Until recently, marketers have been able to reliably look at past holiday performance as a strong starting point to build their email strategy for the next. But this year? Not so much.

Retailers and researchers alike have scrutinized consumer behavior closely since March, looking for trends and changes in shopping patterns. This report title from WARC, based on panel data and insight from media firm Meredith, sums up the general direction of most of the research so far: “Meredith predicts consumers will use e-commerce to drive an earlier, quieter 2020 holiday season.”

The 10 statistics below show a combination of two big trends: Consumer behavior shifted significantly in the first seven months of 2020, but marketers can still base their planning on a few fundamentals. 

1. 48% of holiday shoppers expect to spend less to “a lot less” than last year. Nonretail services like dining out will be affected most. (Coresight

2. One-third of holiday shoppers expect to do their shopping on Amazon Prime Day, which is expected to be in October. Another 28% said they will start their holiday shopping earlier than usual, 18% said they would shop on Black Friday (Coresight)

3. The proportion of consumers avoiding any kind of public places, especially malls and shopping centers, spiked to 85% in late July, reversing a gradual decline (Coresight). 

4. 73% of holiday shoppers will purchase primarily online this holiday (Netimperative/Rakuten).

5. More than 72% of consumers believe the 2020  holidays will be different from past years. (WARC/Meredith)

6. 50% of consumer families have someone concerned about a job. More than a third of them have already experienced some loss of income. (WARC/Meredith)

7. July, August and September have the highest rates of shopper interaction with customer reviews, photos, and questions and answers as they research gifts online. (NetImperative/BazaarVoice)

8. October is the month when shoppers are most likely to submit reviews and questions as they intensify their gift shopping. (NetImperative/BazaarVoice)

9. Retailers’ loyalty-program members generate 12% to 18% more revenue for retailers than non-member customers (Accenture Interactive).

10. 36.4% of consumers say they don’t consider themselves brand loyal until they’ve made five or more purchases from a brand, and 36.5% of shoppers said they will spend more on products if they’re loyal to a brand.  (Yotpo).   

What now? How to act on new insights

Most of the evidence points toward an unpredictable, difficult holiday season for email marketers, right at a time they’re under more pressure than ever to drive results and make up for lost time. Creative, innovative measures will be needed to stand out in a crowded inbox, keep revenue flowing, and stay essential to your team.

Download the 2020 Holiday Email Lookbook for ideas and inspiration to update your email strategy for a new kind of holiday season. You’ll get actionable tips and examples to help you pursue revenue growth, engagement, and efficiency when it’s needed most.

New decade, new chance to track and smash your email marketing goals for 2020!

Where to begin? With this curated list of 9 email marketing statistics for 2020. Each one is tied to a strategy that can help you achieve just about any business goal. 

What’s your main objective this year? We have a stat for that – that is, we’ve tracked down research to help you form and clarify your plan for developing strategies and tactics that will help you achieve it. 

1. Advanced personalization generates $20 of added revenue for every $1 invested in it.

If this isn’t the statistic of the year for email marketers who need to make a case for tactical investments that show a clear return, we’ll eat our virtual hats. 

The data is from The Relevancy Group’s 2019 report, The Value of Personalization Optimization for Retailers, and is one of many eye-opening findings of the research.

If your list of 2020 marketing goals includes increasing revenue (and whose doesn’t?), get your own copy of the report or read our analysis of the findings on advanced personalization.

2. On average, marketers lose a full 34% of newly acquired subscribers within the first month.

It’s an old marketing maxim that your newest customers are your most engaged, but this stat shows that they grow cold quickly if you don’t nurture them. Not everybody is ready to buy all the time. But, you need to get them clicking quickly to keep their interest and show you offer them something valuable in exchange for their email addresses.

Try adding a live polling function to your welcome email and business-as-usual emails to get those pre-purchase clicks. This gives customers people a reason to engage even if they aren’t in the market to buy. And if you phrase your polling questions right, you can also collect important preference or attitude data that you can use to segment and target your customers even before you get behavior data.

