In the competitive world of e-commerce, transactional emails play a crucial role in conducting a successful business. You may not necessarily find them the most important part of your email strategy, but they have the potential to make or break the future of your company.

Put simply, transactional emails are automated, real-time emails sent to the users once a specific action takes place on a website, app, or platform (also known as triggers).

In this post, we’re going to talk about the nine most commonly used transactional email templates.

Before delving deeper, let’s have a look at the key characteristics that make a successful transactional email.

  • Communicating a clear message with an option to manage preferences.
  • A clearly visible Call to Action (CTA) in case the reader wants to explore the transaction further.
  • Simplicity, by using just enough words to convey the message.

It’s quite normal to get confused between transactional emails and marketing emails. The key difference between these two is that transactional emails are meant to inform readers about non-promotional topics, whether that is a confirmation of an order or the payment of an invoice.

Another difference is that you don’t generally need a recipient’s permission to send transactional emails. But when it comes to sending marketing or promotional emails, it’s mandatory to seek permission.

So, now that you’ve obtained a clear idea of what transactional emails are and how they are used, let’s check out the nine most effective transactional email templates that can help you conduct better business.

Double opt-in email

Double opt-in emails are designed to add one additional step to the subscription process a reader goes through.

These emails typically require the reader to verify their email address, showing “above average” interest in order to become part of a mailing list.

Ideally, you should consider a double opt-in email as a sort of filter to help you maintain only the readers that show true interest in your content.

Here’s an example of a double opt-in email.

And here is a simple, yet effective template that you can use to make sure your new readers complete the subscription process.

Hey [name],

Thanks for signing up at [add company name]

To complete your registration, please confirm your email by clicking the following button:

[Add CTA]

Note: if you do NOT confirm your email by clicking the above button, you will NOT receive our emails. In order to ensure all of our emails end up in your inbox, you can whitelist our email address by adding it to your contact list.

Best regards,
[company name] team

Password reset email

Everyone will, at some point, forget their password – let’s face it. Password reset emails ensure that your (potential) customers regain access to your products and/or services.

Through this email, a user should be able to update their password and subsequently log back into their account.

Having a template for this type of transactional email is crucial for businesses that work with password-protected accounts. An important thing to note is that such emails should also inform the recipients about the timeframe after within which the password link will expire.

To give you a better idea here’s an example of a password reset email from Udemy.

If you are looking to structure your own Password Reset email, you can use the template provided below:

Hey [name]

The support team received your request to reset your password. Click the button below to get started.

[CTA]

If it doesn’t work, you can copy and paste the following link in your browser:

[Add URL]

Regards,
[company name] team

Order confirmation email

Order confirmation emails are hands down the most valuable and important transactional emails for any business. They do not only come with the highest open rate but people also read through them more carefully.

And this makes perfect sense because an order confirmation email provides the reader with the reassurance that their order has been placed successfully. Such emails also help customers to double-check whether they ordered the correct product and if the delivery address is correct.

Additionally, for e-commerce businesses, these emails are a great opportunity to start cross-promoting products. 

Here’s how a great order confirmation email should look like.

If you run your own e-commerce business or offer a service online, you can use this order confirmation email template and adjust it according to your needs.

Hello [Customer name],

Thank you for placing an order on [Company name]. We’re glad to inform you that we’ve received your order and will process it very soon.

Here are some other [product name] you might find interesting

-[Add product 1]
-[Add product 2]
-[Add product 3]

Thank you again for choosing [company name] for your purchase.

Best regards,
Team [company name]

Shipping notification email

Once you’ve made a sale, your job is just half-done. The next part that you’ll need to nail is the delivery experience. A shipping notification email should be sent to the customer as soon as the ordered product is sent.

Here, it’s important to remember that, what makes an ideal shipping notification email complete is three major parts:

  • The announcement that the product has successfully shipped
  • The details of the order
  • If not sent with the order confirmation email, add tracking details

While the first part of such transactional email templates caters to the sole purpose of the email, the other parts help customers stay informed and updated about their purchase. Once you’ve covered the basics, you can always get creative and try additional methods like offering discounts, vouchers, etc. to drive more sales.

Check out this example of an effective shipping notification email from Chewy.

With this easily customizable shipping notification email template, you’ll be able to make sure that your customers get the right information about the shipping of their purchases.

Hello [name],

Great news! Your order is on its way.

This email is to notify you that your order [order number] has successfully shipped. You can click on the button below to track your shipment.

[CTA]

Here are the details of your order:

[order details]

Best regards,
Team [company name]

Delivery confirmation email

This type of email informs customers that their shipment has reached its destination. This is especially useful if a buyer wants a product to be shipped to a third party (e.g. on birthdays or celebrations), as this type of confirmation email offers peace of mind, knowing that the product has been delivered (or is about to be delivered) to its recipient.

