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Email Template Examples: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

When it comes to email template examples, there’s an embarrassment of riches. While these choices seem exciting at first, they can quickly become overwhelming. Establishing a recognizable brand is key to successful automated marketing. That can’t happen if you’re constantly switching templates.

Of the countless email template examples out there, the most clickable ones have one thing in common: brilliant design. Naturally, not all designs are created equal. (To take the guesswork out of this bewildering process, contact us at Email Broadcast for a free consultation.) In the meantime, here are a few hard-and-fast guidelines.

The Good

Flexibility Is Fab

Subscribers get bombarded with emails every day. That’s why it’s critical to generate messages that are helpful, informative, and engaging. The best email template examples are flexible enough to quickly and easily design messages with minimum fuss.

When exploring email template examples and options, ask the following questions:

  • Is it easy to drag and drop images into the template?
  • Can these messages be personalized?
  • Are the layouts clean and straightforward, with a two column maximum?
  • Does the template offer fonts that are legible on mobile devices?
  • Am I able to replicate my brand colors in this template?

Getting Personal

The most desirable email template examples can be personalized. Targeted emails earn loyalty and increase revenue. Choose a design that allows you to deliver personalized messages tailored to a customer’s interests, tastes, and needs.

premium email template example

Polished and Pointed

Because customers are constantly assailed with messages, explore email template examples that get straight to the point. Designs that showcase one or two images, brief amounts of text, and clear CTAs are good bets. Ignore the rest. 

If you have a lot to say to subscribers, never fear. You can always send a series of emails showcasing different aspects of your business. When it comes to automated marketing messaging, less is more, as the best email template examples show. 

Short and Structured

Bookmark email template examples that don’t require endless scrolling. Choose a layout that can be easily navigated on mobile devices. If you have a lengthy message, the template should allow you to link it clearly. Ideally, your email’s design will open the door to a satisfying experience with maximum impact. 

The Bad

Clean Up the Clutter

Putting too many images into an email creates confusion and aggravation for the reader. It will also cost you an “unsubscribe.” It’s better to send several pointed emails with single images than jam a bunch of pictures into one message. Look for email template examples that offer two or three fields that help the reader focus.

Camouflaged Call to Action

The most effective mail template examples offer a single call to action. This button should be highly visible, big enough to click on a mobile device, and clearly marked. CTAs that are text-only are easily lost in translation—resulting in lost sales for you. 

camoflauged call to action
failed fonts in email templates

Failed Fonts

Fonts that are difficult to read are guaranteed to lose your subscribers. Search for email template examples that have several font options that are clean, clear, and legible. Ask several readers to sample the fonts before choosing one. And last but not least, always test a font’s visibility on mobile devices. 

Mobile-Challenged Messages

According to Litmus, 44% of email is now opened on a mobile device. That makes it even more important to explore email template examples featuring simplicity. Forcing readers to endlessly scroll, shrink, or enlarge images isn’t smart. Instead, you’re better off choosing a template that features a single column but has an eye-catching CTA button.

The Downright Ugly

Obviously, there are some hard-and-fast rules about what kind of email template examples look terrible. Here are pitfalls to avoid when choosing yours:

Clashing Colors

Pleasing combinations of colors aren’t just market savvy; they’re also easy on your customers’ eyes. When reviewing email template examples, weed out choices with clashing, distracting colors, even if they are arresting. Subscribers that open email eyesores will just delete them.

Ideally, your email template should feature three colors maximum that differ from the text. And speaking of text, don’t use light text on a light background. Otherwise, your message will go straight to the trash.

color theory for email templates

Too Much Text

Lots of email template examples offer plenty of space for text, but you should keep your wording spare. The last thing subscribers want is to wade through pages of text to get to your point. Sparse, simple words paired with one or two attractive images should communicate your point.  

404 personified illustration

Blocked Images

Many email template examples invite you to download lots of gorgeous images, but this can work against you. Subscribers with limited bandwidth, or ones that don’t download images by default, may not load photo-heavy emails. When this happens, they see nothing but blank space when opening your message. Be sure to combine images with copy to get your point across.

Giant Social Media Buttons

While links to social media can be helpful, they shouldn’t overpower your logo. Look for email template examples that are small but easily accessible on mobile devices. Remember, you are promoting your brand, not Facebook. (Unless, of course, your brand is Facebook… in which case, never mind.)

E-mail templates examples wireframe

A Few Email Template Examples Worth Your Time

One source for terrific email templates that tick all our boxes is Really Good Emails. Not only does this site have thousands of terrific designs, but they are well categorized. Whether you’re searching for a template to suit an industry, promotional campaign, or survey, there are some great examples here.

…Or Hit the Target on the First Try

Of course, the varieties of email template examples are endless. Once you see all the choices, you may feel overwhelmed. That’s understandable; Team Email Broadcast can help. We have tons of experience creating custom templates for a variety of customers. Contact us for a free 20-minute consultation to custom-design an email design that works best for you. Soon you’ll have an email marketing campaign that’s worthy of a close-up.

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