How to Tell If Someone Has Opened and Read Your Email

Have you ever found yourself in this situation? You send an email, you wait for a reply, and after a few days, still, no response comes through. And now you’re wondering whether your recipient got your message, or they were just not interested.

Is there a way of knowing if your recipient received your email?

Fortunately, they are two methods to find out.

1. Requesting a return receipt
2. Get an email tracking tool.

The pros and cons of using email tracking and return receipt

There are pros and tracking emails in business.

Advantages of tracking emails

  1. You get to know who is reading your email content
  2. You can improve your emails based on the feedback you get, to send customized emails.
  3. You can improve your IP address and email deliverability by removing people who don’t respond to any of your emails.

Disadvantages of tracking emails

  1. In some email platforms, a recipient can decline the email return receipt request, so you’re not sure you’ll get a receipt even after requesting one.
  2. Not all email services support the receipt feature
  3. Some recipients see it as an invasion of privacy

How to tell If the recipient read your email in Outlook

Outlook offers two options for returning a receipt.
1. Receipt when delivered
2. Receipt when read
With the first option, you’ll only receive a receipt when a message is delivered. Although, this just means the message is just sitting unread in someone’s inbox, it’s still important in the tracking process. To know whether or not the email has been read, go for the second option.
To access the return receipt feature in outlook, click options on the main menu as you compose your message.

How to tell If the recipient read your email in Outlook

If you only want to know when your message is delivered, request a delivery receipt. And if you want a notification after the receiver reads the message, request for a read receipt. It’s possible to request both.

If you select the request for a read receipt, the receiver will be prompted to send a message after they open the message, if they respond yes to the notification, you get a read receipt.

How to tell if the recipient read your email in Gmail

It’s worthwhile to note that the free version of Gmail does not have the feature. It’s only accessible through GSuite Gmail.

To utilize the return receipt feature in GSuite Gmail, you’ve got to enable it first.
To activate the feature, visit your GSuite Admin Console. Click Apps > GSuite > Settings for Gmail > Advanced settings. On the advanced settings options, choose the email read option.

How to tell if the recipient read your email in Gmail

When the option is on, the receiver will be prompted to send a receipt immediately when they open the message.
Note that the option will only work for the messages sent after the feature is enabled.

Use an email tracking option

If you’re a business owner or you’re running a research, the two options might not be very convenient for you.

You might consider investing in a third-party email tracking solution. Although most email tracking tools have a monthly subscription, you can also try some free basic plans. The apps will offer more information than the read receipts. You’ll get a notification when the recipient opens your email, reads it or clicks on the link or attachments in your email, as well as when the email bounces.

Take Away
Whether we are sending an email for personal or business purposes, you want to know if your email was read ( even if it’s out of curiosity). Fortunately, there are ways to do this, so you don’t have to keep guessing.

If you want to track a few emails, you can use the read receipt method. But if you want a more convenient method, with more data, then an email tracker solution will serve you better.