Coming up with Black Friday email campaigns can be overwhelming. Not only do you have to make sure all the puzzle pieces fit together and that you start marketing at the right time (some brands start their offers more than two weeks before the actual event), you also have to think about Black Friday content and subject lines.
Here are some of the best Black Friday email examples to get your creativity flowing—even better, all of these can be scheduled and automated via Shopify Email so you can sit back and relax.
Table of contents
8 inspirational Black Friday email campaigns
- The simple sale reminder email
- The eye-catcher
- The free gift email
- The Black Friday VIP access email
- The quirky email
- The urgency email
- The mission-driven email
- The text-only email
A finely crafted Black Friday email marketing campaign can grow brand loyalty, strengthen and expand your customer base, and increase sales. Here are eight inspirational email campaigns to consider this Black Friday:
1. The simple sale reminder email
Subject: Up to 40% off 😱
What it is: A simple and well-executed email from bra brand Pepper announcing its sitewide Black Friday event.
Why it works: This email is business-forward, but delivered in a fun and on-brand way that clearly announces Pepper’s Black Friday sale. It delivers the key elements customers need to know in a snapshot: the brand’s name, when the sale event is happening, the savings amount , and a focused call to action (CTA) to “Shop Now” before the best items sell out. Keeping things simple is often the best way to go.
How to implement it: Take the same simple approach to your Black Friday email campaigns. Have a clear subject line with the sale or discount, and include a call to action that brings customers to your discount landing page.
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2. The eye-catcher
Subject: Just a reminder, you get Black Friday deals first!
What it is: HUM Nutrition uses bold colors, an animated Early Access bar, and eye-catching imagery to announce its Black Friday weekend sale.
Why it works: The fun and engaging illustrations from HUM stand out against the vibrant hot pink background, and counters more muted sale announcements that may be hitting customer inboxes during the holiday season. The text portion is limited and tells people what kind of discounts to expect, what code to use, and where to begin shopping for the biggest sale of the year—leaving the illustrations as a focal point of the email.
How to implement it: Start using illustrations and unique imagery in your Black Friday email campaigns, especially if that style aligns with the visual identity of your brand.
Keeping your most important information above the fold is important.
Learn More: How to Write an Effective Welcome Email
3. The free gift email
Subject: HOLD-UP! Black Friday Sale is HERE?
What it is: The Detox Market offers a free gift to sweeten its tiered discount strategy, making a full-size product available to customers who spend more than $200.
Why it works: Customers are enticed to The Detox Market’s online store by the promise of a free gift, giving them an opportunity to showcase various products from their catalog. The tiered structure also incentivizes increased spend.
The email design is simple yet effective, with a flashing effect on the headline text and a button to make it eye-catching.
How to implement it: You can still participate in a Black Friday email campaign even if your business doesn’t typically discount or you can’t afford to lower your prices. Or, use a free gift to encourage more spending. Offer incentives such as a free gift with a minimum purchase amount, which can be done easily within Shopify or with an app from the Shopify App Store. The Black Friday sales give you a reason to contact your customers, so email them with the offer you’ve created. Keep your emails simple—when it comes to copy, less is often more.
4. The Black Friday VIP access email
Ensuring its most loyal fans are happy before it starts promoting its more general Black Friday campaigns helps with customer retention and satisfaction levels. It can also kick start sales and create a buzz around the brand.
How to implement it: Create a Black Friday email campaign specifically for your existing customers that invites them to take part in your Black Friday event before it officially starts. Offer a bigger discount, special perks, and a limited amount of time for them to make a purchase.
5. The quirky email
Subject: Take 20% off site wide!!
What it is: The Happy Goat Coffee Company uses emojis to add personality and a touch of humor to promote its Black Friday weekend sale.
Why it works: This email looks a lot different than the typical Black Friday sale email. There’s an image of the brand’s signature smiling goat—but wearing a holiday hat. These humorous touches are added with celebratory and “mind blown” emojis.
The email clearly announces the launch of Happy Goat Coffee Co.’s ongoing Black Friday sale while appealing to the emotions of its target audience: coffee lovers and aficionados. The straightforward marketing approach emphasizes the sitewide Black Friday sale, but also gives a wink to its upcoming Cyber Monday sale.
