Design Marketing Templates How-to
~ 17 min read
rate it
07 November 2019

Christmas Email Marketing Ideas

Stripo / Blog / Christmas Email Marketing Ideas

Christmas is the best time of the year. People are full of expectations and hopes for miracles and happiness to come or stay. 

Christmas Emails_First Image

While marketers are full of hopes to break their selling record ;) 

Today is the right time to start preparing for the holiday season and reach out to our clients with perfect Christmas emails.

Why now exactly? — Because, per research conducted by the NRF, 43% of gifts for this magic holiday are bought in November. And only 18% will be bought in December.

Interesting stats about Christmas and consumers behavior:

  1. An average consumer will spend $1,048 on Christmas gifts and decorations in 2019.

  2. 56% of consumers plan to shop online.

  3. 73% of all consumers use their phones and tablets to search for the best presents. Even if later they go to an offline store.

How can you make your Christmas emails stand out among thousands of offers provided by other brands?

It’s not that difficult. The key to success in Christmas email marketing is simple — do not to sell your products, put a smile on your customers’ faces and spread the Christmas spirit! This makes your newsletters effective as recipients are more likely to buy from those who spread the mood.


Our ideas for Christmas newsletters are there to help you out!

Christmas campaign ideas

We are willing to share the results of the investigations we’ve conducted on this topic and our own impressions of emails in our Inboxes..

1. Choose the right time to start

Some influencers recommend starting Christmas campaigns right after Thanksgiving, while others suggest that you do it much sooner.

We think it totally depends on your business. 

If you run an online store, you may start your Christmas email campaigns at the beginning of November.

For instance, Brighton, the jewelry brand, sends their Christmas emails the next day after Halloween.

Christmas Emails_Announce the Start of Holiday Season

Here, they announce they will help us with gifts, tips, and will provide huge sales, of course. 

By doing this, you can either prepare your customers for the sales that you’ll run during the long weekend (Black Friday through Cyber Monday) and they will know where exactly they can get the best presents, or let them buy gifts beforehand and escape the “buy the best gifts at lower prices” race. 

If you run either a hotel, or a restaurant, or a travel agency, you should really start reaching out to your target audience in September to let people plan their holidays beforehand.


2. Build sequences of emails

The best Christmas email campaigns comprise sequences. We need sequences to a) set the holiday spirit, which convinces customers to buy from us, b) remind customers about ourselves if we start our Christmas campaign before the holiday.


The number of emails in the sequence depends on its duration. But more than one or two emails per week may annoy.

The Christmas newsletter ideas for the sequence:

  • Email 1. Teasing recipients

Teaser emails make recipients anticipate the next email. Gamification can be of great use here.

Christmas Emails_Sequence_Teaser-Rollover

Put a shade of intrigue on everything you do in this campaign. Make readers think of you!

  • Email 2. Revealing secrets

When you finally decide to let the customers know what they’re about to get, make the focus on it in your Christmas newsletters.


  • Email 3. Using countdown timers

A week or two before your sales starts, be sure to add a countdown timer to: 

  1. let them know there’s not much time left till the holiday;

  2. to urge to shop.


  • Email 4. Announcing the start of the sale

Yes, you’ve informed your customers that the sale will start on Day X. But it’s too soon to rest as customers may forget about it. We now need to reach out to them when the sale actually begins.

Start of the Sale_by Chubbies

  • Email 5. Greeting customers on Christmas Eve

Certainly, on this day there might be someone who will still buy from you, but normally people are ready to celebrate. Congratulate them on the best Holiday of the year! Let subscribers feel special, let them know you reach out to them not only to sell but show them you care.

Christmas Email Campaigns_Greeting Cards

Important to note:

Be sure to avoid center-aligned texts in your emails as they go against the Accessibility guidelines — only left-aligned texts, as in the example above.

Also, avoid using greeting cards to congratulate customers on Christmas and New Year. First of all, we should do it out of the accessibility reasons as screen readers are not able to read text placed on images. Second of all, some email clients may block such emails or may not show the images. But if your email consists of rows/containers/blocks, and you add alt names to all images you use for your Christmas newsletters, then even if any of the images are blocked or removed, recipients will still see the alt text and will have a clue what your Christmas email is all about. 

The greetings in this example contain a text block and an email background. It will be read by all screen readers and rendered by all email clients.

3. Think your value offer through

No matter how much we love this holiday, we would not mind getting some discounts on presents for our family and friends.

There are three major kinds of discounts:

  • Personalized discount

It can be a coupon for all those who shopped with you just once or a lifetime discount who spent a certain amount of money on your services.


  • Conditional discount

If they spent a certain amount through 2019, then in 2020 they will have an additional discount to all your products and services.

This may encourage customers to shop with you again and again. 

Also, you can offer them a discount that depends on the amount they are going to spend in your online store now.

