The more data you have on your email activity, the easier it is to understand what works, and what doesn’t.

Email tracking tools can help you gather data on how your recipients are interacting with your emails, whether it’s for sales outreach, customer support, or to improve your email marketing efforts in general.

In this guide, we’re going to look at the best email tracking software that you can use on Gmail, Outlook, or as a standalone platform, to help you improve your ROI on your email outreach efforts.

  1. What is Email Tracking Software?

  2. How does Email Tracking Software Work?

  3. Benefits of Using Email Tracking Software

  4. 8 Best Email Tracking Tools to Improve Your Email Usage

Let’s dive in.

What is Email Tracking Software?

Email tracking software connects with your email account and lets you track actions like:

  • Whether someone opens your email or not

  • When they opened your email

  • The reply rate on your email campaigns

The functionality will depend on the tool you’re using, and your goals. For example, a sales-focused email tracker will help you track different metrics to a productivity or customer support email tracking tool.

How does Email Tracking Software Work?

There are two main types of email tracking software.

The first is standalone platforms. Once you create an account, you can log in to these platforms and manage your email activity from them without ever touching your inbox. These are often more powerful, but require you to commit to using that platform for your email activities.

The second type of email tracking tool works as browser extensions. They add new functionality to your existing Gmail or Outlook email inbox, and you’ll see them overlaid onto the inbox you use. These are generally more lightweight solutions.

To track how prospects engage with your emails, they insert a tracking pixel into the email body, which will notify you when your email is opened. If you include links, there will be a custom tracking URL that registers whenever the link is clicked.

One thing to note is that if your recipients have the “Ask before displaying external images” option enabled in their email settings, your tracking pixel won’t work if your prospect doesn’t load images.

There can also be a small impact on email deliverability, so track your emails with caution and always run regular deliverability tests. 

Benefits of Using Email Tracking Software

1. Understand How Prospects Interact With Your Emails

The first main benefit of an email tracker is that you know what happens to your emails after you hit ‘send’.

For example: 

  • How long after sending did your prospect open your email?

  • What time of day do most people open your emails?

  • Did they click any links, or forward the email on?

You can then use the data to optimize your future email sending habits. If you see the majority of your prospects open your emails between 9 and 12 am, you can schedule your next outreach campaign to send during that time period.

2. Improve Your Email Templates

You can use your reply rate and click-through rate data to gauge how engaging your emails are to your recipients.

If you’re seeing a reply rate of 10% or less, you know there are improvements you can make to your emails to improve how well they resonate with recipients. 

If you include a demo booking link as your call-to-action but no one is clicking it, you can test using a simple, text-based call-to-action in your next email campaign.

It’s worth noting that email trackers won’t tell you what to change in your email templates. They’ll report the data back to you, and then it’s on you to update your email templates.

3. Plan Your Follow-Up Emails

Tracking email activity can give you insights into when to follow up with prospects.

For example, if you sent a sales outreach campaign three days ago and then saw that your email was opened, but you didn’t receive a reply, you know it’s going to be a good time to follow up. You’ll also see that they’ve read your last email, so they’ll already have some context when they see your name in the inbox again.

If someone didn’t open or read your email, you can send a follow-up with more information to help start a conversation with your prospect.

The more context you have, the more personalized each interaction with your recipient can be.

8 Best Email Tracking Tools to Improve Your Email Usage

1. QuickMail - Best Overall Email Tracking Software

Manage your entire cold email campaigns from one powerful sales and email automation platform

QuickMail is a standalone email automation platform with features to help you send, manage, and track your cold email activity to ensure you never miss an important reply from a sales lead.

Here are some of the key ways it can help improve your email usage.

1. Track Every Key Cold Email Metric

When you send an email campaign in QuickMail you can choose what metrics you need to track. If you want to track opens and clicks, you can enable those on a per-email basis. For example, you could leave email tracking off your first touchpoint to improve deliverability and add it on to later follow-up emails.

When your emails have been sent, you can see all of your key cold email metrics in your dashboard, even if you’re managing emails for multiple clients.

You can even A/B test different email campaigns and see how each one compares to ensure you’re generating the best results from your cold outreach campaigns.

