Email Usage Statistics: A Look at How We Use Email in 2021



No other platform reaches more people than email. More than half the world uses email every day.

Email is the primary communication tool for both business and personal use. Even though other communication options have gained in popularity — like texting and chat apps — email is still the King of Communication!

General Email Usage Statistics

It’s hard to imagine a time before email. 

Email is so ubiquitous it is easy to forget that it has only been in popular use for the last 25 years or so. Today email is everywhere … and it never stops coming! 

  • More than half of the world’s population actively uses email. (PitchFunnel)
  • 4.03 billion people use email around the world in 2021. (Kinsta)
  • The total volume of email increased 7% in 2020. (GlobeNewswire)
  • An estimated 4.6 billion will use email by 2025. (Statista)
  • 319.6 billion emails are sent and received every day. (Statista)
  • 149,513 emails are sent every minute. (Expanded Ramblings)
  • Most email users have more than one email account. The average is 1.75. (PitchFunnel)
  • People ages 25 to 34 spend an average of 6.4 hours a day using email. (CNBC)
  • 78% of teenagers use email. (Lifewire)
  • Just under 90% of Americans aged 15 and over have active email accounts. (99 Firms)
  • People aged 35 and older spend an average of 5 hours per day using email. (CNBC)
  • 85% of the United States are active email users. (PitchFunnel)
  • Gmail accounts make up 53% of US email. (PitchFunnel)
  • 99% of users check their email at least once per day. (Data Marketing Association)
  • 40% of respondents from a survey stated they have tried to "detox" from their email for an average of five days. (Forbes)
  • There are 5.59 billion active email accounts worldwide. (Radicati Group)
  • 1.8 billion of those accounts are with Gmail. (Finances Online)
  • The first email system was developed in 1971. (Lifewire)
  • The email software industry was valued at $47 billion in 2020. (T4)
  • 24% of Americans believe they check email “way too much”. (Adobe)

Time spent checking email increased 17 percent Year-over-Year (YoY) and people expect email will remain the preferred way of communicating at work in five years...Nearly 70 percent check email while watching TV and 45 percent while in the bathroom.

 be contacted by brands via email versus direct m 

Email is everywhere … half the people on earth use it daily.

Email Use in Business

By far most emails sent are for business purposes. This includes both email marketing, business-to-business communications, and interoffice emails.

  • 70% of professionals use email to share industry-related information. (Kinsta)
  • 62.86% of business professionals prefer email for business communication. (Lifewire)
  • Email has a 90.3% penetration rate among U.S. internet users. (Kinsta)
  • 63% of business emails are managed by Gmail or Outlook. (PitchFunnel)
  • 50% of white collar workers prefer to be contacted by brands via email verses direct mail and social media. (Adobe)
  • 46% of email is opened on a mobile device. (PitchFunnel)
  • 70% of employees will read their emails while watching television at home. (Adobe)
  • 50% of employees read an estimated 29 emails on the weekend. (Adobe)
  • 82% of employees in 2019 checked their work email after office hours. (Statista)
  • Half of those employees check their email accounts every few hours. (PitchFunnel)
  • Only 8.5% of marketing emails receive a response. (PitchFunnel)
  • 43% of businesses are expected to spend more on email marketing than they did in 2019. (The Manifest)
  • US companies spent approximately $3.07 billion on email marketing in 2019. (Statista)
  • A typical employee sends 40 emails per day for business purposes. (Lifewire)
  • 1/3 of millennial workers are comfortable using emojis to communicate with a direct manager or senior executive. (Adobe)

Spam, Spam Everywhere!

Spam is the “junk mail” of the internet, unsolicited offers that show up in your inbox, usually in great numbers. Spam is often sent by automated email marketing programs.

According to Gatefy, spam can be broken down into seven main categories:

  1. Advertisements
  2. Chain letters
  3. Phishing
  4. Hoaxes
  5. Money scams
  6. Malware warnings
  7. Adult content

Cybercriminals will use any and all of these techniques to steal your personal account information. Let’s look at some spam stats below.

  • 53% of all emails sent in 2020 were spam. (Statista)
  • Gmail blocks over 100 million phishing emails each day. (Google Blog)
  • 58% of email users check their spam folders daily. (Consumer Email Tracker)
  • In 2009, 94% of all emails were spam. (PitchFunnel)
  • 91.5% of marketing outreach emails are ignored. (PitchFunnel)
  • Healthcare is the top spam topic, followed by offers for malware protection. (Lifewire)
  • “I get too many emails,” is the main reason email users give when unsubscribing from email lists. (Lifewire)

Spam cleanup and protection are an inevitable part of email use.

Email Use and The Environment

Each and every email leaves a tiny carbon footprint. But when you step back and look at the scale of email use around the globe, you see how that tiny carbon footprint grows into a massive environmental problem.

  • One email produces .3 grams of CO2 emissions. (TheGoodPlanet)
  • If each person in the United States deleted 500 unread emails we could save 2 billion gallons of gasoline. (TheGoodPlanet)
  • If the population of England sent one less email per day, it could reduce CO2 emissions by 18,000 tons. (Statista)

Where Do People Read Email?

Mobile devices allow people to read and respond to email anywhere, anytime … even in some places they shouldn’t!

  • 42% of email is opened on a mobile device. (Kinsta)
  • 39.8% of email is opened on web-based apps. (Kinsta)
  • 18.2% of email is opened on a desktop app. (Kinsta)
  • 28% of all emails were opened on Apple iPhones. (Statista)
  • 26% of all emails are sent via Gmail. (Statista)
  • 42% of Americans check their email while using the bathroom. (Expanded Ramblings)
  • 18% of Americans check their email while driving. (Expanded Ramblings)
  • 69% of Americans check their email while watching a movie or tv show. (Expanded Ramblings)
  • 57% of Americans and check their email in bed. (Expanded Ramblings) 
  • 79% of Americans check their email on vacation. (Adobe)

Millennials are the age group most likely to check their email from bed at 70%, from the bathroom 57% or while driving 27%.

Source: Kinsta

Open Rates: Who’s Reading Email

Open rates measure the number of emails opened by recipients.

  • 20.96% is the average open rate for retail email.
  • 22.23% is the average open rate for political email.
  • 20.89% is the average open rate for professional services email.

(Source: Expanded Ramblings)

Malicious Email

It wasn’t long after the advent of email when thieves and scammers began using it for nefarious purposes. From phishing scams to malware viruses, email dangers abound. 

Fortunately most users know to be wary when using email. 

According to Statista, 45% of email users say they won’t open an email from an unknown email address.

Protect yourself against malicious email!

The Future Of Email

According to the Radicati Group, email usage will continue to rise in the coming years. While various communication apps may target certain segments of the population, email unites us all!

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