Christmas Emails_Announce the Start of the Sale_Hill City

(Christmas email by Hill City)

20% off if they spend, say, $200; 30% off — when they spend $300, etc.

  • Major Christmas sale

This is the time when we are looking for special presents for our friends, family, beloved ones, colleagues, etc. Certainly, a little discount will be of great use.

Christmas Email Marketing_Major Salepng

4. Giving presents

Apart from giving huge discounts, you can also give presents to your subscribers.

Ideas for Christmas Newsletters_Giving Gifts

This simple “trick” will:

  • drive traffic to your website;

  • make subscribers strive for your products — many will buy if they don’t win;

  • will make at least one person happy — isn’t it great?

5. Help everyone get what they really want 

You wanted a fishing spinner, but your friends bought a pair of socks? You wanted a pair of jeans, but your family bought another pair of socks? This happens quite often.

Christmas Gifts_HintBoxes

Why not help your subscribers get what they really want?

Here’s what Chubbies did last year: they let their customers add favorite items to cart. And then this brand “hinted” to friends and relatives of their subscribers what items this particular user added to his or her cart.

6. Make a review of the year

Remind your clients what you’ve been through together. First of all, customers will know you track their success, second of all, you might remind them how helpful and supportive you’ve been all year.


This is a great Christmas newsletter idea for businesses that provide consulting and legal services, that provide some tools to work with.

You may also brag about your brand’s achievements so that customers know they deal with an ambitious company. 


Note: you can keep your reports stern and formal, but Christmas email design won’t hurt, also.

7. Share plans for the next year

Share your plans for the next year if they are huge. People will love to know what you are up to and what to expect from you in 2020.

Of course, in this case, you will need to implement them ;)

8. Run contests

Competitions always win our interest. Some would like to participate, while others would love to watch and vote.

Canva really knows how to leverage the Christmas spirit by garnering audience engagement.


It’s because everyone is already in the holiday spirit and you just need to entice them a bit more through your Christmas email marketing to interact with you during the holiday season. 

9. Announce free shipping

Like we’ve said above, customers are ready to spend an impressive $1,043 on presents. This is huge. Give them a little reward for being so kind and generous to their friends — offer free shipping.

Free Delivery_Decathlon

The NRF states that 92% of customers are going to shop with brands that provide free shipping. 92%! You see, it matters!

10. Specify the dates of delivery

People buy presents for a special day. Hence, it is critical to have those orders delivered by this certain date. 

However, we all know that the post offices and delivery services are quite busy this time. And delivering orders can take longer than it usually does. 

Christmas Email Ideas_Delivery Dates

It should be on brands and marketers to let people know how soon their orders can arrive. 

11. Be a problem solver

Yeah, there’s nothing new in this phrase. However, people will really appreciate it if you help them choose the best present. For instance, some men do not know that women do not mix metals. Of course, we do wear rings and beads made of two or three types of metals, but we do not mix white beads with pink necklaces.

And if their wives wear engagement rings made of silver, then these women will not be able to wear new earrings made of the pink gold every day along with the silver ring. We want our accessory items to match. 

Being a Real Helper_Christmas Email Marketing Ideas

(email sample by Brighton)

Some women have no clue what fishing spinners their husbands need. And here, a helping hand of “Santa’s elf” will be highly appreciated.  

12. Mention your working hours 

If you are not going to stay online throughout the Christmas and New Year weekend, let customers know about it.

Christmas Email Marketing_Inform About Working Hours on Christmas

Just a brief note will be enough.

13. Remind customers New Year is coming

If you work in the HoReCa industry, it will be nice to remind customers that New Year is close. Being emotional about Christmas, people may totally forget about this holiday.

Christmas Newsletters Ideas_Remind About the New Year's Eve

It would be reasonable to send this email on December 26. Schedule this campaign if you do not plan on coming to the office this day :)

14. Express gratitude

When should you send such emails? Right, on Christmas Eve!

Thank all your customers for having been with you for quite a long time or for just joining your company. Would your business exist without them? Right, it wouldn’t. That is why the coming holidays are a good reason to thank people, to mention that you care about them. Emphasize they are not only your customers but also friends and maybe even a big family of yours.

Merry Christmas Emails_Wishes from Tom Raffield

Look at the example above. It says nothing but “thanks”.

Show your concern and appreciation.

Christmas email design

Now we want to share a compilation of our favorite Christmas email samples by famous brands.

1. Header

The header is the first email element our recipients see. Many companies ignore it in their Christmas newsletters, yet we find it very important.

Yes, your subscribers are already used to the standard colors of your company. And you are not obligated to change them. However, you can add “stars”, “Christmas balls”, “fireworks”, etc. in the header.


What I loved about these animated balls is that:

  • this brand did not change its entire header, just spiced it up with seasonal decorations;

  • they started preparing us for Christmas in October. Yes, even their Halloween newsletters already had this vivid header.

And I also loved this email header by Universal Orlando Resort.

