Nearly everyone’s inbox is bombarded with emails every single day. And if your subject line is lifeless, offensive or sounding a bit spammy, there’s a massive chance that your email will never get noticed and opened. So, how can you create catchy email subject lines that will make your recipients pause from skimming and completely grab their attention?
Today, we’re filtering out the spams and instead, we’ll focus on writing catchy email subject lines for sales that deliver.
This will get you all ready to navigate across the oceans of emails and come up with subject lines that understand who your recipients are, what activate their interests, and what their objectives are.
After reading this guide, you will be geared up with the following:
- The importance of email subject lines for sales
- The do’s and don’ts of writing catchy email subject lines
- Examples of the best email subject lines for sales
The Do’s: What makes good email subject lines?
In reality, the strategies for writing impactful subject lines shift from one industry to another, but by there are general guidelines that different industry leaders practice to help them on track in achieving their goals.
If you are serious about growing your sales or subscribers, below are some of the basic guidelines to keep in mind when crafting your email subject lines. If you don’t have that many subscribers yet, go to “How to grow email list fast and free in 30 days” and get grow your email list.
- Keep it short and sweet
One key characteristic of catchy email subject lines for sales is how quickly it conveys a message by using just a few words. Your email subject line should be short enough but also long enough to descriptively summarize what the nature of your email is all about.
As a general guideline, studies show that email subject lines containing 6 to 10 words deliver the highest open rate. Here’s a comparison of email subject lines in relation to their open rates:
- Write like a human being
People respond to people. Your subject line should read like it’s written by a human being, not sounding like a whole marketing team or a salesperson. The more natural and more personal your subject line is, the better.
- Personalize your email subject lines
While traditionally, addressing your recipients by name in your email body is already a standard, you can also address them in your subject line. You might want to test using the first name like “Hey, Mike! …” and see the results. Plus, it has been reported that subject lines personalized with a recipient’s first name can increase open rates by more than 18%!
- Hook your audience with value
Your subject lines should stir some interest the moment your audience read them. Provide your audience with a captivating hook that stirs their curiosity and incentivizes them to know more about it by opening the email. For instance, email subject lines with the word “Free” in it were opened 10% more than those without.
Target makes sure that the email recipients are hooked by incentivizing them with a free gift.
- Build a sense of urgency and exclusivity
Your email should not sit on the recipient’s inbox for too long or else it will just be covered over completely by other emails. You want your recipients to open them as soon as they receive it. Thus, make sure to heighten the urgency by using scarcity, exclusivity, and time-related urgency triggers, such ah “Deal expires soon…”.
Overstock uses phrases like “Last Chance!” and “Gone Tonight!” to heighten the sense of urgency on its email subject line.
- Establish trust
The moment your recipients see your email, they should be able to tell whether you’re a legit brand or not. This is especially true for small business owners competing for industry leaders. And even if you are already well-known, erase any doubts and let them know that they are truly receiving an email from your brand. The content of your email should be consistent with your subject line so that you can build credibility in the long run.
The Don’ts: Things to avoid when crafting subject lines
- Formatted, newsletter type
We all know that you want sales, but you don’t have to make it look like it has been formatted just like a sales pitch. Avoid making look like a normal newsletter type. People are already bombarded by newsletters every single day. Don’t get lost in the crowd. If not, you will see an 18.7% decrease in open rates when you use the word “newsletter” in your subject lines.
We’ve talked about establishing trust and credibility in your email subject lines. Just imagine reading misspelled words in the email subject line? It doesn’t seem credible and might even be perceived as a spam or a hack. While you might think that misspellings arouse curiosity, this can actually hurt your brand image.
- Inconsistent capitalization
Having iNcoNsisTENT (see what I did there?) subject lines make everything seem unprofessional and spammy. Plus, IMAGINE IF YOU CAPITALIZE EVERY WORD (see that again?), it looks like you are mad.
Best subject lines for sales
At every stage of your prospects’ buyer’s journey, you need to personalize your subject lines to cover what they currently need. You can’t use the same catchy email subject lines for all of your recipients. Segment your customers and then target them with the right subject line.
Here are some email segmentation ideas with their corresponding subject lines to help you out:
Welcome email subject lines
Your subscribers signed up to your email list because they’re something about your brand that they’re attracted to. So, once you’ve got new subscribers, make sure to establish and nurture your relationship right away with welcome emails.
To get that relationship going, here are some catchy email subject lines for sales to welcome your new subscribers and get them to start converting:
1 – “So nice to meet you, [subscriber’s name], here’s [freebie] as a treat!”
Whatever the action made by your new subscribers, downloaded a content or added a wish list, let them know that you care and you’ve noticed their interest. This is a happy moment to make it cheery and positive. It’s your first impression, so make it count.
- Example: “So nice to meet you, Kevin, here’s a 20% discount as a treat!”
Tobi positions itself as a fun and clever brand with it “nice to meet new” welcome email campaign.
2 – “We’re official! [perks] for signing up.”
Subscribing is the start of a relationship. So, why not make it official? Using the “we’re official” phrase is a positive and clever statement.
- Example: “We’re official! Free bag for signing up.”
Rue21 uses “It’s Official!” phrase to welcome new subscribers aboard.
Cold email subject lines
If you’re sending cold sales emails, expect the not so warm welcome from your recipients. Cold emails are unexpected so they are most likely to be ignored. When sending cold emails, the email subject line should be a priority because it unlocks that “cold” barrier between you and the recipient.
Here are some catchy email subject lines to turn your cold prospects into warm leads:
3 – “Hey [recipient’s first name], [question]?”
Using a question format intensifies curiosity. Email subject lines with a question often lead to open and engagement. It is simple, fast, and straight to the point.
