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Subhankar Kundu in Transactional Emails

Best Practices To Handle Welcome Email

Your customers expect a welcome email after they sign-up and it is a decent act to send your customers a welcome email. Sometimes when you send a welcome email, a side gap can exist in the email’s quality. If you send a good welcome email, your customers can get started, and they may archive it too.

When you design these emails, there are few goals that you need to achieve and some mistakes you should avoid. This way, you can ensure that your welcome email offers the information the recipient needs. It also serves as a guide for their next steps.

Onboarding Vs. Welcome Emails

While Onboarding emails are more popular, they are not entirely similar to welcome emails. Onboarding emails help the new user to understand the workflows, the available features and how to unlock them. It offers more than what a welcome email offers. A welcome email is just a signpost that contains only the vital information about your account.

Another important difference is that welcome email is sent immediately after the customer signs up while onboarding emails are sent over a period.

Goals of A Welcome Email

You may wonder that any customer who signs up knows that they have signed up for your website. But still, why do they require a welcome email? In general, you should ensure that they get the best experience from your product. The finest way to start this is by sending the welcome email that can start their interactions in the best way possible. Check out some best things an email can cover.

Decide a tone for the new relationship

If a person signs up and uses the services that your company offers, it means that they trust you. When you send a personalized welcome email, you tend to enhance their trust. However, simply adding mere tags to the email will not actually personalize it. Ensure that you include something that matters to your client about their account. If they have a personalized URL, send a copy of the URL in the welcome email.

Michaels has done a wonderful job in ensuring that their welcome email is friendly and effective too.  In addition to expressing gratitude, it ensures the email gets you started. It has information about getting started, and also gives a special offer to entice you.


Confirm email address of the new customer

The confirmation of an email address can be a passive action like gathering information about bounces using a bounce webhook. It can also be as active as requiring the customer to confirm their email address by following a link included in the email. When you choose a passive check with webhook, you can get the customer to give an update on their email address while they are in the app. You can do this with a notification bar should the first attempt to reach out to them fails.

Email confirmation was set up as a different workflow. When you need to confirm an email, you need to add a confirmation step to the welcome email.

Help your customers to get speedy solutions to their problems

You would want to offer new customers all the information they need as they get started. Even so, laying out all the information is overwhelming. Therefore, instead of including various links, you need to think through thoroughly about the next action the new user should take.

The confirmation of a customer’s email address should be the only action in this email. When they get to the site to confirm their email, include the next steps that are required for them to take on the confirmation page.

It does not matter where the clients go from the welcome email. All that counts is the next step should be a page that is full of resources. It should enable them to add their team or make them perform a vital action. If you use your app to direct the customer on what to do next, then you can push them to take action using the welcome email.

Common Mistakes Made With Welcome Emails

While all the traits that make the best welcome email may vary, there are some common mistakes that you should avoid while designing your welcome emails.

Including Passwords In The Email

Some companies keep un-hashed passwords, and they send them in emails. Also, they will generate a new password at your request and email the password to you. You are not supposed to store passwords without being hashed, let alone sending them via emails.

When you ask a person to reset their password after their first login, never ever send the password in the email. What you can do is to send them a link that is temporary that they can use to reset their password. While the implementation of this process is beyond this guide’s scope, you can get more information in Troy Hunt’s guide concerning the recommended implementation titled, secure password reset feature. There are so many security risks and problems you face while sending passwords in emails. Even your customers who are cautious about security will start doubting whether they should trust you with their payment information.

Spreading The Focus Too Thin

One signs up for your services because they have to complete some work. No one has time to decipher what they need to do next. Therefore, make all the steps crystal clear. Use your website and onboarding emails to give your users the chunk of information that is easy to digest.

Sending Multiple Welcome Emails

None of us wants to receive multiple emails regarding the same matter, right? One is enough. The same applies to welcome emails too. Whenever possible, merge the emails. Earlier I had talked about confirming the email address. Do not send a different workflow for confirming emails when you can include it in the welcome email.