There’s not a lot of copy in this email, but it’s still effective at conveying what Happy Goat Coffee Co.’s Black Friday campaign is all about.
How to implement it: Have fun with your marketing. If it suits your brand, experiment with unique subject lines for your emails and use humorous and relatable images.
You don’t need a lot of copy to convey a message in your Black Friday emails, and you also don’t need to promote several products—promote your sale with one product (or a select few) instead. Consider choosing your bestselling or most interesting products.
6. The urgency email
Subject: Easy *early* access to Black Friday
What it is: Adidas evokes a sense of urgency with an email that reminds customers it’s the last day to join its free membership program and be first in line to unlock special access to its Black Friday sales event—up to 70% off.
Why it works: Adidas uses urgency throughout the email. “Ends today,” “Last day,” and “While you still can!” are all phrases that create a sense of immediacy. Even the subject line expresses urgency with the added incentive of money off to influence customers.
Of course, the brand's personality shines through in this email as well, with language like “the 3-Stripes sale event.”
How to implement it: Learn to create urgency and scarcity in your email marketing, especially on the Black Friday Cyber Monday weekend. Create urgency through copywriting and your use of emails to remind your customers that your sale will be ending soon. Also, when your products are selling fast, tell people!
7. The mission-driven email
Subject: Black Friday needs a fix
What it is: Patagonia uses Black Friday as an opportunity to encourage customers to repair their old clothes, rather than buying new ones. Instead of trying to woo customers in-store with discounts, it entices with the promise of repair workshops and supplies, with the headline “If it’s broke, fix it!”
Why it works: Most email subject lines during this period include a discount and a deadline to buy—this subject line challenges Black Friday by taking a purposefully different approach.
This strategy aligns with the founder’s decision to transfer ownership of the company to a climate-focused nonprofit. To make this connection clear, the email links to the founder’s letter at the bottom.
How to implement it: If you’re tired of running the same Black Friday email campaign every year, or your customers have grown to expect the same from you, change things up. Consider making this year’s Black Friday email all about your mission and values. It could be your opportunity to give a little back while also creating a positive brand image for your store.
8. The text-only email
Subject: Hours left for 25% off 🖤
What it is: Midnight Paloma foregos splashy imagery in favor of text. This personalized email is sent from the founder, Tayler, and speaks directly to the customer, encouraging the shopper to check out the gift guide to pick up a present for people on their holiday list—and themselves!
Why it works: Today’s shoppers crave personalization. This email feels like a personal note from the founder, speaking directly to you. It also offers a discount code and link to helpful content for holiday shoppers.
Many brands use the scattergun approach by sending a generic discount email to their entire customer list. By suggesting relevant products to each shopper, Midnight Paloma deepens its connection with customers and creates a unique experience.
How to implement it: Draft a personal-feeling note that’s not embellished with imagery—let the text stand alone. Personalize the contents using email customer segmentation and data to find the products customers have previously shown an interest in. Create campaigns that remind shoppers about products in their cart, or products they have checked out before. Don’t forget to also add an incentive with your Black Friday discount.
How to structure your Black Friday email campaign
- Announce the sale in advance
- Give in-store details
- Announce the start of sale
- Remind when the sale is ending
- Announce start of Cyber Monday
Crafting the ideal emails for your Black Friday marketing campaign takes strong copywriting skills and targeted messaging. Consider these tips for guidance:
1. Announce the sale in advance
Get shoppers excited about your upcoming Black Friday event. Create a buzz and let them know what kind of discounts to expect. If you’re not running a sales campaign and are instead choosing to focus on activism or mission-driven activity, send an announcement about that, too. Ideally, send your sale announcement email a few weeks before BFCM and again a few times leading up to the start of Black Friday. Schedule your sales announcement in advance. Tools like Shopify Email can help.
What to include in your sale announcement email:
- When your Black Friday deals start
- How long your Black Friday event will run
- What discounts customers can expect
- Where customers can go to unlock discounts
- Product suggestions based on past shopping behavior
2. Give in-store details
Black Friday started as an in-store shopping event, although it has evolved to include online as well. Remember its roots by sending a retail-specific email about any in-store deals you’re running during BFCM. Similarly, let shoppers know how they can unlock discounts, what products they can save big money on, and which stores you’re running the promotions in.
