Few Holiday Emails Feature Black Friday Themes: Study

Few retailers are sending Black Friday-themed emails. But they are blasting out generic holiday promotions, judging by SmarterHQ’s latest report.

SmarterHQ subscribed to several retail email programs in July. Based on the emails it has received, it identified four November trends. 

First, only three have sent Black Friday messages this month.

Target sent six emails for Black Friday promotion. These included product details.

Costco sent two emails. These, beginning on Nov. 5, showcase “Early Black Friday TV Savings.”

In addition, Best Buy sent a handful of messages with Black Friday deals or content.

Second, retailers are driving sales/doorbusters with quick expirations. On Nov. 8, for example, Target sent emails stating “Black Friday Preview Starts Now.” And on Nov. 11, Best Buy began sending “1-day doorbusters” urging consumer to shop items for every day up to Black Friday.

In addition, such brands as Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s are featuring VIP offers — i.e., for friends and family and Private sales.



On Nov. 9, Sam’s Club ran its “Biggest Event of the Year,” consisting of 24 hours of savings. Many emails featured countdown timers.

Third, retailers have been flooding inboxes with holiday gift guides, seasonal deals and decor ideas.

Membership-only retailers are especially active, pushing décor deals and gift guides. None of the digital native brands have sent holiday email yet this month, except or a few “HotDeals” banners in Amazon email. 

Fourth, retailers such as Walmart began including “Two-day or next day” delivery in many emails. Target is pushing “free shipping on everything atTarget.com” messages in email and in-store catalog images that are featured in email. 

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