Making All Information Revolve Around The Product

Always fight the temptation to make the welcome email about you and the product in an attempt to make them realize they have made the best decision. The user will build an image of about your product by the emails you send.

Asking your new customer about their thoughts about the product in welcome email is a wrong move. It’s like you are going on your first date, and your date asks you what you would like to name the two of your future kids. I mean come on! Even the appetizer is not served yet!

Let your welcome email be solely about helping the customers address the problems.

The Information You Should Include In The Welcome Emails

It is obvious that a great welcome email will help the new customer to get started with your product and a bad one will make them abandon it. You must put in efforts to send exceptional welcome emails. I have mentioned some basics below. Here are some things that the welcome email should be doing.

State The Name Of The Product Clearly

A lot of times, people use different product name and company name. You may have witnessed this at some point in time. For example, you may have created an account to give a certain product a try. But the subsequent emails makes it hard for you to recognize it. They come from the parent company or the CEO of the company. Your customers will fail to notice such emails.

When you send such emails, ensure that you establish a clear connection to your product for your recipient to identify. You can add the name of the CEO in the welcome email, ensure that you include the product name. For instance, “Anna with ProductName”

Another way to go about with such emails is to ensure the person name you have used in sending the emails is the one receiving the replies. If this is not possible, send the email from your product and not an individual. Your customers will start wondering if they are actually communicating with the CEO or are they getting replies from the support team. Never lie to your clients that the CEO is on the other end when they are not there. Give the customer relevant and useful support address for their replies and leave it at that.

Create A Welcome Message That Is Friendly

As you start the email, include a simple thank you note to thank them for signing up for your product. Also, include information that shows your customers how their product will simplify their work and help them do it better.

In some situations, you can use this opportunity to include information about your company and its background. Always use welcome emails to show the clients how the company will help them and stay focused. Do not use them to tout the company or the product.

Also, before you ask them to add you to their address book, consider how they are using the product. Because if a person is trying the product out, then you cannot say that they will keep receiving emails from you.

Details About Their Account

Ensure your email has all the account information of the user. It should include their username, their login URL, the plan they have subscribed to, their plan renewal, and the expiration date. While this information will also be available in your app, it saves them a lot of hassle when it is in their inbox and can access it without having to search through the product.

Always Provide A Clear Next Step

You may want to give your new customer everything they need to get started in a single moment. However, remember that the journey begins with a single step. You can include a confirmation link in the email or a link to take them to the app where they can perform their next step. Before you send your client anywhere to do anything, ensure that you have thought it through and you are convinced that the next step will bring them closer to solving their issues.

If there are more steps to use the product effectively, then put up all the steps on the website or send them a separate email for onboarding. If you present it in the welcome email, it may distract the customer. Worst, the client may require to keep going back and forth between the email and the application.

If you are using a SaaS app, send a video that has few tips to help your client. If there is a mobile phone app or desktop app, encourage the client to download it. For those running e-commerce, it is a good idea to include promotions such as free shipping or coupons.

Let them know where they can get help

A customer would refer to their welcome email when they need answers to questions concerning their account. It can be about who to contact for support or who to contact when they have billing queries.

Some of the things you can link in emails include:

  • The accurate contact information like phone numbers, addresses, social media handles, and physical address.
  • Help documents, specific guides, and FAQs
  • Tools to manage their subscriptions
  • Click to chat

The Checklist

Our checklist will help you remember all the individual points to get you started on designing and building your welcome email template.

  • Writing the product name in the “from” address
  • An email address for support for the “Reply-to” address
  • Create a welcome message that is friendly.
  • Details about their account (excluding the password)
  • Always provide a clear next step they should follow.
  • Let them know where they can get more information.

1 Comment

Sanjay Singh

Awesome blog post. Welcome emails need to be more than just a “thank you.” They have to be actionable – otherwise, why would users bother opening one?

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