Send your in-store sale details ahead of time by scheduling an email one or two weeks in advance. The key is to land in shoppers’ inboxes when they’re thinking about Black Friday so they can plan ahead—which is integral to brick-and-mortar Black Friday shopping.
3. Announce the start of sale
Announce the kick-off of your Black Friday event by sending an email as soon as your discounts are activated. That way, shoppers are engaged early on. Remind them again where they can tap into the discounts. Suggest a few products they might enjoy, and highlight the discount to drive engagement and incentivize your customers.
4. Remind when the sale is ending
As the Black Friday sale winds down, continue to drive extra sales by sending a wrap-up email. Remind shoppers that they still have time to benefit from major discounts and point them to landing pages with popular items through product links. You might add an extra, final incentive at this point, such as a free gift, free delivery, or a higher percentage off to drive more conversions—and put you over the finish line with more sales.
5. Announce start of Cyber Monday
As Black Friday ends, Cyber Monday begins. Start contacting shoppers quickly to remind them the deals aren’t over yet. There’s yet another opportunity to enjoy more discounts on Cyber Monday.
Make sure to highlight what kind of discounts shoppers can unlock, when they can unlock them, and how they can accomplish that. Finally, add a call to action to direct people to your site.
Don’t forget your Black Friday email automations
Black Friday is a busy time of year, so expect to be juggling multiple marketing efforts simultaneously, including upcoming Cyber Monday and future holiday campaigns. Help your campaigns run smoothly by implementing email automations with Shopify Email.
Not only will this eliminate any last-minute scrambles, but it can help you win sales over the shopping weekend by reaching customers at the right time.
Shopify Email features a collection of drag-and-drop templates that make setting up email marketing automations easy in just a few clicks.
Ready to get going on your BFCM email automations? Here are some additional ideas to get you started:
- First purchase upsell email. When a customer makes a purchase on Black Friday, send them an automated follow up that includes an upsell to increase average order value(AOV) and expose them to other products in their range.
- Product browse automation. Send an automated email when someone has looked at, but not yet purchased, a product. They may only need a nudge to change interest into a buy.
- Abandoned cart automation. Use an abandoned cart template to win back shoppers who have shown previous interest but, for some reason, haven’t purchased. Remind them that they still have products in their cart and may want to take another look. Tack on an extra Black Friday discount to encourage them to complete checkout.
- Welcome email. Send a “Hello!” email to new customers when they join your marketing list. There’s a chance you’ll get an influx of new subscribers during Black Friday, and this can help with brand awareness as you cultivate new customers.
Get started on your Black Friday email campaigns
If email marketing isn’t a large part of your growth strategy, take the time to learn why it’s important for your business. If your email list is small, start building it now to maximize your Black Friday Cyber Monday events..
With the right amount of engaged subscribers and well-crafted emails, your business can have a profitable BFCM.
Want to absolutely crush it, though? Have a look at this BCFM checklist to position your store for success this holiday season.
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Black Friday email campaigns FAQ
How do you write a good Black Friday email?
Here’s a simple Black Friday email template:
Subject Line: Get Ready for the Biggest Black Friday Shopping Event of the Year!
Dear [Name], It's that time again—the biggest Black Friday shopping event of the year is right around the corner! We’re excited to bring you amazing deals on all the items you’ve been eyeing, from the hottest tech to the latest fashions. Whether you’re shopping for yourself or for a special someone, you’ll find something perfect. Don’t miss out on the best Black Friday deals of the year!
Visit [Website] on Friday, November 29, for exclusive discounts and promotions. Plus, get free shipping on orders over $[amount].
Happy shopping! Sincerely, [Your Name]
How many emails should I send for Black Friday?
The number of emails you should send for Black Friday depends on the size of your contact list and the type of content you plan to send. Generally, it's best to keep emails limited to two or three emails a week. It's also important to consider the timing and frequency of your emails. For example, sending too many in a short period of time can lead to email fatigue, while sending emails too far apart can lead to customers forgetting about your promotion.
How do you announce a Black Friday sale?
Announce Black Friday sales in a way that is engaging and enthusiastic. Examples include:
- We're excited to announce our Black Friday Sale!
- Starting on November 23rd, save big on a variety of products, with up to 50% off select items.
- Don't miss out on these incredible deals—shop now and get the best deals of the year! #BlackFriday #BlackFridaySale #ShopNow