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12 Types of Emails to Drive Purchases and Increase Loyalty

Larry VanDenHandel on October 29, 2019

Out of all marketing techniques, email has the best ROI. In fact, email marketing has an incredible 4,000% ROI — for every dollar you spend, you get $40 in return.

4000 percent return on investment on email marketing
Source: Emailmarketingold

The problem is, not everyone knows about email marketing, let alone the different types of email and how to use them. That’s why in this article, we’ll show you the various types of email to help you drive purchases, increase ROI, and even inspire brand loyalty.

1. Welcome Emails

A welcome email provides a new subscriber or customer a sort of impression or feeling about a company or brand using email. It sets the tone or atmosphere on what the subscriber can expect from the company.

A welcome email can contain almost anything — from a promotional video to a special offering. Or it could simply contain a hello message and let your new subscriber know how much you appreciate him or her.

For example, after you sign up for an account on Smartsheet, you’ll receive their welcome email along with some tips on how to get started:

welcome email from smartsheet
Source: Smartsheet Welcome Email

In a survey made by Jill LeMaire of Epsilon, it showed that welcome emails have an average open rate of 50% to 60%. Unfortunately, not everyone sends out a welcome email to their new email subscribers as only a little over half of the respondents sends one.

Sending a welcome email is a good way to warm your new subscribers and start building a relationship of trust.

2. Newsletter Emails

Newsletter emails are sent to subscribers on a regular basis. It could be weekly, monthly, bi-monthly, or even yearly. It’s a multi-purpose email that usually informs subscribers about new products, events, offers, discounts, or news about the brand.

It’s a good way to establish authority and increase loyalty. Content Marketing Institute does this weekly delivering some of the best content of the week:

content marketing institute weekly newsletter
Source: Content Marketing Institute Newsletter

It’s not hard to see how a newsletter email can help drive purchases and increase sales. It’s like you’re sending a power page or a gateway that will link the subscribers to various content pieces and sales pages.

3. Educational Emails

Education-based emails are used to teach subscribers about a certain topic. Some use pain points to strike a certain chord on subscribers. Making them is very simple and easy since you can just repurpose existing blogs.

Some people use educational emails as a means to mention or promote a product or an upcoming event. For example, Neville Medhora of KopyWriting Kourse sent an email teaching about anti-procrastination methods:

neville medhora teaching about anti-procrastination methods in an email
Source: Email from Neville Medhora of KopyWriting Kourse

In the middle of this email, there’s a recommendation about joining Neville’s Facebook Live writing session.

4. Birthday, Holiday and Seasonal Emails

These types of emails, especially the birthday email, are personal emails that would show how much you care for your subscribers. Sending these emails can be a great way to increase profits and put your brand on the top of your subscribers’ minds.

A good combination is adding discounts and offers on the email as a holiday greeting or gift. Of course, the emails should be sent before the actual event. Like if you’re selling Christmas decorations, the best time to provide discounts and offers would be in a week or two before Christmas.

Here’s a good example of a Christmas email from Bath and Body Works:

Christmas email from bath and body works
Source: Email from Bath and Body Works

One thing to remember is that you’ll have to collect the birthdates of your subscribers for you to be able to greet them. But it’s worth it since birthday emails generate twice the revenue of bulk mailings.

5. Anniversary Emails

This email could mean two things — celebrating the brand’s anniversary or the subscriber’s anniversary on joining the brand’s email list. This is another way to put your brand on the subscribers’ minds and maybe insert a promotion.

Bluehost always runs an annual birthday sale as a way to celebrate the hosting company’s “annual birthday” along with enticing offers:

bluehost email anniversary birthday
Source: Email from Bluehost

If birthday emails can generate twice the revenue than bulk mailings, anniversary emails can generate 7 times the revenue. Sending anniversary emails is a good way to increase purchases and sales.

6. Announcement Emails

Sending emails to announce a new product and event can arouse the subscribers’ interest. When done correctly, it could build hype and encourage participation leading to a large influx of sales.

At the same time, these emails could also serve as event invitations and product pre-orders. Here’s a good example sent by Sumo:

sumo event invitation email with a hook
Source: Event Invitation Email from Sumo

Sumo gained at least 2 things from this event — sales (from product recommendations during the workshop) and authority.

