improve-designDesign is one of the most important elements of a marketing email. Usually, it’s one of the first thing that your subscribers notice. They will, generally, spend a few seconds assessing the quality of your design before they read anything that you’ve written. A poor design can also have a significant effect on your click through rate; a subscriber may want to click on your email, but your design may confuse them as to where they should click. Thankfully, there are a number of simple things you can do to improve the design of your emails, thereby improving your open and click though rates as well:

Include a Call to Action Button

This is one of the simplest things you can do to improve your email’s design. A call to action button will clearly show your readers what they need to click on in order to know more about what you’ve touched on in your email.

Your call to action button should stand out from the rest of your email, yet still be cohesive with your overall design. In this example, Bella Italia have used a bright red colour to make their call to action buttons stand out:

Bella CTA

Your call to action button is also one of the easiest things for you to split test. In different emails, you can experiment with different colours, fonts, and placement, and see which ones achieve the best results.

Have a Consistent Header

Generally, people spend just a few seconds deciding whether or not they are going to read an email. Therefore, you should make your emails instantly recognisable. That way, the people who are interested in your company will know, within a couple of seconds, that this is an email that they want to read.

The simplest way to make your emails recognisable is to use a consistent header. Keep this the same (or similar) in every email that you send, no matter what the body of the email contains. The design of the header can also be based on the one on your website so you have complete brand consistency.

As you can see, Blue Inc keep their header design consistent on all their emails and on their website:


Blue Inc Email 1

Blue Inc Email 2


Blue Inc website

Have a Useful Footer

Although including a footer in your emails won’t help your subscribers immediately decide if they want to read it, it will add a considerable amount of value to your mailings. There are certain pieces of information that people expect to find in marketing emails these days, such as social media links and an unsubscribe button, and the footer has become the default place to put these things. However, you can put much more in your footer. It can be used for any piece of information that you deem to be important, but not important enough to get top billing; something that may discourage a reader who was thinking of unsubscribing.

The marketing emails from L’Occitane have particularly good footers, including some of the benefits that the company offers, as well as the standard unsubscribe and social media links:

L'Occitane Footer

Design can play a vital role in the success of your email marketing campaign. If you’re struggling to get consistent results from your marketing emails, try making a few tweaks to your design to see what your subscribers best respond to.