How to Use Transactional Emails To Boost Sales For Your Business  blog post

March 27th 2021
4:22:58 pm

Product recommendation emails.

Offer Discount Codes .

Leverage Referral Marketing .

Add Navigation Bars .

Add Real-Time Tracking Features .


Transactional emails are messages that are used to facilitate or complete a transaction so they usually have high open rates. .

In fact, Campaign Monitor found that transactional emails have 8x more opens and clicks compared to other promotional emails, and they can generate 6x more revenue. Another study found that 98% of consumers browse through their transactional emails on a daily basis. .

For starters, transactional emails get more opens because they pertain to order confirmation, invoices, and other relevant transactions. In comparison, not everyone opens promotional emails on Gmail, and they’re usually filtered out of a recipient’s primary inbox. As a result, transactional emails give businesses a better chance to stay on top of a shoppers’ mind. They can help businesses increase sales, customer loyalty, and engagement. .


That said, what are the different types of transactional emails? How can your business leverage transactional emails? Here’s what you need to know. .

You may think that “transactional” emails are purely for financial transactions. However, this is a common misconception because it covers a much broader scope. .

Let’s look at this list of the different types of transactional emails:.

This may also include thank you emails, product recommendations and follow-up emails too. .

Imagine that you just bought a product from an eCommerce store. Shortly after, we bet you’re eagerly waiting for an order confirmation email to check the shipping details and to validate the purchase. You may also want to double check to see if the discount code was applied or to confirm that you snagged a freebie upon checkout. .

Before the product arrives, you may opt to check shipment out for delivery email. If you bought a skincare product, you would eagerly check emails or notifications to determine when your product will arrive. Otherwise, you’ll be waiting impatiently. .


These scenarios show why transactional emails have very high open rates. People want to confirm the success of their transactions, check an invoice or review the product. .

Branding helps your business stand out from competitors through the use of logo, brand voice, and color palettes.

For instance, you can easily spot a Louis Vuitton bag thanks to its logo and premium style. Alternatively, you may relate to a brand more if it communicates using a casual language, while others may prefer brands that use premium and formal language. However, branding doesn’t just encompass logo and brand voice. .

Instead, every marketing email must also follow your brand’s guidelines and feature eye-catching layouts. Avoid sending emails with just plain text. Instead, leverage your team’s graphic design skills to make it easy for customers to scan for the necessary information. .

For example, Glossier’s welcome email uses the brand’s logo and its standard light pink layout. This enables recipients to start their consumer experience and check out best selling products on the website. .

Transactional emails have a lot of perks, but how do you use it to boost sales? How will you increase the likelihood of customers returning to your eCommerce site? Here are some tips to help you get started. .

When viewing your social media feeds, you’re more likely to click content that’s aligned with your interests. The same principle applies to product recommendations. We tend to click on recommendations similar to past purchases or items on our wishlist. .

In fact, a study found that up to 31% of a website’s revenue was based on personalized product recommendations. In addition, the conversion rate of visitors who clicked on recommendations was around 5.5x higher. .

These statistics show that integrating product recommendations in emails may lead to more conversions and repeat purchases for some shoppers. .

To take advantage of product recommendations, the Dollar Shave Club’s shipping confirmation email features related items that customers can buy along with their razors, such as wipes and post shave cream. .




How do you feel when you receive a discount code? There is a good chance that you are excited to scour some deals. .

 Researchers found that shoppers who received a $10 voucher were 11% happier with a 38% rise in oxytocin levels. In addition, their stress levels decreased and they felt more at ease. .

Naturally, people want to snag products at a lower prince. Convince and Convert also reported that around 93% of shoppers use discount codes every year. Hence, adding a discount code in your transactional emails may encourage customers to return to your shop. .

This is an example of  the Creative Market utilizing related product recommendations to invite customers back. .

We love to receive referrals from friends and family. .

When looking for restaurants and hotels, we ask for recommendations from our network. Instead of ads, we trust reviews from people we know and are more likely to accept referrals from them. .

It is no coincidence that word of mouth accounts for 20-50% of purchasing decisions.

While referrals happen naturally, you can accelerate customer recommendation through a referral program. .

Set up a reward for your brand advocates such as a discount or free product for a successful referral. Then, help spread the word about your referral program in your transactional emails. .

Equal Parts – an eCommerce store for cookware – encourages customers to invite their friends in exchange for rewards. .

Most email marketing guides emphasize the importance of having a compelling CTA button. But don’t overlook navigation bars. .

A navigation bar provides additional access to relevant pages on your website such as main product categories or the home page. If customers are not interested in clicking the email body, at least they have other options to return to the website. .

For example, Shop Style’s email has a navigation bar with links to the homepage, as well as the women, men and kids’ sections. It’s very minimalist but easy for mobile users to click on.

Customers want transparency when it comes to the shipping process. According to Shipbob, 97% of shoppers want to have the ability to monitor their orders in every step of the shipping process. .

Unfortunately, not every store can provide same-day delivery like Amazon. A good alternative is to provide order tracking so consumers can get up-to-date information about their upcoming delivery. .

Having real-time order tracking in shipping confirmation emails can also reduce “Where Is My Order?” calls, which account for 70 to 80% of customer inquiries during the holiday season. This can greatly reduce your customer service workload. .

For example, Etsy gives shoppers the option to track their orders in real-time. It’s particularly helpful for international deliveries which can take days or weeks. .

Customizing your transactional emails can drastically boost your sales. .

Transactional emails with product recommendations can entice customers to make their next purchase. Meanwhile, offering discount codes and having a navigation bar can get shoppers back to your website. .

If you want more customers, incentivize brand advocates to promote your brand through a referral marketing program. Don’t forget to add real-time order tracking options to reduce WISMO calls. .

Now, how can you build the ideal transactional email? While we may be biased, we strongly recommend using Spently⁠—a specialized eCommerce email template builder. .

There’s no need to learn coding or Photoshop thanks to Spently’s intuitive drag-and-drop builder. .

More importantly, the starter plan is free which lets you add unique discount codes, product recommendations and referral links to your transactional emails. .

How do you use transactional emails to boost sales for your business? Let us know in the comments. .

Sally Niu, Growth Marketer (Marketing Manger @ Spently)From first touch, conversion, to retention, Sally prides herself on orchestrating a coherent and personalized customer journey. Prior to joining Spently as its Marketing Manager, Sally was responsible for demand generation at, another beloved eCommerce loyalty platform. Obsessed with data and user experience, she is determined to drive sustainable business growth with a systematic and experimental approach.