7. Review Request Emails

This is the type of email that brands send to buying subscribers to know what they think about the product or service they bought. Usually, emails that request a review are sent after a few weeks of the purchase date.

Sending a review request email will help you achieve 3 things:

  • Gain a testimonial
  • Insight on the strengths and weaknesses of the product/service
  • Chance to fix a problem before it spreads

After ordering an item on Lazada, you will receive an email similar to this:

lazada write a review email
Source: Email from Lazada

An email like the one shown above is an excellent way to increase a subscriber’s loyalty to your business. Fortunately, you don’t have to manually compose such an email.

intelligent review requests feature from trustspot
Source: TrustSpot Intelligent Review Requests

TrustSpot has an In-Email Review Requests which enables a customer or subscriber to leave a review directly within the email. With TrustSpot, you can send intelligent review requests where you can ask fully customize its design, ask custom questions, and even incentivize the review request with coupons.

8. Recommendation Emails

It’s not hard to understand how recommendation emails help generate more sales. After all, this is a custom email sent to subscribers based on the subscriber’s purchase history with the intent to make a sale. An email like this is what you use to cross-sell and up-sell easily.

A good example of a recommendation email is from Amazon Kindle:

amazon kindle recommendation books email
Source: Email from Amazon Kindle

Amazon Kindle sends book recommendations inspired by customers’ wishlists. You can expect that the algorithm for this includes e-books that were browsed and bought.

featured product upsells by trustspot
Source: TrustSpot Featured Product Upsells

If you’re on TrustSpot, you can also show product upsells to your customers on each TrustSpot email. It’s like hitting two birds with one stone — you’re asking them how they feel about the product they bought, as well as showing them other products they might be interested in buying.

9. Promotional Emails

Promotional emails are emails that offer “exclusive” discounts, special deals, or coupons to the subscribers. They give off the vibe of scarcity, making it sound more appealing to the subscribers as the offers aren’t always present and might end soon.

Here’s an example from Blinkist which informs the subscribers about the last chance to get 40% off for Blinkist Premium:

blinkist 40% premium
Source: Email from Blinkist

As you can see, they have included a sort of deadline which makes their offer look scarce and rare. Promotional emails help rake in lots of sales especially from raving fans waiting for a discount.

10. Confirmation Emails

Confirmation emails like order confirmation and package check-in emails update the customer about the status of their order. This type of email puts the customer’s mind at ease and helps build trust and loyalty between the brand and its subscribers.

Fortunately, e-commerce platforms like Shopify already have this covered. Here’s an example of a generic confirmation email:

chewy generic order confirmation email
Source: Email from Chewy

Aside from building trust, nothing actually stops you from customizing the emails and inserting a few promotions for related products or items you can upsell or cross-sell. And you should! According to Conversio’s data, email confirmation and email receipts have a 70% open rate. Not using your confirmation emails to drive additional sales is a waste.

Abandoned cart emails are sent to customers who added an item to their shopping cart but didn’t push through with the purchase and left the website. Using this kind of email could potentially save 63% of your lost sales.

Luckily, they’re not hard to set up using e-commerce platforms like Shopify. They’re usually under the trigger-based emails that you can activate and customize.

Here’s a witty abandoned cart email from Glossier:

glossier abandoned shopping cart abandonment email
Source: Email from Glossier

Techniques that e-commerce brands use with abandoned cart emails include one-time offers like discounts or free-shipping to encourage the customer to push through with the purchase.

12. Reorder Discount Emails

Using reorder emails is also a good idea, especially for businesses with products that are regularly used and reordered (like medicine, vitamins, essentials, etc.). Reorder emails are also called replenishment emails which remind customers about making a repeat purchase when the product bought is about to run out.

Here’s an example from Prevagen:

prevagen reorder replenishment email
Source: Email from Prevagen

As you can see, you can inject promotions in the reorder emails. Since customers already bought from you, chances are high that they’ll buy again especially when offered discounts.


There are many different types of emails you can use to drive purchases and increase customer loyalty. The key here is knowing the right email to use at the right time, and how to use each one efficiently.

Larry VanDenHandel
Larry VanDenHandel

Larry is the co-founder & CTO of TrustSpot. When he's not developing a new feature or managing our engineering team, you can find Larry at Disney with his wife and daughter.

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