The purpose of Onboarding emails is to help new consumers learn how to use a brand’s products or services, such that they can derive maximum value for the same.

When a consumer is educated over the prime benefits a product or a service can offer for him, it helps create a simpler passage towards mastering a product’s functionality. This is a preferred way for onboarding new customers, such that drives a long term engagement.

Welcome onboarding emails

When we consider a customer onboarding journey, welcome emails make the most important emails in the list. A welcome email is the best way to break the ice, and a customer can move on to the next step. A customer should preferably have some sort of an idea regarding what he can expect. This keeps his first interaction with your product or service positive.


The welcome email churned out by Habitat is high on graphics. They keep new customers engaged with friendly GIFs, a splash of colour and catchy designs. Welcome emails by Habitat have a clear primary CTA. Incentive drives are placed to help customers with decision making regarding the purchase. Micro CTAs similarly are devised in a way to inspire new customers to explore more about the product. The emails also allow customers to engage with brands over social media.


Ello’s welcome emails are totally in sync with the remainder of their branding. They primarily use a minimal copy with abundant white spaces and a unique typeface. This speaks tons regarding their branding, which is consistent and strong. The CTA is pretty much focused. It is clear and simple.

James Clear

Setting expectations in customers’ minds is invariably a great idea. When people like to hear from you twice in a day, emailing them twice a week may disappoint them. Similarly, when you are going to email them weekly, multiple messages a week might annoy them.

With its welcome email, James Clear sets expectations.


With their welcome email, Squarespace attempts to get new customers, who will sign into their account or upgrade. The method for contacting their support team is clear and simple. If their customers need any help with their processes, they can comfortably reach out.


There are cases wherein a product needs to be downloaded or installed to be successful. The product will derive maximum value if it is installed early in the journey of receiving emails. In case the trial period goes by without the customer making a download, it is nearly impossible for them to convert to paying customers.

Sqwiggle is characterized by its simplicity. They encourage users to start using the app right away.

Personal onboarding emails

For initiating a conversation with the customers, personal onboarding emails are among the preferred ways. By finding out the purpose that customers wishes to accomplish by using your product, it becomes easier to highlight the right ways towards the same. It is this valuable feedback that comes in to be detrimental towards enhancing your automated onboarding campaign.
Similarly, it is of paramount importance to keep a close eye over the timing of emails. Just as an example, if you send an automated email 30 seconds after the customer signing up at 3 am, it won’t deliver a personalized appearance. Vero has a time zone scheduling in place. The emails are hence delivered at an optimum time for each of the customers.


In merely nine short sentences, a customer is introduced to the services of AnyPerk by the founder, Taro Fukuyama. The customer discovers the right point to make a jumpstart from, and figures out the avenues for assistance. While it is expressed clearly and briefly, it is very effective.


BugHerd is now known as MacroPod. The welcome email delivered by the founder Alan Downie is simple and personal. The end-customer correspondingly gets a fair idea of what he can expect when he uses the product. Even while the idea initially appears counterintuitive, it is among the finest of ways to sell your brand to the new customers. The emails interact with human entities, and the end customer feels so.


With his welcome email, Paul May, the founder, sets expectations for the end customer and offers the services of the customer support team as well. The software is deeply associated with creating relationships, and the welcome email is oriented towards the purpose.

Getting Started onboarding emails

The Getting Started email may be sent as an alternative to a welcome email. It may be sent in addition to the same as well. If the end customer takes action quicker, he is better placed to derive maximum value from the product. Especially in the event when a vendor makes a free trial available, inducing quick action from the customers is of the utmost importance.
It is important to recognize that a long email may overwhelm readers. Instead, one should use the getting started email which induces new people to take the first step.


iDoneThis is a very functional email. Users of iDoneThis receive a daily email that looks exactly like the one above. When a customer responds with the tasks that he accomplished through the day, this adds in the dones to his calendar. With the getting started email, the receiver of the email comes to recognize how this is accomplished. Then he can try out the procedure right away.


Team Majestic recognizes that when end customers are thorough with the usage of their suite of tools, they are more likely to be around. Correspondingly team Majestic initiate one-on-one sessions - and the users get a detailed overview, of the tools. Thereafter, Majestic’s selling pitch is centred upon the idea that users, just like themselves have enjoyed the tool outright.
Even while the message has an indisputable personalized feel, it has a strong marketing value as well.


In case you have an important idea to express, use a button for the same. For a more important message, the button should be bolder. With the bold buttons that Raven uses, the brand is assured that the viewers are more likely to become paying customers.


Zapier is an example of a true blue behavioural email. Zapier observes that following signing up for a free trial, the user hasn’t conducted much activity. This correspondingly triggers a highly targeted email. Upon receiving the email, a user has much-enhanced know-how regarding using Zapier. This email correspondingly comes by as a fine catalyst for onboarding.

Free Trial Ending Emails

Free trial ending emails stand for the last chance to convert for the customers. They imply time for action. In the example illustrated below, we come across some fine tactics for re-engaging the users, for one last time.


