Research busts popular assumptions around when to email

According to Pure 360, who analysed over 660,000 emails sent by 34 companies, there are distinct patterns in consumers' responses to different e-mail marketing promotions throughout the day.


They found that, contrary to popular assumptions, the volume of marketing emails opened drops markedly during the lunch hour. Just 9% of the emails send were opened between 9am and 2pm with 62% of those opened being news or magazine alerts rather than promotions on goods and services. Futhermore, almost half of all marketing emails were opened outside of office hours.



Using the research, Pure360’s team have identified patterns in consumers’ responses to different email marketing promotions throughout the day:



The Abyss (10pm to 9am)

This is an ineffective time to send email promotions – it’s like throwing them into a black hole.

Consumer AM (9am to 10am)

The second most prevalent opening time is at the beginning of the working day, with consumers allowing themselves to be distracted by offers on clothes, live events, restaurants and consumer goods.

Do Not Disturb (10am to Noon)

Consumers are not opening marketing emails, choosing instead to focus on work.

The Lunchtime News (Noon to 2pm)

Counter-intuitively, consumers are also unlikely to open marketing emails during their lunch, choosing Instead to spend time on news and magazine alerts.

In The Zone (2pm to 3pm)

In the immediate post-lunch period consumers remain focussed on work, responding only to email offers relating to financial services.

A Life-changing Afternoon (3pm to 5pm)

Job-related apathy sets in and consumers start thinking about their personal situation. As a result, more emails relating to property and financial services are opened between 3pm and 5pm than any other type of promotion.

Working Late (5pm to 7pm)

There is a dramatic rise in recipients opening holiday promotions during the period (17.9% of all emails promoting holiday promotions were opened in these two hours). Counter-intuitively, this is also the timeframe within which recipients are most likely to open B2B promotions (26.4%).

Last Orders (7pm to 10pm)

Recipients are more likely to respond to consumer promotions in their own time, with 23% being opened in this period. Offers on clothes, special interests such as sports and gym promotions (26% opened during this time) performed extremely well in this period.


Has this research been borne out by your own experience? Let us know !

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Ihubbusiness is an information hub for small businesses who wish to learn about internet marketing. The site was founded by Lola Bailey in 2010. Lola is a member of the Institute of Digital Marketing and has over 20 years sales and marketing experience. She is also a full-time copywriter at, a copywriter consultancy which she founded. Email:

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