Retailer Email Volume Soars to New High

December 23, 2009

This article is included in these additional categories:

Analytics, Automated & MarTech | Email | Retail & E-Commerce

Top online retailers set a record for the volume of promotional email they sent last week. According to Chad White, research director at Responsys and author of the Retail Email Blog, top online retailers sent their subscribers an average of 4.1 promotional emails each during the week ending December 18, 2009.


This number represents roughly an 11% increase from the average of 3.7 promotional emails top online retailers sent their subscribers during the week ending December 11, 2009. Average promotional email volume for the week ending December 11 also rose 44% from slightly more than 2.8 the week ending November 20, 2009 and 5% from about 3.8 during the equivalent four week-period in November-December 2008, reports Retailer Daily.

Last week, White predicted retail email volume would fall for the first time since the Retail Email Blog began tracking retailer email campaigns in 2006 during the week ending December 18, 2009. However, a surge in emails during this final week of guaranteed Christmas delivery with standard shipping pushed volume above last year’s. Promotional email volume has grown erratically during the 2009 holiday season, White noted.

Monday, December 14, was the most popular day to send retail emails last week, with 62% of top online retailers sending at least one promotional email. Thursday, which was Free Shipping Day, turned out to be the least popular weekday last week, with only 48% of top online retailers sending at least one promotional email, but retailers may look to leverage and build awareness of this day in 2010.

This week, retailers are expected to make their final push for Christmas messaging, and New Year’s messaging will likely start to pick up. Last week, the percentage of top online retailers sending promotional email mentioning Christmas dropped slightly from 90% the week ending December 11. During the same time period, virtually no retailers sent promotional email mentioning New Year’s.

E-commerce Strength May Continue through Holiday Season

Several recent pieces of research suggest e-commerce will be a bright spot for holiday sales in 2009. According to the November 2009 American Express Spending and Saving Tracker, the internet is expected to be a popular holiday-shopping resource this year. The study found that? 79% percent of overall respondents planned to use the internet as a tool for holiday shopping, 45% planned to purchase items online, 28% would use the internet to buy hard-to-find items, 27% wou;d use the internet for product research, and 25% planned to go online for gift ideas.

The 2009 Holiday Forecast from comparison shopping site corroborated these findings. PriceGrabber’s research indicated 70% of consumers plan to save money by performing research and comparison shopping online this year, compared with 38% last year.

Finally, according to the Deloitte 24th Annual Holiday Survey, 19% of consumers planned to access the internet via their mobile phones while shopping to find store locations, obtain coupons and sales information, as well as research products and prices. This percentage rose to 39% in the 18-29 age group.


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