- Example: “Hey Mariah, have you heard of our backstory?”
4 – “[Name] suggested I reach out”
People trust people they know. This is why to craft catchy email subject lines for sales, referral marketing is as good as gold. If you’ve been referred by a prospect to someone they trust, include that in your email subject line by telling that it’s a referral.
- Example: “Daisy suggested I reach out”
5 – (#) invitation! We’re serious, we want you [at/to] [event, action]
Including the word “invitation” in your email subject lines gives a welcoming feel. It’s like a warm hug. You can also use “You’re invited” as an alternative.
- Example: “(1) invitation! We’re serious, we want you to save 50%”
Hotels.com sends cold emails with the word “invitation” to elicit action.
6 – “We both love [a common fact] …”
People gravitate towards people who share the same interests them, thus, the term “birds with the same feather flocks together’. You can use this common denominator to create your own catchy email subject lines for sales. As much as possible, be as specific as you can.
- Example: “We both love to run outside…”
7 – “If you’re struggling with [common problem], you’re not alone”
This catchy email subject line both uses the effectiveness of having something in common and using an issue to stir interest and action. It tells you that if you are experiencing the same problem, you don’t have to worry because there’s someone on your side. The bandwagon effect sways people opinions and drives them to act.
- Example: “If you’re struggling to get fit, you’re not alone”
8 – “Feeling [insert emotion]? Let me help”
Tap into your prospect’s current mood. People’s moods and emotions are related aspects of everyday life. If your prospects are a bit stressed, help them lighten up the load.
- Example: “Feeling a little blue? Let me help.”
The “How do your feet feel right now?” email subject line from Simple Sugars appeals to the recipient’s current mood.
9 – “You scored! We picked you [subscriber’s name]: open to discover!”
We’ve talked earlier about giving value and offering a hook in your email subject lines. This example above encapsulates them completely. With phrases like “you scored” and “we picked you”, there’s a feeling of surprise, excitement, and exclusivity altogether.
- Example: “You scored! We picked you Mike: open to discover!”
You need to take advantage of every prospect’s action. If they asked for an appointment or a status of their order, set up the right follow-up emails to capture them immediately.
Here is a list of follow-up email subject lines to surely get their commitments:
10 – “Talk on [day] at [time]?”
This email subject line is asking to set up an appointment. It’s a good line for a follow-up email because it is short, easy, and to the point. This specific subject line conveys more valuable details to a potential recipient drawing them to act immediately and magnetically into the email.
- Example: “Talk on Thursday at 5 pm?”
11 – “Will I see you at [event]?”
This email subject line is specifically helpful if you are setting up an event. It’s very casual in nature but still very specific, friendly, and encouraging. And if they do reply? You can already schedule it.
- Example: “Will I see you at the biggest shopping day?”
12 – “I’d love to hear your feedback on that [meeting/event/action]”
Asking feedback is one of the incredible ways to get your customers to start the conversation. If you just led a meeting or gave a product demonstration or hosted a webinar, it’s a terrific idea to immediately ask if they want to clarify some issues or you can answer any of their questions. This also helps your measure how things really went and discern what your next course of action will be.
- Example: “I’d love to hear your feedback on our last conversation”
The Khan Academy sends a follow-up email to get some feedback from previous clients.
13 – “Here’s the [agreed action] I promised you”
Always make sure that you deliver whatever you promised from the last meeting or previous communication with your prospects or customers. This ensures your credibility and allows you to establish a better relationship.
- Example: “Here’s the lookbook I promised you”
14 – “The timer’s going off on your [cart item]!
This subject line stirs the use of urgency for the recipients to act immediately. This is especially helpful to help you recover all those seemingly lost opportunities from those cart abandoners.
- Example: “The timer’s going off on your Adidas shoes”
Emails after no response
You’ve just been talking to a new prospect and you’re really excited about where the conversation is going. But then suddenly, that prospect stopped replying. Now what?
There will be instances that you won’t get any reply instantly or none at all. To push your recipients to reply, here are catchy email subject lines:
15 – “Should I stay or should I go?”
Email conversations are like going into a relationship. So, if you haven’t heard from someone in a while, pull out the same subject line above to mimic a breakup. You can cleverly incorporate a breakup letter in the email body too.
16 – “Time to say goodbye?”
Goodbyes are never too easy and when your recipients read such word in your subject it elicits the emotion of some painful memories of letting go or breakups in the past. That nostalgia can be helpful to draw them out and take action to open the email. This will also let you know if you still continue pursuing the lead or not.
The B2B Marketing sends this kind of email subject line to evoke nostalgia from the recipient’s last goodbyes.
17 – “I’ve sent you this [content], am I off base?”
Using this email subject line will help you know if you are on topic or you’ve sent the right thing or did the correct action from your previous email. It will also get you the recipients the chance to redirect you towards their topics of interest.
- Example: “I’ve sent you our travel guide, am I off base?”
18 – “Are you seeing someone else?”
This example of an email subject line is perfect for brands with humorous nature or if you are comfortable enough to be a little silly and funny with your prospects. There’s always a possibility that your customers have switched to your competitors so they haven’t been responding to you. This subject line will allow you to know what truly happened and give your prospects to exit, restart, or end the conversation altogether.
Email subject lines we couldn’t help but click
Globally, billions and billions of emails are being delivered and received each day. There’s an avalanche of email out there and this should worry you, especially if you’re conducting business where email is an inevitable communication vehicle for you to get in touch with your customers.
Writing effective email subject lines will help you combat this dilemma. The importance of subject lines in generating opens and boosting have become clearer for all businesses today. With our list of catchy email subject lines for sales, you can now craft highly converting subject lines, apply the best practices, and avoid all the blunders to surefire your email campaigns into its fullest potential.