About the iOS15 Privacy Updates
iOS15 provides increased visibility into how apps access customer data with the aim to protect from unwanted data collection, and gives more control to individuals over what data they choose to share. The three following changes will affect email marketing in particular.
App Privacy Report
All users can see how apps are using the permissions granted. The report clearly states what data has been used, when, by what app/website or third-party domain, how recently the user made contact and how to turn data permissions off.
Mail Privacy Protection
Information passed through the open pixels, such as IP address location, device type and timing of opens, will be masked and become difficult to track.
Hide my email
Enables users to create randomized email addresses to use when signing up in order to control who can reach out to them and when.
Predicted impact of iOS15 updates on email marketing
- Open rates on reports may appear inflated. If someone who has Mail Privacy Protection enabled receives an email, Apple preloads the content and tracks it as opened regardless if the email was opened or not.
- Journeys and automations based on open behavior may include contacts who didn’t open the email.
- A/B testing based on open behavior may include contacts who didn’t open the email.
- Segments based on open activity, contact rating, email client, campaign engagement, or location may be inaccurate.
- Campaign reports might show distorted numbers for opens, a lower “Clicks per unique open” rate, and potentially inaccurate geolocation and email client reporting for any contacts who use Apple Mail and enable the Mail Privacy Protection feature.
- Because the IP addresses will be obscured for contacts who opt into Mail Privacy Protection, you may notice fewer contacts in segments targeted to a location.
- The results of A/B tests that are based on open rates may not be accurate.
- Contact ratings of Apple Mail users will be higher than expected based on inflated open rates.
- You’ll need deliverability analytics to give you a sense of inbox placement, to understand the health of your list to ward of deliverability risks.
Checklist to prepare for the iOS15 updates
- Investigate how many contacts of you audience uses Apple Mail to get an understanding of the potential impact of the updates.
- Benchmark you average open rate among segments today to measure the effects of the iOS 15 update.
- Change how you measure email campaigns with a shift in focus to clicks or revenue. Monitor bounces and unsubscribes closely in the future.
- Email marketing engagement and contact ratings rely on opens, save contacts in segments now to use for later.
- Ask your contacts to update their personal information such as location, device and consent in a campaign with focus on collecting first party data in the email preference center.
- Review all segments based on email open activity.
- Prepare to run a scrubbing campaign early in September to optimize email list health before the updates.
- Identify contacts in you audience that are high openers but low in clicks. This will help you knowing who to keep in your audience although a drop in engagement rating.
- Review all triggered automations based on email open activity. Pause your active automations triggered based off of opens to preserve historic metrics.
- A/B test as much as possible when it comes to open rates before the update. Such as subject lines, pre headers and merge tags.
- When A/B testing use other metrics than open rate, such as click rate to determine the winner.
- Create campaigns specifically for Apple Mail users to increase engagement among this group and analyse results, this can result in an overall increase in performance.
- Set up automation for blocking email send outs to previously hard bounced email contacts containing “privaterelay.appleid.com”