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Granicus Releases Benchmark Report on Citizen Engagement Across Government’s Top Digital Channels

WASHINGTONAug. 29, 2018 — Granicus, the leading provider of cloud-based software solutions to government, today released its 2018 Benchmark Report that arms public sector leaders with proven metrics to enhance digital strategies and engage more people. Based on an in-depth analysis of the engagement metrics of more than 4,000 organizations that use Granicus solutions, the report focuses on the top three channels used by governments to communicate with citizens – email, websites and social media.

Now in its third year, the 2018 Granicus Benchmark Report analyzed 1.6 million emails, activity from 185 million citizen subscribers, and visitor behavior on over 400,000 web pages over a one-year period (June 2017– June 2018).

“In today’s data-rich environment, public sector communicators are turning to digital platforms that generate real-time performance metrics and deliver insights that can enhance their approach to citizen engagement,” said Granicus CEO Mark Hynes. “Measured across 4,000 organizations, the Granicus Benchmark Report provides industry metrics for engagement metrics so that communicators can iterate on the strategies that are working in the public sector. Better engagement translates into better outcomes for organizations and their priorities such as program adoption, participation in public meetings, or voter turnout.”

Key findings in this year’s Benchmark Report include:

  • Government Email Leads the Way: Emails sent by the public sector regularly meet or exceed private and nonprofit sector benchmark metrics. Granicus found an overall open rate for government emails of 21 percent, a rate that has remained constant over the past three years. That compares to approximately 18 percent for the private sector and 16 percent for the nonprofit sector.
  • Email Engagement is Trending Upward: The median engagement rate increased slightly to 47 percent this year, compared to 45 percent in 2017, meaning that government communications teams are better targeting and accurately messaging to citizens needs.
  • Twitter Gets Shared Most Often, YouTube Gets Clicked: Government agencies have realized the power of social media to convey messages and deliver customer service. Granicus research finds that links to Twitter were the most likely to be shared in government emails, however, YouTube links were the most likely to be clicked, clearly demonstrating the power of video.
  • The Future is Mobile: The 2018 analysis revealed that half of all traffic to government websites comes from mobile devices, a number that has increased nearly 10 percent since 2016 is only expected to grow in the future; yet, most government websites are not mobile enabled.
  • Strong SEO is Critically Important: Sixty percent of traffic comes from organic search, so the continued emphasis on search engine optimization is vital.

Included with the Granicus 2018 findings are tips for improving each metric and an example of an organization that is performing well in that area. Granicus drew on the best practices of the current clients including the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (overlay impact), Nebraska Game and Parks Commission (email subscription per subscriber) and Calcasieu Parish, La. (mobile-responsive website design).

“As our client base grows, so does the level of insight we have into the alternatives to expensive traditional marketing methods. Using email campaigns, mobile-enabled websites and social strategically can improve citizen reach and drive better connections between government and the people they serve,” added Hynes.

The metrics in 2018 Benchmark Report are based on annual data of the 4,000 federal, state, and local, and U.K. organizations that use Granicus’ solutions.

About Granicus
Granicus provides technology that empowers government organizations to create better lives for the people they serve. By offering the industry’s leading cloud-based solutions for communications, meeting and agenda management, and digital services to more than 4,000 public sector organizations, Granicus helps turn government missions into quantifiable realities. Granicus products connect more than 185 million people, creating a powerful network to enhance government transparency and citizen engagement. By optimizing decision-making processes, Granicus strives to help government realize better outcomes and have a great impact for the citizens they serve. Learn more at

Media Contact:
Lynette Viviani
(973) 534-1004