Friday marks the procrastinator's version of Black Friday: Free Shipping Day. Email marketers would be smart to leverage this promotional holiday in their email campaigns to engage with consumers, and can turn to free shipping as a strategy year-round.
Free Shipping Day, held annually on Dec. 18, 2015, is a promotional holiday where many large and small online merchants offer free shipping with guaranteed delivery by Christmas. It’s also the last day consumers can get free shipping before Santa Claus’ expected arrival on December 25.
Free Shipping Day is a smart marketing move by online retailers, especially considering how online and mobile shopping has boomed this holiday season. Online and mobile shopping have been the starts of the holiday shopping period, and have accounted for an estimated $4.45 billion in sales on Thanksgiving and Black Friday, per Adobe.
Free shipping is an opportunity for email marketers today and can be leveraged as a marketing strategy year-round. Indeed, 30.8% of consumers say that free shipping is the type of email offer they most prefer when receiving marketing emails according to BlueHornet’s annual Consumer Views of Email Marketing Study.
"Free shipping offers can often be the best tool retailers and e-commerce sites can offer customers, especially during the holidays,” says Sean Brady, president of the Americas and marketing company Emarsys. “ A guarantee of delivery prior to a holiday like Christmas and combined with free delivery can alleviate any stress of planning to shop. More than anything, it is the concept of ‘free’, which tantalizes consumers more than a simple discount of the same value.”
Free shipping also keeps consumers engaged with an online merchant. Sixty-nine percent of Americans say that free shipping keeps them shopping online, according to a recent study by online cash back shopping company Ebates.
The good news for retailers is that Americans aren’t done shopping yet this holiday season. Thirty-eight percent of consumers say they always or often finish their holiday shopping within the last 48 hours, according to a recent survey of 1,700 U.S. adults by Citi Price Rewind.