3. Birthday emails can lift conversion rates by 60% over non-birthday emails with the same offer. 

Birthday messages aren’t just nice greetings to send your customers. They have a revenue payoff, too. If you already send birthday emails, add a dynamic feature to pique your customers’ attention, such as a scratch-off image revealing their special birthday deal.

4. BOPIS is big: 72% of Generation Z shoppers used Buy Online Pick Up In Store services within the last 30 days.

Who knew Gen Z could be the ones to save brick-and-mortar retail? While their parents and older siblings shop from the couch, consumers born in 1995/1996 like to visit the store – but not to poke around until they find what they want. 

This Package Concierge study found 58% of younger shoppers have used BOPIS at least once. The reasons vary, but many revolve around same-day gratification. They find what they want online, but they don’t want to wait or pay to have it shipped. 

Help your BOPIS shoppers of all ages find you by including personalized location information in each email, with a live map of the nearest location or the street address.

5. Consumers are interested in technologies that show whether a product is in stock (55%), help them compare prices or read reviews (49%), make it easier to find a product or its location (47%), or try an item before buying it (38%). 

All of those action capitalize on consumers’ interests in taking time and friction out of the buying process. 

Your email messages can take even more steps out of the process by adding dynamic content that uses real-time data to alert customers about low or sold-out inventory, to add your social feeds from review sources like BazaarVoice or show a map or store directions to bring them to your doorstep.

6. Emails using dynamic content based on real-time data generated an estimated $7 million of incremental revenue, or 17.4% more than purchase-based personalization.

Here’s another statistic from The Relevancy Group’s 2019 report, The Value of Personalization Optimization for Retailers, showing how personalization at the highest level beat out simple name personalization and even purchase-based personalization for revenue generation. 

Basic first-name personalization has pretty much lost its edge as a customer engagement device, and purchase-based data can be too limiting. You don’t need to scrap them because they do serve a purpose in showing your customers you know who they are and what their history is with your brand.

Rather, add a top layer of data-driven advanced personalization because it’s the most effective of the three methods and generates measurable revenue.

7. Adding videos to your email can boost open rates by 6%, increase click rates by 300% and reduce unsubscribes up 26%.

People love videos, as the stats show. Adding live video to email messages was thought to be too complex given the limitations imposed by different email clients and platforms, but a module like Liveclicker’s LiveVideo element can bypass those concerns.  

8. Both active and inactive subscribers order more often and spend more than nonsubscribers.

This study of email activity by the millions of subscribers who get emails from its platform because it showed that inactive subscribers aren’t always gone for good. 

The research found subscribers order at least 25% more often than non-subscribers, spend at least 6% more and are much more likely to shop again. Inactive subscribers are 26% more likely to make a follow-up purchase than non-subscribers, and their monetary value to the mailing list is about 32% of an active subscriber.

The findings support efforts to tune tuning up our acquisition efforts to attract new subscribers and to be judicious about handling inactives. Instead of just lopping them off your list, look for patterns that show website browsing and purchases even among subscribers whose records few or no email opens.

9. Even though 86% of consumers are concerned about data privacy, 72% of them will engage only with personalized marketing messages.

We’ve been hearing this mixed message for years, so it shouldn’t surprise you. But you can put this set of stats to work in your email messages in 2020 to build trust and serve up meaningful, not creepy, personalization.

Add links to a plain-language version of your privacy and data-management policies in every email. It’s not just a nice thing to do; it will help you comply with strict privacy and email requirements in laws such as the newly enacted California Consumer Privacy Act, which affects any marketer holding data, including email addresses, on California residents.

As you build trust, you can also add in the relevant personalization that dynamic content based on real-time data instead of potentially inappropriate or irrelevant numbers. Everybody wins in this scenario.

As a digital marketer, chances are good that you’re familiar with the challenges associated with marketing to Generation Z. After all, this is the generation that has a short attention span, is reputed not to use email, and seemingly threatens to kill any business that is not online. Tough crowd.

While these perceptions may have a kernel of truth, new findings show that there is another side of the coin—younger generations may even love email

If so, it’s good news because Gen Z is still an extremely important target demographic. Campaign Monitor recently surveyed hundreds of Gen Z individuals and published some interesting insights in its “Ultimate Guide to Marketing to Generation Z in 2019.”