Beatrix uses a frequently availed of scare tactic. They communicate to the people that their data will be deleted. Brands have a responsibility that this does not sound like an ultimatum to the users. But the message should be promoted with a requisite bit of clarity.

The technique Beatrix uses for the same is informing the users that their work won’t be saved. Then they explain for the final time, the factors that make their app valuable.


One of the key underlying causes that allow free trials to lapse is that the viewers are unsure regarding how and why should they use an app. Tony, who is from ClickInsights informs you that your data will be deleted. Thereafter, he expresses his availability for assistance.


The approach used by Mention is unique. They allow users to continue over a free plan. Henceforth, the onboarding email comes by as an opportunity for them to know more of the benefits promoted by the paid plan. Emails by Mention are all nicely designed. They feature buttons that are clear and bold, and the CTAs are nicely highlighted.

Activation Emails

Activation emails are overall transactional, but they are formatted promotionally. The emails are oriented towards the sweet spot in email marketing. Onboarding emails actually help get things done.


In activation emails by Gazelle, they induce the reader to click on the CTA to activate their account. Then they entice him to check out the brand over Twitter and Facebook as well, by providing links.

This is active marketing and passive marketing combined in a single statement and comes by as a fine way to keep the users engaged over multiple channels. By making a brand memorable for the end customer, it stays at the top of their minds when they require your services.


Moz does a great job at branding. With their videos, conferencing, community, and the blog, Moz is reasonably close to being a household brand. The activation email that they send out for users stays consistent with the remainder of the user experience. It sets expectations and presents their software as fun, from the copy through to the design.


Right at their core, activation emails are intended towards inducing users into taking action. But it depends on the product or the service being offered as well. The UserVoice approach makes one of the finest fits in this regard. They send out minimalistic, plain text emails.

Nudge Emails

Nudge Emails may start with the reminder that the viewer has already seen numerous blog posts that initiate with ‘Why should you’.

The format works nicely for onboarding emails as well – while the marketer stays focused. In case you are focused upon customer engagement through a conversation, the content should be so focused that the viewer discovers at least three great reasons why he should convert.


Activation emails by Shopify exemplify the factors that make popups priceless for the end customer. The brand accomplishes two goals in the process. They highlight a new revenue stream for their clients, and also bring people to the Shopify app store.


Conferences by the Search Engine Land are a substantial investment. Long-form emails, such as the one shown work nicely from the SEO point of view, and marketing point of view as well. By meeting two purposes with a single initiative, the bills paid by organizations reduce.

Trunk Club

The mobile app by Trunk Club brings ease to customers’ life. The activation email that they send out is short and sweet. This enables a viewer to recognize that their app is convenient to use. Thereafter, they close with a CTA high on visibility.

Complete Your Profile onboarding emails

Data-driven email marketing calls for data to accomplish. When you need the end-customer to fill out his profile, it empowers you to orient the remainder of marketing around that data.

The emails mentioned here are some fine ways to accomplish the task quicker.

Google Places

The onboarding email mentioned over here is reasonably old, but it does get the point across. While the user profile isn’t all that good, Google Places doesn’t work wonders as well. But once Google Places obtains the requisite profile related data, the real marketing can initiate.


Brands frequently tend to overlook one of the very basic tenets of email marketing – they fail to inform the end-customers what they should do next. Let’s see how LearnVest achieves the same.

  • They discuss the viewer’s Itinerary
  • “How to navigate LearnVest”
  • “We will take it from here”
  • “Your Financial Next Step: Complete Your Profile”

The setup naturally results in reducing anxiety for a user. Making their way through the processes is simplified.


Twitter has numerous challenges in terms of onboarding. They require new users to complete their profiles, follow other users, and write some tweets of their own as well.

To show the people what they need to do, twitter follows the common 1-2-3 method. Matching steps with an empty profile shows users where to go next.

Upsell Emails

Upsell is a word frequently associated with negative connotations. But in actual practice, that is not the case because upselling adds value for customers.

By framing emails correctly, the upsell part can be presented in a manner that does not annoy customers. On the contrary, the end customer may develop gratitude to an extent for getting their attention over something that might’ve missed their attention.

Dollar Shave Club

The upsell email that we see from Dollar Shave Club has been smartly disguised as a transactional message. This expresses in detail the contents of the following consignment and merely asks you to confirm your shipping address. Following that, it presents before you several products that can enhance your shaving experience.

This is one smart way to broach the subject. I personally vouch for the Dollar Shave Club products.


Five factors make the mentioned onboarding email great:

  1. The clarity of the context
  2. The benefits are explained before presenting the CTA.
  3. Numerous strong verbs in the copy.
  4. The focus lies over benefits and not the features.
  5. CTAs that cannot be missed.


What are the factors that define great marketing from poor marketing?


It is this differentiating factor that makes this onboarding email by Priceline exceedingly good. Priceline is already aware that I have booked a hotel. They will put their focus over the remainder of things that I require – A rental car or another night stay at the hotel.

Being offered the extras doesn’t surprise me. In case I require aid, it is right before me.