emailWith more people shopping online, it seems an obvious time to increase your email marketing efforts and get customers onto websites and into stores, but a surprising number of retailers didn’t send emails last Christmas.

According to a report by Snow Valley, 38 of 107(36%) retailers studied didn’t send an email in the three months before 28 December.

Snow Valley signed up to receive emails from all 107 retailers, and the results show the number of emails received, so it is possible that some emails were sent by retailers but not receieved, but the results of the study do suggest that some retailers failed to make the most of email marketing. 


Email frequency can be an issue, but retailers sending way too many emails, as in this worst practice example, is rare, and most retailers will not send more than two a week. 

Most retailers that did send emails in the survey increased the frequency of emails in November and December 2008.

The busiest week for sending emails was the 15 – 21 December,
effectively the last week for online shopping to receive goods in time
for Christmas Day, with the first week of the month the second most

In this example from Littlewoods, the retailer’s email marketing efforts jump from two or three emails per week, to six or seven in the weeks before Christmas:

Littlewoods email frequency

This is still a high number of emails to be sending out to customers, and the retailer is running the risk of annoying its subscribers by sending so many. This was among the highest average frequencies in the study; only Figleaves and ASOS sent more.

Most retailers chose to send an average of around two per week for November and December, which is a better way of approaching email marketing. It is worth sending more in the Christmas period as more people are likely to shop online, but retailers should strike the right balance, and avoid irritating recipients.