Most consumers check email for holiday deals, but conversion doesn’t come easy

Email Marketing

Brick-and-mortar shops aren’t the only things that are overcrowded these days. While the countdown to Christmas is quickly winding down, many email marketers are consistently pumping out reminders to their subscribers and customers that their seasonal deals are ending soon. But an overflowing inbox can sometimes work against us.

Email is a top channel for holiday shoppers. New research from has found 84% of respondents said they turn to their inboxes to find deals. The research surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. consumers and sought to take a closer look at the most impactful email marketing tactics during this busy time for inboxes.

“As B2B and B2C marketers gear up for one of the busiest seasons of the year, email can be a powerful tool to raise visibility. Breaking through the holiday noise can be a challenge” said Jay Schwedelson, founder and creator of

Be relevant, stay consistent and personalize. More than half of respondents (58%) indicated brands offering relevant deals or coupons had a higher likelihood of converting. Half said that receiving relevant emails consistently creates a stronger feeling of connection to the brand, indicating that consistency does pay off — and should be maintained all year long in order to sustain your hard-earned connection with subscribers.

The impact of seasonal trends. Nearly two-thirds (64%) of respondents indicated that they were most likely to open emails from brands during the holidays with content they are interested in seeing, including deals or discounts (84%), holiday-themed content, such as gifts and décor (43%) and gift ideas and inspiration (39%).

Single-chance sales and offers create more buzz. SubjectLine’s research indicated that while sales is a top tactic used by many brands and retailers this year, focus will be key to success. Single sales or individuals offers drive more interest than multiple sales and offers, with more than half (56%) of respondents agreeing that they are more likely to open emails featuring a limited-time sale or single-item coupons.

Why we should care. Fighting to stay relevant in the managed inbox is difficult enough throughout the year, and the holiday season is sure to amplify those challenges for email marketers across the board. If your brand is offering discounted offerings, be sure to frontload that information into your subject line. While 64% of respondents saying they are more likely to open brand emails during the holidays, 84% indicated they prefer discount-related content.

“For B2C marketers, focus on what you want consumers to react to the most, make sure calls-to-action and offers are clear in marketing assets,” said Schwedelson. “B2B marketers can also capitalize on captive audiences during the holidays. Q4 is a great time to send ‘look ahead’ emails with rich content like whitepapers that speak to strategies for the coming year. In fact, these look ahead email campaigns can increase conversion rates as much as 40% over other quarters.”  

More about the Managed Inbox

About The Author

Jennifer Videtta Cannon serves as Third Door Media’s Senior Editor, covering topics from email marketing and analytics to CRM and project management. With over a decade of organizational digital marketing experience, she has overseen digital marketing operations for NHL franchises and held roles at tech companies including Salesforce, advising enterprise marketers on maximizing their martech capabilities. Jennifer formerly organized the Inbound Marketing Summit and holds a certificate in Digital Marketing Analytics from MIT Sloan School of Management.

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