How important are email newsletters to your conversion rates? Well, if you’re like 59% of other marketers, then email is the single most effective marketing channel for generating revenue.

That statistic alone makes it clear that email marketing deserves our attention. But there are a lot of aspects to factor into designing an email that actually does something, rather than one that goes more or less directly to the “spam” folder.

Here are five pointers on how to design email newsletters that actually convert, starting from the ground up.

Brand Everything

Obviously, you’ve worked hard at establishing a relationship with your customers, and that should be reflected in your emails. If they’ve signed up for that newsletter, they know who you are and what they can expect. Once you’re writing the email, it is not the time to play coy.

Brand, brand, brand.

Your customer should know exactly who that email is from, and what it’s likely to involve. Include your header image as well as a logo to communicate your brand, and the colors and graphics that are identified with your brand.

Each newsletter that you send is another opportunity to build your brand, which in turn increases the conversion rate as your clients build their relationship with you.

Craft Your “From” And Subject Line

It’s important to focus on conversion right from the get-go. After all, if people don’t even open your email, what are the chances that all your super-spiffy conversion tricks inside will actually have an effect?

The chances are very low indeed, let’s just put it that way.

So it’s important to “pitch” your emails in a winning formula from the very beginning. There are two ways to do that:

  • Use a “from” that they will recognize. If they signed up to get emails from your company website, then make sure the company name is involved. Patreon is a good example of this, in that they send out emails that use both the personal name of who the email is from, and then append “from Patreon” (ie. “Taryn from Patreon”) to include that recognizability.

  • Make the subject line something that catches attention in a personal way, rather than just an “Open now for the chance of a lifetime!” generic catch-all that could be from anywhere. A good example is the email setup from the Institute of Children’s Literature, which capitalizes on the already-known interest of its email list and hits individual points that will capture interest (ie. “Pitches that sell for the third grade market”).

A tip that may be more unexpected — but still actionable — is to include an emoji in the subject line. However you may feel about emojis on a personal level, the statistics show that they contribute to a higher open rate than those which don’t include an emoji.

Perhaps “emoji” is the new language of marketing.

Be As Non-Generic As Possible

Ignore the fact that this is a fairly “generic sounding” tip, because there’s a reason for it. What’s generic for one type of newsletter is ground-breaking for another; “generic” is very subjective to the type of email you’re sending out, the market and audience you’re writing for, and the subject matter in general.

Email newsletters are a popular marketing and reputation management option, so there are naturally a ton of them out there. And, also naturally, this means that it’s far easier to be generic than it is to be unique.

This is something that requires attention on every level, to every detail. Starting from the general layout of the email, to how it’s broken up, what is included, and even how it’s closed out.

This is where a little research comes in handy. Take a look at other email newsletters out there, especially in your niche market, analyze how they tend to look, and then don’t do that.

The last thing you want is for your email to look exactly like everyone else’s. Things that don’t stand out get sent to the spam folder.

Include Lots of Images

In terms of attention paid to content, images are the reigning kings of all types of marketing, and email newsletters are no exception.

It’s a fact that we process images far faster than text content. And it’s also a fact that the audience who is reading your email has a short attention span; statistics indicate that we tend to skim content to see if there is anything immediately relevant to us personally (don’t say you don’t do that, because we all do), and back-click out of there in less than a minute.

So top-load your emails with relevant, eye-catching images, and include textual content in the form of links to further information. It’s a great way to catch the attention and then improve the click through rate.

Use button-based CTAs

Those links can be highly effective, but even more effective is a button CTA. This has been tested and proven in email newsletter trials which show that the button CTA is 28% more likely to promote conversion.

The exact reasons for this may vary, but it likely has something to do with the fact that it’s much harder to miss a button than it is to miss a link. Bigger is better, in this case.

Converting With Email

Conversion can be a tricky business. But there are definitely ways to heighten the likelihood of turning a reader into a consumer. And capitalizing on email newsletters — which already have a built-in interest factor, since the reader has signed up for the email to begin with — makes sense from a conversion standpoint.

All it takes is attention to detail to carefully craft an email newsletter that is designed to convert.

Author Bio

Working as a marketing consultant has given Cara Michaels plenty of opportunities to experience the different types of startup journeys, challenges and pain points. That is why she loves to solve their problems through her private consultancy and create awareness through writing.