For example, one research report shows that, by 2020, Gen Z is expected to account for 40% of all customers. Additionally, their buying power is $44 billion today, a number than expands to $600 billion when you consider the influence they have on their parents’ spending. That’s some serious clout.

Three ways to improve results for marketing to Gen Z

Clearly, Gen Z represents a significant opportunity, but only for those email marketers who are willing to implement innovative new ways to connect and engage with Gen Z in the way they prefer.

To help, here are three tips for creating valuable new email experiences Gen Z will love.

Tip 1: Use video to take the email experience up a notch

With so many marketing messages and various content competing for Gen Z’s attention, how can you create email campaigns that are sure to cut through the clutter?

The first thought is that have to do all you can to rethink traditional email approaches and deliver your message in creative new ways. For example, instead of continuing to present information in a static, text-heavy email, you need to think of new ways to surprise, even delight, your audience.

Adding video to email is a great way to do this, and it aligns with what Gen Zers prefer. According to recent research from the Pew Research Institute, the platform Gen Z uses the most is YouTube (85% report using it and 32% more say they use it the most of any social media site).

Imagine your recipient’s reaction to seeing a high quality video delivered right in the email itself. Three Liveclicker clients have used video in email to transform their campaigns, and you can, too.

[One quick note: Many marketers still think adding video to email is more challenging that you may think. If you’d like to learn just how easy it is, please check out this blog post.]

Tip 2: Always include a preference center

The Campaign Monitor survey examined the amount of email Gen Z currently receives, how often they would prefer to receive it, and the specific reasons they use email. It turns out that these results are mixed. Some individuals want to hear from brands daily; some prefer monthly.

One way to make sure you always give them what they want is to include a preference center. Using a preference center lets you ask your subscribers how frequently they want to hear from you and even lets them segment themselves into appropriate audiences and lists.

Tip 3: Don’t ignore newsletters

The Campaign Monitor survey also found that 39% of Gen Z respondents reported that they subscribe to 1-5 email newsletters yet 37.5%  say they subscribe to zero. Where those with a “glass-half-empty” view might think that email newsletters are already too popular, many more see them as a valuable new opportunity.

Why is this? For starters, remember that Gen Z is looking for authentic relationships with their preferred brands. Consumers are looking to buy from brands that appear human, and if they like what they see, they tend to become lifelong brand advocates.

Email newsletters provide the ideal opportunity for personal interactions with your brand, while also enabling you to provide helpful information and show your human side.

New strategies, new results

When it comes to email marketing to Generation Z, you can’t rely on the “same old, same old” approaches from the past. Instead, you need to consider innovative new ways to catch their attention, surprise them with engaging new experiences, and connect with them in entirely new ways. When you do, you’ll stand apart as a company they want to do business with, and hopefully, gain their lifetime loyalty.

To learn even more tips for marketing to Gen Z, check out the entirety of Campaign Monitor’s  “Ultimate Guide to Marketing to Gen Z in 2019” today!

We recently published an article that highlighted 21 compelling email statistics that could help every email marketer, especially those looking for real-time personalization best practices.

Before we dive in to our next set of email marketing stats, here’s a little context. Our first article was intended to summarize email findings from 2018 or even a little earlier in order to show the state of email marketing and how strategies such as real-time personalization could make it even more effective.

While those statistics are still relevant and insightful, we wanted to look ahead and focus this post on email marketing stats in 2019 (and beyond), especially in the light of emerging business and technology trends.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at the latest email marketing statistics in 2019 and what they mean for the future.

A real opportunity

Unlike many marketing channels that see declines in performance and results, email marketing is still an extremely popular—and effective—platform. Why should marketers continue to embrace email marketing in 2019 and the future?

Proven ROI

At the same time, email is the undisputed champ when it comes to ROI.

Perfect partners: Email plays nice with mobile

To succeed today, marketers need to capture consumers’ attention on multiple screens, especially mobile devices.

Best practices to consider

We hope these statistics are helpful as you continue to think about new ways to develop and deploy email marketing campaigns in 2019 and beyond (hint: don’t forget real-time personalization!). We will continue to keep an eye on industry trends, so stay tuned for future articles on email marketing statistics.