Successful E-commerce Newsletter Email Subject Lines
Customer Retention, Customer Value Optimization, eCommerce Growth, Guest Posts

Want a Successful E-commerce Newsletter? Play to your Email Subject Lines

We all send emails. Regardless of the industry or purpose, we all communicate via emails and want our messages heard by the receiving party. But, how do we ensure that they actually click and read what we are sending? Further, how do we make sure that they respond as quickly as possible, instead of deferring it for an indefinite period? 

True, content of the email matters. But content is the second step. The first thing that a person will notice when you send an email and which would entice him or her to actually click and read is the subject line. 

The better your subject line, the more the chances of the recipient clicking on it, and the faster the responses. This holds true for all industries; but more specifically, eCommerce because we’re all receiving endless offers in our inbox every day. That’s what makes emails for customer engagement and retention, tougher. 

Would you like your clients stick to your brand? What about increasing your Customer Value?
You probably want them both.



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The average open rate ranges between 20-40%. Now while some may consider that healthy, there’s a lot that is being lost in terms of sales when you throw in the competition. 

After all, you’re going to be competing for those one-time discounts to keep your existing customers engaged. 

In this article, we’re taking you through some of the most effective email subject lines when it comes to keeping your existing customers engaged, and why they work towards improving customer retention. 

eCommerce newsletter email subject lines that actually work

There’s no one-subject-line-fits-all approach here. Depending on what your eCommerce business is all about and what you’re trying to promote in the email newsletter, the subject lines should vary.

Let this list of best email subject lines serve as inspiration for your next and tailor them to match your brand voice for the best results! 

#1 – “Find Your Perfect Fit”

Brand: Brilliant Earth

Why it works: Purchasing that perfect engagement ring is a once in a lifetime event. So how do you retain a shopper who has shown interest in buying from you? By helping them make an informed purchase. In this case, finding the right fit for the ring they want to buy. The more informed a purchase the shopper makes, the more likely they are to have a good experience with your brand and a high retention rate. 

# 2 – “Our #1 most asked question…”

Brand: Supergoop!

Why it works: Sunscreens are an essential part of our lives. However, many of us do not know which one to pick. Many of us are not even aware of our skin type. But given the subscribers of this brand’s email know it is about sunscreen and would be eager to know more, they would click on this email subject line. 

# 3 – “Never Compromise: Shop Stylish & Durable Design”

Brand: Industry West

Why it works: This subject line works well because it tackles two things that every person going for furnishing products wants: style and durability. Since they’re reaching out to their existing customers, this subject line acts as a reinforcement of what their brand stands for and the value they bring to them. Then within the email, they go on to make product recommendations to nudge another purchase. 

# 4 – “Free 2-Day Shipping — Today Only”

Brand: Everlane

Why it works: This subject line creates a sense of urgency. No customer is happy paying the shipping costs. Scrapping those and including it in a crisp and concise manner is a brilliant call-to-action to get a price-sensitive customer to make a purchase right away!

# 5 – “🎉 It’s Go Time! 🍽️”

Brand: Made in Cookware

Why it works: Emojis. Imagery always works. A simple phrase, combined with the mini everyday-use emojis convey the message loud and clear for the launch of something. In this case, the brand’s new collection. The subscriber immediately knows there’s big news in the email! 

#6 – “Machine Wash Cold, Line Dry”

Brand: Baggu

Why it works: It’s an ordinary line. But what makes it extraordinary, is the fact these are not clothes that are being talked about, these are bags. This line will intrigue the subscribers of the brand as to how the product is actually good and reusable, with minimum fuss about the cleaning. And that is why, this simple email subject line works and coaxes the readers to click and read through.

#7 – “On the Way”

Brand: Girlfriend Collective

Why it works: This is the phrase used for intimating that an order is on its way to reach the customer. And thus, it has a major recall value. Using this here induces the customer to click on the email, and the content therein further encourages them to come back to the brand as it tackles two more things; inclusivity and sustainability.

#8 – “Pick the Perfect Case for your Smartphone”

Brand: Kasemakers

Why it works: Because it is easy and effective. No jargon, just a plain message of protection and aesthetics for your phone, something that a customer is continually thinking about. Especially considering how most of us tend to check email on our mobile phones.

#9 – “Behind the Design”

Brand: Jack Mason

Why it works: Watch lovers dig vintage designs and the multiple stories behind those. A brand which gives them a frequent dosage of the trivia is one that they not only buy from but also relate to. This is a launch and preorder mail for a new range of watches, but it pulls back their customer’s interest in their brand by sharing a behind the scenes first.  

#10 – “What’s on Your Plate?”

Brand: Ritual

Why it works: Health begins at home. This health & wellness products brand for women knows that directly marketing their products may not be as fruitful as marketing the good food habits and adding their products as supplements. And that is exactly what they are pandering to, with this email subject line. It makes their customers instantly about the last purchase they made from their brand and if it’s time to refuel. 

So, what do we learn from the aforementioned email subject line examples?

When you understand the crux of writing email subject lines that truly capture the essence of your reader, these examples will only drive you further, rather than limiting you.

Here are the few core principles of writing awesome subject lines for your emails, that you have to keep in mind:

1. Personalize, personalize, and personalize some more

Do you know personalized email subject lines have a 26% more chance of getting opened by the recipient than the ones that have general subject lines? 

Including names and including the word “you” adds a personalized touch to the email and impacts the psyche of the reader in a better way. You can further use segmentation to create groups of shoppers based on their last interaction and create dynamic content, accordingly. 

2. Less is more

Ecommerce email marketing has moved from desktops to tablets and mobile phones, with limited character limit and time as well. Thus, every second and every character counts. 

Make sure that you create a subject line that effectively packs a punch in the choicest few words that you put in there. But remember to keep it simple and use words that make your subscribers want to engage.

3. Use numbers

Don’t believe us? Well, statistics prove that nothing makes a person click on the email better than facts and figures. Use them in your subject lines. 

Not everyone is a fan of flowery language that caters to the emotions. There are people who want their time’s worth if they are spending it on first reading your email and then downloading and reading your newsletter. Give them a preview of what they have to gain, from the email subject line itself. 

4. Use your preview text wisely

This is one part of the email which no one really pays attention to. Make sure your preview text is different and even more impactful than your email subject line. 

The preview text that the server takes by default is boring and does not appeal. Change the game and make that text one that complements your email subject line. Ideally one that gives a summary of what your email has to say.

5. Use positive words

Use encouraging and positive words in your subject lines. Studies have proved that people have a higher chance of opening an email with a subject line that contains positive words. Take cue from the ones mentioned in the list below.

6. A/B test your email subject lines

Make use of modern analytical tools and identify your customer and ecommerce business goals. It is extremely important to invest in data and analytics and know your customer. 

A/B testing is one effective way of doing it, wherein you can use different subject line approaches for different campaigns and then measure the performances continuously to figure out which type of subject line works better. Make use of an eCommerce analytics tool to understand how shoppers interact with your email campaigns. 

Keep these principles in mind and you are sorted. Well, almost. 

Along with these, you need to know how time-sensitive your content is, add call-to-actions, create crisp and clear content, and make sure that your email subject lines are viewed the same across all devices. 

Also, remember to keep your emails off the SPAM folder with these best practices: 15 techniques to avoid hitting spam

Do you really need to be crafty with your eCommerce email subject lines? 

Most ecommerce brands stick to using discounts in their email subject lines to capture customer attention. 

But when everyone is taking the same approach, it’s the ones that differ that are successful at getting subscribers to open their emails. So yes, focusing on your email subject line is important. 

Think about the last email you opened, for instance!

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