2. Follow-Up Automatically Based on Reply Status

If you need an email tracking tool to help you improve your follow-up email scheduling, then QuickMail has you covered. When you schedule a campaign you can add as many follow-up steps as you need to.

If a prospect doesn’t reply to your email, they’ll be automatically followed up with, and you won’t even need to hit send.

As well as improving your email productivity, it ensures no prospect is ever forgotten about. Considering 55% of replies to cold emails come from a follow-up, this is an essential step to take when creating your campaigns.

3. Manage Multiple Team Inboxes from One Place

As your sales team grows you’ll need to manage multiple inboxes, and tracking activity across them can be challenging if you need to log in and out of your sales tools every time you need to review your metrics.

QuickMail is designed for collaboration, and you can add as many inboxes as you need and send emails from all of them, then check your results.

There’s a built-in audit log that tracks all campaign changes, so whenever you, your team members, or freelancers make adjustments to campaigns, you’ll know precisely what has changed.

You can try out QuickMail with a free trial to see if it’s right for your email needs.

Pricing: Free trial available, paid plans from $49 per month

Features:

  • Email response rate, open rate, click-through rate, and unsubscribe rate tracking

  • Automatically follow-up with recipients

  • Collaboration features such as inbox rotation

  • Send personalized email templates to recipients at scale

  • Deliverability tools to ensure your emails land in the inbox

2. MailTrack - Best Native Email Tracking For Gmail

Free email tracking software for Gmail that works as a browser extension

MailTrack is a popular option for a reason. It offers a generous free email tracking tool that lets you track as many email opens as you need to.

For time-sensitive emails, such as sales proposals or cold email follow-ups, you can get in-browser email alerts when a recipient opens an email, and alerts if someone doesn’t open your emails after a period of time.

There is a paid version of MailTrack that offers extra features, such as link-click alerts, daily reports, removal of the MailTrack branding in your emails, and no-reply alerts, which are all helpful extras.

Pricing: Free plan available, paid plans from €4.99 per month

Features:

  • Free email tracker for Gmail that works in your existing inbox

  • Link click alerts, open alerts, and no-reply alerts

  • Get notifications in your browser

3. Boomerang for Gmail - Email Tracking For Gmail

Email tracker and productivity software with open and link-click notifications

Boomerang for Gmail is an email productivity tool that includes email open and click-tracking as part of the product offering.

After sending an email you’ll get reminders if someone doesn’t reply, and notified if someone does open and engage with your email.

Another valuable feature is the ability to schedule emails to go out at a later date, so it’s ideal if you have a habit of writing your emails late at night but want them to hit your prospects’ inboxes first thing in the morning.

Boomerang has other features that are mainly designed to improve your general productivity, such as the ability to pause incoming emails from entering your inbox and a one-click meeting invite generator.

Pricing: Free plan available, paid plans from $4.99 per month

Features:

  • Simple email tracking Gmail extension

  • Open, click, and reply detection and notifications

  • Follow-up email reminders if someone doesn’t respond

4. RightInbox - Email Tracking For Gmail With PDF Features

Email tracking and PDF tracking tool for Gmail and G Suite

RightInbox is an email tracking and reminder platform for Gmail and G Suite. You can install the extension and be up and running in 30 seconds and it adds a suite of extra useful features to upgrade your Gmail experience.

The email tracking gives you real-time insights into email opens, email link clicks, even if you have multiple recipients in your email thread.

As well as email tracking, you can use RightInbox to add multiple signatures to your Gmail to adjust depending on your campaign and prospect, and add private notes to your email conversations and review them from your Gmail account to make sure you always have the full context for every conversation.

Pricing: Free plan available, paid plans from $5.95

Features:

  • Email open tracking for Gmail

  • Email signature management feature

  • CRM sync and contact notes inside your Gmail account

5. Gmelius - Email Tracking Across GSuite

Email tracking platform that adds tracking and collaboration tools onto your G Suite or Gmail inbox 

Gmelius is an email collaboration platform that works on top of your Gmail account.

