that gets replies, follow this link that acts as a cheat sheet for SDRs when writing a sales email. Happy emailing!
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