Welcome emails start your relationship right and get new subscribers interacting with your brand. Studies show that people who opened the first email are significantly more likely to read future emails. And those who don’t read welcome messages tend to interact less with future messages from the sender.
Subscribers also opened welcome emails at a significantly higher open rate than other marketing emails.
Since people are engaged with your brand and are more likely to open the first email, it’s important to get it right.
In this post, we’ll share welcome email examples, tips, and strategies to help you craft the perfect welcome email sequence that engages with your audience to keep them wanting to hear from you.
We’re also going to do some unsolicited critiquing of a couple of companies and their onboarding welcome campaigns and what we like and what we don’t. You can use this to get inspiration for your campaigns as we look at how other companies are doing.
Here are a couple of tips to get you started:
To help you get inspiration for your campaigns, let’s take an in-depth look at a couple of onboarding campaigns for different types of businesses and industries.
Slack, a messaging platform, knows you’ll only continue using it (and eventually become a paying customer) if your team starts using it too—so this is what they send to people who create a team on the platform:
If there are several important actions a user must take, then you can also choose to send one email for each of those actions as part of the onboarding campaign. For example, slack asks its users to download the mobile app:
When someone joins your list, they are expressing their interest in your business even though they might not have purchased your product yet. They might be looking around and exploring other store options. Since they have shown interest and they might be shopping around, it’s a perfect time to encourage them to purchase from you.
What are the key values that set your brand apart from other businesses? What’s special about your brand and what can you do to help the customers feel more connected?
Pro tip: By sharing your values and mission, people get a feel for the messaging behind your product or service.
Here’s an example of Ritual, where they share their mission, promise, and what they stand for. They have also featured their top-selling products and what it does.
When subscribers join your email list, they are most engaged with your brand. You can use this opportunity to ask them to connect on your social media channels. When they connect with you on social media, they can read more of your posts, which will further build trust with your company.
To make new customers feel more welcome and connected to your brand, invite them to engage with your brand’s community. Lush does this perfectly by showing what’s in their social feed instead of only showing a social icon.
Welcome your new customers with a one-time welcome code. Promotion will always make more sales, but understand which offers are more likely to convert for your brand. Instead of offering discounts, you can also give extra bonuses, free shipping, special offers, one-time off, free trial, etc.
Bloomscape sends a short email to greet the new subscribers, share the welcome code, and encourages them to purchase by mentioning their free shipping and 30-day guarantee rewards.
90% of consumers look at product reviews before making a purchase. If you have any testimonials or positive reviews from customers, you can highlight them in your email.
In this example, The Good For Company shares some great testimonials from their clients. By including a picture of their client, they have made the email more personal and relatable. The typography, colors, and message are also great.
Include a personal welcome message from a staff member or the owner of the company. You can see how Holly, founder of Supergoof shows her photo and a welcome message to make the email more inviting. She also offers 10% off to incentivize people who subscribed to join her email.
Tell them what to expect in your emails and when to expect and the benefits they will get by joining the email list. Below is a simple email from Glossier.
1) Drive people to your store or website: Provide a link to your website. Add links to your relevant landing pages.
2) Focus on products and categories that convert: When thinking about which products or categories to feature in your early messages, make sure to showcase those most people are willing to purchase sooner. Maybe this could be one of your popular best-selling products/services.
3) Connect with your audience and personalize your email message: Make a great first impression. People get bombarded with many emails from different companies – all you need to do to stand out is to care about them.
You can personalize your welcome email by providing information and content that’s relevant to how they signed up or what they signed up for.
– If they signed up directly, provide brand/product/service information.
– If they are a new customer, you can cross-sell similar products.
– For someone who signed up for your freebie or document, you can provide the link to download it.
– If they asked for a demo for your software/app, you can share tips on how to get started.
4) Choose the best CTA: The main purpose of welcome emails or any email is to turn email subscribers into customers. Your CTA should be clear and obvious what your customers want to do. The copy and cta buttons should also be easy to find. It is clear what the CTA intends you to do.
Emails sent right after the subscriber has joined your email list typically have a higher engagement rates and click rates —that’s why it’s a great time to include an important call to action.
Some of these actions can be:
1. Completing their user profile
2. Making a purchase
3. Check out your most popular content
4. Inviting friends or other users
5. Downloading an app
Even though welcome email is usually a single campaign, some companies might use several “tiers” of onboarding:
Onboarding new subscribers: To welcome people who opt-in your email list but are not customers or users of the product (for example, when they join the email newsletter or download a lead magnet or sending a confirmation email)
Onboarding new users/customers: To welcome people who have signed up for a product (for example, a web application like Airbnb) or became a paying customer (for example, purchased a private consulting call). Here is how Monday.com welcomes their new customer and also shares the benefits of using their app:
Onboarding can be more than one email. Here are some examples:
Airbnb sends 5 onboarding emails over 21 days, each of them explaining a different part of the tool. To create your onboarding campaign, you just need to identify which are the most important actions a subscriber must take after signing up and ask them to do exactly that.
Let’s look at an onboarding campaign for a SaaS business: Typeform. Here’s Typeform’s onboarding campaign for new free trial users.