It adds a host of features to your familiar Gmail inbox, including kanban boards, shared team labels for prospects, shared email drafts, and more, all designed to help keep you and your team on the same page.

As well as that, there is a detailed email tracking system included.

You’ll be able to see instant notifications when emails to your recipients are opened and see details such as how many times they interacted with your email, and whether or not they clicked on it. You can use that data to gauge the interest of your leads and plan your next follow-up email. 

If you CC’d or BCC’d people, you can even track how those individuals engaged with the email, perfect for if you’re looping several key decision-makers at a sales target in on your proposal.

Another useful feature is the team activity reports. They’ll show you how many emails you and your team are replying to, sending, and closing on each day so you can accurately measure progress.

Pricing: $9 per user per month

Features:

  • Accurate email tracking for Gmail to see prospect activity

  • Monitor activity on CC’d and BCC’d recipients

  • Adds new collaboration tools to your Gmail or G Suite inbox

6. Cirrus Insight - Email Tracking For Outlook

Sales-focused email tracking software for Outlook and Gmail with Salesforce integration

Cirrus Insight is a platform designed for Salesforce users who need to ensure their email address is synced with Salesforce records. It connects to your Outlook or Gmail account, allowing you to see prospect records from your inbox without needing to change tabs all day.

Built into the platform are email tracking, link tracking, and even web visitor tracking - a feature that shows you when someone visits your website based on their company IP address.

You’ll know if someone is reading your outreach email, sales proposal, or post-demo email and be able to tailor your next email to fit the situation.

Pricing: Starts from $10 per month

Features: 

  • Email open tracking and link click tracking

  • See when prospects visit your website after opening your emails

  • Sync all email activity with your Salesforce CRM to stay updated on prospect activity

7. Streak - Simplest Email Tracker For Gmail

Simple email tracker for Gmail with extra CRM capabilities to improve your email workflow

Streak is a CRM and email tracker for your Gmail inbox. When you’ve added it to your inbox, you’ll get extra tools you can use directly from Gmail to improve how you use and engage with emails.

The email tracker has several useful features. First, you can get automatically notified when your emails are opened, either in Streak, or as a browser notification. Even if you’re working on another task and not checking your emails, you’ll immediately see when your email does eventually get opened.

To help you prioritize your email workflow, you can see which recipients opened your emails chronologically, to avoid leaving anyone waiting for long.

There’s also a useful feature that lets you group prospects based on their reply status. Using that information, you can customize your follow-ups to improve the chances of getting a reply to your next email.

Because email tracking can affect deliverability, Streak also lets you turn off tracking if you don’t need it enabled.

Pricing: Free plan available that includes email tracking.

Features:

  • Group contacts based on whether they’ve opened your emails

  • Get browser notifications if someone opens an email

  • Built-in CRM to organize contacts

8. Front - Generic Email Tracker

Email management for customer support teams with email tracking features

Front is a standalone CRM platform that connects to your Outlook or Gmail accounts and lets you manage all of your email needs from their app.

It’s mainly designed for customer support teams. As part of their platform, they offer email tracking that can help your team understand where each customer is in the support ticket process. Once email tracking is enabled, you’ll see when your customers have opened your email, as well as how many times they’ve seen it.

If you notice that a customer opened your email three times but you still didn’t hear back, you could send a friendly follow-up asking if they need any extra assistance. 

Front is an entire email and support platform so if you only need email tracking, it could be overkill, but it’s still an excellent tool for support teams.

Pricing: Starts at $19 per month

Features:

  • Track how many times customers open your emails

  • Tag messages based on priority or their status

  • Works with any email service provider, including Gmail and Outlook

Wrapping Up

These email tracking tools will help you improve your email workflow and stay on top of your email usage.

You can use open tracking to see when your recipients open your emails and link click tracking to understand how they engage with any assets you send them. Using that information, you can optimize how you next reach out and engage with a prospect.

The best email tracking software for you will depend on your exact needs. If you just need a lightweight browser extension, an option like MailTrack can work well. If you need a powerful platform to manage your sales email efforts, then QuickMail is a better option.

Most of these tools have either a free plan or a generous free trial, so make sure to test them yourself to make sure they fit your needs.