Here’s a good example of a delivery confirmation email from Aliexpress.

You can use this template to craft delivery confirmation emails.

Dear [name],

Your package has been delivered to [address or country] at [add time].

Thanks again for choosing us for your purchase. If you have any questions or comments on your product, use the button below to contact our support team.

[CTA]

Best regards,
Team [company name]

Invoice email

Among all sorts of transactional email templates, this is the one that you need to use most often if you are a service provider.

Depending on the way you configure the invoices and their delivery schedules, these emails can be automated and sent in a given timeframe.

When looking at the contents of such emails, they should appear with basic details of the amount to be paid, invoice number and preferably some company information.

As a CTA, you could add a button leading to the payment. If you are a smaller company, or maybe a freelancer, you can also replace the button with a link.

Here’s how an invoice email from a smaller company could look like.

Here’s a template that you can use to send these types of emails.

Hello [name],

Here is invoice [invoice number] for USD [enter amount].

The amount to be paid is due on [date].

View your bill online: [Enter URL]

[Add additional info: From your online bill you can print a PDF, export a CSV, or create a free login and view your outstanding bills.]

If you have any questions, please let us know.

Thanks,
[Company name]

Legal update email

Legal emails may not be the most exciting, but there are some you will likely have to send, especially when it comes to updates on your privacy policy and terms of service.

What makes these emails important is that, through sending them, you remain in a position to protect yourself legally.

And while legal update emails often contain pretty boring content, you can make them interesting to the recipients by incorporating some changes in the design or by adjusting the template you decide to use.

Here, things like mentioning the purpose of your email in the subject line and/or incorporating a personalized introduction, may give a different “color” to your email.

Another good idea is to summarize important information in the body of the email (we also illustrate this in the example below). Doing so will help your readers save time, allowing them to skip the long and complex terminology used to explain your legal updates.

Since the end goal of a legal email is to ensure that your subscribers are informed about the updates, it may be best to display the necessary information in as few words as possible, in the body of the email.

It’s important to remember that these types of transactional email templates shouldn’t contain any additional, irrelevant content anywhere.

Additionally, with legal emails, try to stay away from using navigation menus, and definitely avoid upselling, or anything marketing-related. Have a look at the given example.

And here is a somewhat formal legal email sample you can use for your business.

Dear [Customer name],

This email is to notify you that we’ve made some changes to our [add the legal mention you will talk about, e.g. Privacy and Terms of Use] policies. In short, the changes are reflected in the following.

· [Add point 1, e.g. Greater transparency about how we use your information.]

· [Add point 2, e.g. Additional details about our use of cookies to make sure your experience of using our website is more effective and convenient.]

If you wish to read all the changes, click here[add hyperlink].

Kind regards,
[company name]

Trial expiration email

This email belongs to the kind of transactional emails that are very useful for companies dealing with a software product or service (SaaS).

Depending on the structure and length of the trial period you are offering to potential customers, you may want to send one or more trial expiration emails, as the end date approaches. This is a great way to ensure that no problem arises due to service interruption, in case they want to continue using your product.

Why more than one email? Well, it’s simple. Factors like vacations, traveling, and weekends affect the timing of a service’s trial expiration. Hence, it’s important to provide users with an adequate amount of time before the expiration date, much like the example below.

Here’s a simple template for crafting trial expiring emails. 

Hello [name],

Thank you for using [product name]. We hope you got the most out of it in the last [amount of trial days].

This email is to inform you that your free trial is ending tomorrow.

If you gained value from [product], consider upgrading your account to receive its full functionalities. To do so, follow these steps:

[outline the steps to become a paid customer]

If you’ve any feedback or questions, you can reply to us in this email.

Best regards,
Team [company name]

Order cancellation email

At the unfortunate happening of order cancelations, a professional email reassures the customer that no further action is needed on their part.

Aside from the formalities of such a transactional email, this helps the customer let go of any stressors related to the event, effectively leaving a window of opportunity for future purchases.  

Here is a great example of an order cancelation email, coming from RESY restaurant.

And if you’d like to send your own cancelation email (we hope you don’t), here is a handy template.

Hello [name],

We have received your cancelation request for [add a sentence with the product or service]

We are sending this email to let you know that we have canceled your order/reservation.

There will be no need for any further action from your end.

If you have any further questions, please reply to this email.

Wishing you all the best,
Team [company]

Parting thoughts

Transactional emails are an inherent part of any successful email communication strategy. In this article we took a look at some of the most common transactional emails, giving you examples and templates to refer to. 

Follow these tips to craft good looking, professional transactional email templates, and you are one step closer to email automation.





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