Browse The Report
- Nonprofit Email Deliverability & Engagement Benchmarks
- Nonprofit List Sizes
- Ask The Expert: Is List Segmentation Really That Important?
- Nonprofit Email Bounce Rates
- Nonprofit Email Open Rates
- Nonprofit Email Unsubscribe Rates
- Nonprofit Email Click-Through Rates
- Nonprofit Email Fundraising Performance
- Nonprofit Email Performance by Date & Time
- Email Sender Superlatives
- A Data-Driven Approach to Subject Lines & Preview Text
- Convey Positive Emotions in Subject Lines
- Ask the Expert: How Did You Use AI for Subject Line Sentiment Analysis?
- Words to Include (or Avoid) in Your Subject Lines
- Experiment with Emojis in Subject Lines
- Write Compelling Preview Text
- Words to Include (or Avoid) in Your Preview Text
- Put It All Together — Performance Benchmarks & Word Usage
- Creating Effective Emails
- Ask the Expert: What Should I Keep In Mind When Creating Compelling Emails?
- Tip #1 — Include Imagery in Your Emails
- Tip #2 — Pay Attention to Salutations
- Ask The Expert: Do Salutations Really Make a Difference?
- Tip #3 — Use the Word "You"
- Tip #4 — Make Your Message Scannable
- Ask The Expert: How Do I Create a Great Call to Action?
- Tip #5 — Include Great Calls to Action
- Put It All Together - Build Clear, Compelling Emails
- Lessons from the Most Engaging Email of 2022
- Data-Backed Insights for GivingTuesday and Year-End
- Methodology & Appendix
- About Neon One
End-of-Year Email Data
The last three days of December are some of the busiest fundraising days of the year. Should you send emails during this period? Or will your message get lost among the other updates and appeals your supporters receive?
Let’s take a look.
During this time frame in 2021, both large and small nonprofits sent an average of one email campaign to their supporters. In 2022, though, both groups upped this number to two total campaigns.
|Number of End-of-Year Email Campaigns Sent||2021||2022|
Average Email Performance Benchmarks
How do donors engage with end-of-year email campaigns? Are they more likely to open and respond to your messages? Or will your emails get lost in their inboxes?
Here’s what the data has to say.
Overall, engagement with end-of-year email campaigns is lower than emails sent during the rest of the year. But, remember, the emails in the year-round dataset include campaigns like newsletters, impact updates, and other types of communications. Seeing lower engagement here isn’t too surprising. Comparing end-of-year campaign benchmarks to GivingTuesday benchmarks, we can see a clearer picture of how audiences engage with both types of campaign.
Comparing engagement rates for GivingTuesday and end-of-year campaigns reveals that, as a general rule, GivingTuesday campaigns perform better than campaigns sent during the last three days of the year. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t send emails during this time period! There are lots of reasons engagement may be lower here. These campaigns remain an important part of a successful year-end fundraising strategy.
This does mean there are opportunities to adjust your email campaign during the end of the year to try to boost interactions. When we look more closely at performance metrics for small and large organizations, we can draw some more definite conclusions about steps you can take to boost your own engagement rates.
Email Performance by Day
Which of the three days is the best to send your end-of-year emails? A look at email performance benchmarks for December 29, 30, and 31, 2022 reveals some interesting insights.
|December 29||December 30||December 31||All Three Days|
|Average List Size||6243||4310||6175||5593|
|Amount Raised Per Campaign||$3671.73||$6998.54||$5804.26||$6177.35|
|Amount Raised Per Contact||$0.59||$1.62||$0.93||$1.10|
What Does This Mean?
Across nearly all metrics (apart from average list size), emails sent on December 30, 2022 outperformed campaigns sent on other days. Email audiences were more likely to open an email and click on a link, and campaigns sent on that day raised more, on average, than the other two days despite having the smallest average list sizes. The day with the second-highest engagement rates was December 29, but with one notable exception: Those campaigns raised an average of $2,505.62 less than emails sent on December 31, 2022.
What Do I Do With This Information?
You may want to try sending an email appeal on December 30. The other two days aren’t as clear-cut: You can choose to send on December 29, when engagement tends to be higher but fundraising totals tend to be lower, or on December 31, which may earn you lower engagement but better overall
As with any benchmark or best practice, you know what works best for your own email audiences! Do you see better fundraising results on December 29 and 31? Send those days! Do you get awful engagement on December 29? Don’t feel like you need to send an email that day.
Email Performance for Small Nonprofits
How can small nonprofits improve their year-end email performance? Let’s see what trends the data reveals:
You probably won’t be surprised that engagement during the end of the year is lower than averages for the rest of the year. Appeals usually include fewer opportunities to interact with different content than a newsletter or client success story! But look what happens when you compare these emails’ performance with campaigns sent on GivingTuesday:
Your audience is even more likely to engage with your end-of-year campaigns than they are with your GivingTuesday campaigns. That’s reason to celebrate!
Email Performance for Large Nonprofits
What about larger organizations? Will having a larger list change your audience’s willingness to engage with your email campaigns?
You’re probably not surprised by the fact that end-of-year campaigns get lower levels of engagement than campaigns sent during the rest of the year. After all, your appeals probably don’t include a variety of content and lots of different links the way your newsletters or impact updates do. To get a better feel for how your audience interacts with your messaging during the end of the year, let’s compare this group’s year-end campaign performance to their GivingTuesday results.
If you’re like most large organizations, you probably see lower engagement with year-end email campaigns than you do with GivingTuesday campaigns. And that’s okay! GivingTuesday is, by its nature, a fundraising day that thrives on digital channels.