Gmail Image Improvements Could Mean Changes for Email Marketers

email-imageGoogle yesterday announced that Gmail will now serve all images through the search engine’s secure proxy servers, a change that could have both a positive and a negative impact on email marketers.

A Marketing Land article about the update states “Google has confirmed…that the change will not harm open rate data. [In fact] it may improve open rate tracking because marketers won’t have to rely on the user both opening the email and loading the images.” Email vendors such as Aweber and MailChimp have also indicated that the update may lead to increased email open rates, a significant advantage for email marketers considering Gmail has more than 425 million users.

However, with Google reportedly making Gmail messages more “safe and secure” via the new improvements, email marketers will have to forego information about the user (i.e., IP address, user agent, whether it was a mobile open, and which mobile device was used). “That’s bad news for brands and email marketers,” says Marketing Land, citing significant mobile growth this year.

Marketing Land claims it will continue to look for clarity on the change that began yesterday for desktop Gmail users and will take effect for Gmail mobile apps after the near year.

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Scott Stone — Scott Stone, Advertising & E-Business Manager, Cisco Eagle

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