Jan 12, 2015

MailChimp Holiday Email Volume

This past December, MailChimp sent 14.1 billion emails.


That’s up 72% from December 2013. Our largest sending day of 2014 was Cyber Monday, when our users sent 741 million emails. Our top hour was 11am EST that same day, when they sent 50 million emails. Cyber Monday and Black Friday both experienced larger growth rates than the month of December, which we think points to their growing popularity for online marketers.

I know I just threw out a lot of numbers, but here’s a chart to help you visualize those daily growth values. I included the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, as it’s becoming an increasingly high volume day compared to days earlier in the week. Maybe it needs a nickname, too?


As someone who loves data, I get into the spirit of the holiday season by crunching numbers. I wondered if we could detect how early the Christmas email marketing season starts, so I started tracking the number of emails MailChimp sent that had "Christmas" somewhere in the content or subject line. As it turns out, the season starts very early. I kept tracking the data just to see how crazy it would get.

Cyber Monday fell on December 1 this year, and we sent 33,000 "Christmas" campaigns that day, compared to the 22,000 we sent on Black Friday. We saw a pretty steady climb for the next few weeks, and our peak day for Christmas content was December 18, when we sent 55,000 campaigns talking about the holiday.


If you look closely, you can actually see "Christmas" content ramping up in late September and early October. I like to think of these users as Christmas prodigies. Now that the holidays are over, though, we’re back to "normal," sending our usual 480 million or so emails every day. We’ll probably send around 12.8 billion emails this month, with that number creeping up to December levels by May. And then that will be normal. Sheesh. I’m already looking forward to seeing what the 2015 holidays have in store for us. Here’s hoping they’re excellent.