Christmas Email Design_Festive Headers

It’s just beautiful. And also delivers important information about the dates of holidays.

2. Seasonal menu tabs

Yes, exactly. Why not add new tabs to your regular menu? This is a good idea, especially for those who make seasonal products like candies, toys, decorations which are meant for Christmas time.


Or another great example:

Christmas Email Design_Tabs

3. Embedded videos

What can easily spread the Christmas Spirit? Email video can. It will be lovely if you share a video where you and your big team wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Or it can be at least just a thematic video — help customers feel that Christmas is coming.


You can take such videos on your own or make one by using some popular online video makers

4. Photos of people with presents

Such photos will remind customers they can be late with presents for Christmas, they need to hurry. And also, it may convince subscribers, who were hesitating whether to get presents for everyone this year, to buy.

Photos of People with Presents_Christmas Emails.png

And also it makes them look for this holiday even more.

5. CSS-animation

CSS-animation is one of the hottest trends in 2019. It’s not heavy, renders across many email clients, yet it entertains customers.

Enliven Emails with Animations_The Snow Effect

Use this template

When using this Christmas HTML email template, you can replace our text with yours, work on the button’s design, and change the background color.

Important to note:

The snow effect renders on:

  • Apple Mail;

  • iPhone Mail;

  • Android Native Mail;

  • Thunderbird.

Other recipients will see the static image of snowflakes.

6. Team photo

If for some reason, the CEO of your company and your colleagues are way too shy to talk on the video, you can at least add a photo of the entire team.

I would love to get to know your company and employees better.


Not only did Brighton share the photo of the team, but also thanked customers for letting the brand be a part of the recipients’ lives.

7. GIFs in emails

If you feel like making your newsletters energetic, vivid — then add GIFs. It can be anything:

Snowflakes, Santa flying on his deer, sparkling Christmas tree, etc.

GIFs in Christmas Emails

Important to note:

According to the accessibility guidelines, we are supposed to use GIFs with three or fewer flashes per second. 

8. Colors and color combinations

If you think that your brand style will be kinda damaged if you use elements like Santa’s hat, snowballs, etc. — work on colors. That’s it.


Speaking of colors, which ones are the most appropriate for the Winter Holidays? Analyses prove that cold colors are more acceptable. Don’t hesitate to paint the body of your messages in blue and violet. And please do not overuse traditional green and red.


9. Engage with interactivity

All they talk about now at email and digital marketing conferences emails is interactivity in emails. Christmas is the best time for sending out interactive emails as they are meant first of all to entertain and astonish our recipients. The 1973 brand sure knows how to ignite the Christmas spirit.


What a magical Christmas newsletter!

10. Banners that are relatively close to Christmas

Who said that only fur trees, Santas and deer can set the mood? People having fun in the snow also deserve our attention.


11. Decorative elements

If playing with colors is not enough for you, but rich Christmas design is too much, you can try some decorative elements in between the blocks in your emails. It will let the recipients know that you are aware of the upcoming holidays, but the newsletter itself is not dedicated to Christmas.


12. Background

Why use backgrounds? They make your email complete, make your email look like a greeting card.

But, as we’ve said above, greeting cards may be blocked by email clients. But there is a way out — make it out of containers and add a festive background.

Still, the chances are these email clients will not even show the background. Here’s why we should also set a fallback color if the background is not displayed.


13. Footer

Regarding footer, for sure, no one is supposed to change it or exclude contact information from it. Never do it! But adding some holiday spirit will never harm.


Btw, this email does consist of stripes, we can even see them.

14. AMP-elements

AMP emails are multifunctional. They allow users to add items to carts, to see the remnants in stock, what colors are available, zoom product items in, etc. 

And, also they allow us to spice up email design. For instance, the AMP accordion allows hiding information into collapsible sections. 

AMP Accordion in Christmas Emails with Stripo

Join Stripo

Building AMP emails with Stripo is a piece of cake. You simply drag Accordion or Carousel block into your Christmas template, fill it in with necessary content, and your email is ready to go. No need to work with codes.

15. Trigger emails

Do not change the trigger emails’ design. You greet newcomers who just got registered with your website. Leave your welcome emails and order confirmation the way they are now.  

Enjoy the holidays

This year you have done enough. Christmas is the family holiday when you can rest and enjoy some time off! And do not forget to call your friends to thank them, too.

Christmas spirit is full of happiness, expectations of a better life, we are full of new ideas and strength to implement them.

Stripo has prepared a wide variety of Christmas and New Year email templates. Choose the one that you like best, in no time customize it down in accordance with your brand book. And your email is ready to go.

May the aforementioned Christmas email ideas that you decide to implement bring you success!

Join Stripo

*This blog post has been co-written by Hanna Kuznietsova, Chief Content Officer at and Filza Naveed, Content Marketing Specialist at ContactMonkey.

Be always wide awake in recent email marketing news, guides, articles and how-to’s