E-Mail Marketing Led to Holiday Sales

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E-mail marketing led to more purchases this holiday season than last, according to a survey released yesterday by e-mail marketing company Return Path, New York.


Half of the more than 1,800 shoppers surveyed in late December said they used e-mails to make purchases, up from 44.8 percent the previous year. Meanwhile, 50.2 percent said e-mail had some influence on their shopping habits, a 10 percent jump from 2004.


Consumers' experience with a company's e-mail program before the holidays was the fastest-growing factor in whether consumers responded to holiday marketing e-mails. Seventeen percent more consumers said prior experience was an important factor in 2005.


Consumers also responded more to free shipping offers via e-mail -- a 5.8 percent increase over the previous year -- as well as e-mails offering discounts -- a 7.5 percent increase.


Despite the positive findings, 44 percent of consumers said they still received more e-mail than they expected when they registered with a Web site. And 34 percent said they reported marketing e-mails to be spam just because they did not want to receive the e-mails any longer.


Christine Blank covers online marketing and advertising, including e-mail marketing and paid search, for DM News and DMNews.com. To keep up with the latest developments in these areas, subscribe to our daily and weekly e-mail newsletters by visiting www.dmnews.com/newsletters


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