Email Subject line: Welcome to Typeform
Goal: Introduce Subscribers to the Typeform Story
They are saying, this is how they started and why they are different in a story-telling format.
So down towards the bottom, they added a casual call to action.
Later on the email, they set expectations on how often they will be sending you the email over the couple of days. They’re letting the user know what to expect and what’s coming down the pipeline.
Subject Line: Unboxing Typeform: Create (1 of 4)
Goal: Help users create their first form
The goal here is to help users create their very first form. So they give you this quick start guide that shows you a little bit more about the product and how it works. They’re trying to nudge you to create your first type of form.
They also give you a preview of the next email. It’s very clear and they are honest about it that you’re going to get one email a day for four days and they show you the next email that’s coming.
Email 3: Unboxing Typeform: Communicate (2 of 4)
Goal: To teach users how Typeform integrates with other tools.
They show all the third party platforms and applications that Typeform works with – assuming you would see some benefit in that if you were using one of those integrations.
They also preview the next email as well in this one. So up next, Analyse, which is their next email coming up.
Subject line: Unboxing Typeform: Analyse (3 of 4).
Goal: Showcase Typeform’s analytics features
They go through all the different variations and formats of their analytics product. They’re pretty proud of their analytics features. It’s very feature-focused, and they are showcasing that.
Subject Line: Unboxing Typefrom: Succeed (4 of 4)
They share case studies and examples of people that are using Typeform and succeeding – giving you confidence and inspiration that you should sign up as well.
A couple of things, we liked about Typeform:
1) It structures onboarding as like a four part mini course, which has some merit to it.
2) Clear steps that go from the very beginning phases into launching your own forms from scratch. If they know there are a lot of free trial users who are entry level and need help with that, this is a good idea as long as they have a clear understanding of who their customer avatar is.
What we didn’t like about this onboarding campaign:
1) The copy focused a lot on features and not on benefits. It was very focused on them rather than why analytics is good for users’ forms.
As a user, I don’t really care that typeform has analytics. I want to know how that can help me grow my business. So in that situation, Typeform should be a little bit more focused on the benefit to the user and not just focus on their own product features.
2) Each email has 5-6 different CTAs – it would be better to focus on achieving a single goal. Each email had too many calls to action – every single email should have one call to action only.
3) There’s no clear call to action to becoming a paying customer at the end of the campaign. A campaign like this should have focused on making users sign up right now, click the link down below, and they didn’t close with that.
It was interesting, but I think they missed the basics here and they’re squandering a bit of an opportunity.
To conclude, focus on benefits and not features, one CTA, and make it very clear to move the user to the next funnel.
Next, let’s look at an onboarding campaign for an e-commerce business Beyond Yoga.
When you create a Beyond Yoga account, you can roll in and enter your email to get a promo code discount code.
Along with customizing your experience, you can check off the box into newness, maternity, extended sizes or special collections. It’s specifically designed and optimized for women buying yoga apparel with different kinds of variations in them. Let’s go over their email campaigns now:
Subject Line: You’ve Made It, Welcome!
Goal: To turn subscribers into first-time buyers
The first email gives you 10 percent off and does a very direct kind of fun, kind of quirky photo of a girl wearing their yoga apparel.
Subject line: a love note from us.
Goal: To tell the beyond yoga story. Here’s a quick snippet of that email:
They talked a little bit more about the story and who their customer avatar is and why we should love them as a potential customer or why we should love them.
Subject Line: Essential plus soft athleisure you need.
Goal: To explain the main benefit or differentiator of their products, athleisure
They have included some quality product photos in this email.
Subject Line: Let’s connect
Goal: To get subscribers to follow Beyond Yoga Instagram account.
In this email, they’re showing their Instagram page. The call to action is to follow them and a couple of pictures from their Instagram here.
Subject Line: Let’s chat.
Goal: To get people to complete their account information.
Here’s a couple of snippets from that:
If users haven’t fully completed their accounts, this is a nudge to complete that.
Emails: 6 to 13
Goal: Showcase different product collections
They showcase different sorts of products and offers they have on the site.
What we liked about Beyond Yoga
There are a couple of things we liked about these email sequences:
1) Good product photography and visuals. High-quality product photography is really important where female-oriented customers seem to like more premium athletic wear.
2) They also got the basics right, one call to action per email. They asked the user to do a single thing on every email, which is very important.
What we didn’t like:
1) It wasn’t mobile-optimized: There was lots of copy inside of the images. That’s just not acceptable today anymore. You need to have all of your emails mobile optimized.
2) There wasn’t any personalization based on the interest users selected at the beginning. When the users tell you what they want, that’s a very obvious automation flow that you should be setting up in your email service provider.
3) Welcome email subject line could have been a little bit more compelling.
Those are two examples of onboarding campaigns and some of the things we liked and some of the things that we did.
Woot, that’s it!
I hope you got tons of ideas, tips, and inspiration to create your welcome email campaigns.
Don’t forget to download our welcome email templates below, if you want to write powerful welcome emails that engage your subscribers to be your customers!
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