September 1, 2006, 12:00 AM

Delivering the (e-)mail

(Page 2 of 2)

A low-cost avenue

By working smarter with existing resources while controlling costs, web retailers expect a sizeable return on their investment in e-mail marketing, the survey finds. Interestingly, compared to the rising cost of paid search, which can absorb up to 50% of a big retailer’s total annual online marketing budget, e-mail marketing remains relatively inexpensive. For instance, 41.6% of all retailers taking part in the research spend less than 1% of their total annual marketing budgets on e-mail. That compares with 31.3 % that spend between 1% and 5%, 13.8% that commit 6% to 10%, 5.6% that spend from 11% to 15%, 3.8% from 16% to 25% and 4.1% with e-mail budgets that account for 25% of their overall marketing budgets.

But even with a limited budget, the survey finds that retailers are counting on-and getting-more e-mail sales. A full 26.9% of retailer respondents derive 11% or more of their sales from e-mail marketing. And another 23.8% get 6% to 11% of their sales from e-mail, leaving 49.4% who report less than 5% of their total sales comes from e-mail programs.

Web merchants across the board appear satisfied with their e-mail programs. 57.4% of respondents to the survey report that sales from e-mail as a proportion of total sales are much higher or somewhat higher than a year ago.


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