Resources Hub » Blog » Best (and Worst) Practices for Your Welcome Emails

You probably know you should have a welcome series, but you might not understand exactly what that means. But welcome emails are just as they sound: messages sent to new consumers and subscribers with the intention of introducing them to your brand. These emails introduce subscribers to the opportunities your business has to offer.

A welcome email or an entire welcome series generally gives subscribers a quick look into the brand, the story behind the business, and what the brand has to offer consumers. They’re also a wonderful tool that can be used to personalize and inform the customer journey.

You only get one first impression, so why not make it count?

This process can be done quickly with the right welcome email, and we’ll show you some outstanding examples below. But first, let’s talk about how effective these emails can be.

How effective are welcome emails?

Welcome emails are extremely effective, not only as a way to make consumers feel appreciated, but they also boost subscriber engagement naturally.

When it comes to open rates, welcome emails have a 91.43% open rate and average four times the open rate and five times the average click-through rate of a standard email marketing campaign.

When generating click-throughs and revenue, welcome emails can contribute to a 196% lift in unique clicks. Welcome emails with special offers and promo codes can even boost revenue by 30% per email, when compared to those without offers.

Before talking about what to include in your welcome email, you’ll want to consider when you send it to subscribers.

With welcome emails, sooner is better:

10 Essential Elements of an Effective Welcome Email

Image Source: Return Path

According to Return Path, 75% of marketers say they’ve sent welcome emails on the same day subscribers registered. In terms of engagement, new leads are most engaged within the first 48 hours of subscribing, making early welcome emails crucial to campaign success.

Don’t give consumers a chance to forget your brand. They signed up because of an initial interest in your business, so capitalize on that interest by sending an email right away.

What to include in your welcome email

When crafting effective welcome emails, personalization and special offers are ideal. Let’s look at what marketers should include in their welcome emails to see positive results.

1. An engaging subject line

Before a subscriber even clicks on a brand’s welcome email, the first thing they’ll notice is the email’s subject line.

Companies should make their intentions clear when crafting welcome email subject lines. This can be done through both a “welcome” greeting in the headline and an attention-grabbing element.

Companies should make their intentions clear when crafting welcome email subject lines.

Image Source: Campaign Monitor

2. A warm greeting

A warm greeting is more than simply saying hello.

When a new user subscribes to your brand, they provide you with information like their name or business type. Welcome your new subscribers by name, and if possible, segment them into a specific list so you can send them the most relevant content possible.

Emails with personalized greetings are 25% more likely to be opened by readers.

Emails with personalized greetings are 25% more likely to be opened by readers.

Image Source: Campaign Monitor

3. Give consumers something to do

Once you’ve welcomed consumers to your brand, you’ll want to offer them a relevant action.

This can be done in a variety of ways.

  • Provide subscribers with some recent content from your blog. This can be something that relates to their preferences (e.g. gated content) or currently trending industry news.
  • Ask subscribers to add your brand to their “safe senders” email list, so you don’t end up in the spam folder.
  • Ask your readers to provide more information about themselves. Does your preference center allow users to personalize their interests? Provide a link so they can edit their profile, then send emails based on their needs.
  • Give your readers links to your social accounts so they can share your content with their friends. This also gives them another direct way to contact you.

4. Special offers

A welcome email is an excellent way to reward new subscribers for joining your list and following along with your brand. Promo codes and coupons not only show consumers that you want them to stick around, but that you appreciate their time.

This welcome email from Michaels thanks new subscribers and offers a 20% promo code. What’s more, the copy prompts users to set their personal preference on their shopping site.

Best (and Worst) Practices for Your Welcome Emails

Image Source: HubSpot

5. Include an unsubscribe link

Many marketers shudder at the thought of their email list shrinking, especially when they just received a new lead.

While you may not want to think about users unsubscribing inside their welcome email, it’s required by law to allow users to opt-out at any time.

While you may not want to think about users unsubscribing inside their welcome email, it’s required by law to allow users to opt-out at any time, easily.

Image Source: Really Good Emails

What you should avoid in a welcome email

Knowing what to include in a welcome email is essential, but so is knowing what not to include. Consider the reasons you’ve marked other brands’ emails as spam. Why wouldn’t you the marketer learn from you the consumer?

Keep those tactics that didn’t work for you in mind as we cover some of the worst things a brand can do with their welcome emails.

Don’t be impersonal

Yes, many email campaigns are run by an automation process of some kind, but that doesn’t mean your email should read as if a robot wrote it. Don’t send out the same generic email template to everyone.

Simply adding your subscriber’s name to an email is a good start, but why stop there?

Adding relevant products similar to what subscribers have viewed already on your site is another way to personalize a welcome email. So is recommending follow-up products or services based on initial purchases.

List segmentation can help create campaigns that are personalized for each of your subscribers.

Remember, your subscribers are human, so add that human touch to the emails you send.

Don’t make demands from your subscribers

While you want to suggest users try certain products or read specific blog articles, you never want to demand something of them.

This may seem trivial, but the more you demand from your subscribers—even if you don’t mean it as a demand—the more turned off your subscribers may become, increasing the chances of them unsubscribing from your emails or marking them as spam.

Remember, the ultimate goal for your welcome email is to show the consumer that you care and want to provide them with a product or service to suit their needs. In other words, you care about consumers, not just their money.

Don’t spam subscribers with too frequent or irrelevant emails

One of the most significant email marketing mistakes a brand can make is sending too many emails. Another one is sending irrelevant content to the reader.

Statistically, nearly 69% of U.S. email users unsubscribe from brands because they email too frequently.

Other stats show that 45.8% of subscribers flag emails as spam because brands send too many, too frequently, while another 41.6% flag them because a brand sends irrelevant content.

While this data may seem to suggest that you should limit the number of emails you send, a welcome series is an excellent way to keep your subscribers engaged.

Image Source: Neil Patel

A welcome series is an excellent way to find out what your subscribers want because one man’s “too frequent” is another man’s “not frequent enough.”

So include a preference center that allows your subscribers to tell you exactly the kind of content they want to receive and how often. You’ll take the guesswork out of your strategy and know you’re always delivering the best experience to every inbox.

Remember how we said adding a personal touch to those welcome emails will increase their open rate? When you make it relevant to each subscriber and their individual needs, they’ll continue to come to you for solutions instead of unsubscribing down the line.

Remember, you don’t want to overload them, but you do want to keep them engaged.

Wrap up

A welcome email is an excellent opportunity to both welcome new subscribers to your brand and guide them to the most relevant information or product you have to offer. To write an effective welcome email, be sure to include:

  • An engaging subject line
  • A warm greeting
  • An action for the customer
  • An unsubscribe option

When subscribers give you their information, they’re expecting you to provide them with valuable benefits and treat them as unique individuals. This is why you want to come off as professional, yet relatable when you fire off your welcome emails.

Above all, send the kind of email you would want to receive.

Ready to start designing your next batch of welcome emails with confidence? Check out our free welcome email templates and transactional email templates to help refresh your email designs in minutes. 

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This blog provides general information and discussion about email marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.
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