When is the Best Time to Send a Marketing Email During the Holidays?

Holiday Email Marketing 101 

With all the online shopping and everyone emailing you’ll be of good cheer—it is officially the most wonderful time of the year! Retailers looking to end the year with a strong Q4 will be competing to bring in new customers and keep their regular customers happy. This means a shopping bonanza filled with unforgettable discounts and last-minute deals to be had by all.

Technology is, now more than ever, an absolutely essential part of this process. It’s no secret that since the outbreak of coronavirus in 2020, many Americans do most of their shopping online. Retail ecommerce sales are projected to reach $1.06 trillion in 2022. Businesses of all sizes rely on email marketing as their main outlet for attracting customers. With so much digital marketing competition, how can you break through the noise of Mariah Carey and Michael Bublé on repeat? How do you ensure your customers are seeing your content? When is the best time to send out these holiday emails?

Picking the Right Day for Your Holiday Email Campaign

Surprisingly, studies have shown that Friday is the most effective day for email engagement. We live our lives increasingly online. Workers are checking their emails one last time before the weekend. Intelligent shoppers are anticipating any pop-up weekend sales.

Monday is another prime day for emailing. Most people start their week by refreshing their inboxes. Sending an email on Monday makes sure your marketing email isn’t buried under an avalanche of weekend emails.

Some people mistakenly believe more emails will guarantee more attention and interaction, but sending an email every day of the week can have the opposite effect. Too many emails can come across as spam, creating frustration and making it more likely that customers will hit that unsubscribe button. The holidays are a crucial time for businesses, and the last thing you’ll want to do is lose a customer due to over-sending. Pick your spots wisely. Focus on quality over quantity.

Fine-tuning the Time of Day

During the holidays, people check their email more often, trying to finish year-end projects or catch a last minute deal. As such, major retailers will send out at least one email a day. With such high volume, the time of day that email is sent might seem irrelevant. However, there are a few peak hours when it comes to sending out emails. 

Early morning is a popular time. Eager marketers can schedule campaigns for 6AM, hoping to capture the attention of people who check their email as soon as they wake. 

Mid-morning can be effective for a similar reason. The first thing people do when starting their work day is checking their email. A holiday email campaign delivered between 8:45 and 9:15AM can find a sweet spot before the inbox of potential customers is overwhelmed for the day.

Another successful time is late afternoon. Emails sent around 4:30PM can reach workers taking a break or doing a final check. 

How Early Should You Send Holiday Emails?

It is important to take into account which holidays and sales are subject of the email. Sending out emails too early (Christmas sales in September? No thanks!), while sending them out too late can cause the recipient to ignore or miss them.

The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday is one of the largest shopping days of the year. Businesses spent $7 million dollars on advertising for Black Friday in 2020. You might see major companies like Amazon and Target alerting customers to their Black Friday deals as early as the day after Halloween, but, unless you have the pocketbook of Jeff Bezos, it is a bad idea to try to compete here. This is too early. The ideal time to send out any Black Friday information is a week or two before the holiday. This guarantees that these emails will not be lost or forgotten about within an inbox. The same pattern holds for Cyber Monday, which falls on the Monday after Thanksgiving and focuses on ecommerce deals. 

Christmas and Hanukkah are a different story. It has been discovered that the second week of November is the best time to send holiday emails. This time provides the most engagement, since many customers are ready to begin their holiday shopping early. Email engagement slumps following Cyber Monday, but then picks back up again a week before Christmas. Don’t miss out on those last minute shoppers!

Create an Email Marketing Campaign that Works for You

Are you looking to improve your email marketing? Meerkat Media Group has you covered! With experience in ecommerce, hospitality, and food, we have the know-how to reach the audience you want. Contact us today for more information on establishing email marketing flows and more.