9 Email Design Trends to Help You Win More Customers in 2023

9 Email Design Trends to Help You Win More Customers in 2023

Email Design Trends

If you ever come across a marketing email from 2016 and compare it with the more recent emails, you will realize how far email designs have come. Years ago, you could never imagine that it would be possible to add animations in emails or allow the users to take action from the email itself (AMP technology). Dark mode, minimalistic emails, GIFs, illustrations, and 3D images have been around for a couple of years. In addition, we are excited to welcome some new entries in the list of email design trends for 2023. 

Let’s take a look.

1. A medley of real images, illustrations, and shapes

Images are undoubtedly the safest bet for the hero section. In the coming days, marketers will use a combination of real images, illustrations, and shapes to create unique designs that stand out.

Brooks Brothers has used a brilliant medley of illustrations, shapes, and real images in their Global Running Day email.

Email design trends. Brooks Brothers has used a brilliant medley of illustrations, shapes, and real images in their Global Running Day email.

2. White Space

White space or negative space helps in breaking down the email content and making it easily readable. A cluttered email distracts the readers and prevents them from taking any action. Therefore, you should add ample white space so that the email is easy to scan. There are two types of white space, namely:

Active white space: Negative space around the crucial elements of the email.

Passive white space: Negative space surrounding the template and content borders, and the space between different sections.

In this email by Shinola Detroit, the sections in red depict active white space, while the ones in blue show passive white space.

White space or negative space helps in breaking down the email content and making it easily readable.

2. White Space

White space or negative space helps in breaking down the email content and making it easily readable. A cluttered email distracts the readers and prevents them from taking any action. Therefore, you should add ample white space so that the email is easy to scan. There are two types of white space, namely:

Active white space: Negative space around the crucial elements of the email.

Passive white space: Negative space surrounding the template and content borders, and the space between different sections.

In this email by Shinola Detroit, the sections in red depict active white space, while the ones in blue show passive white space.

White space or negative space helps in breaking down the email content and making it easily readable.

3. Geometric and abstract shapes

Just like different colors convey different meanings, shapes also have variable purposes. While circles convey infinity and eternity, squares and rectangles convey courage, discipline, durability, and security. Triangles symbolize direction and stability when the tip is pointing upwards. Inverted triangles show dangerous situations or a downfall. They represent movement, speed, excitement, risk, and danger. Polygons with multiple sides help in portraying a long procedure in a simplified manner. They show hard work, quality, and rigor. 

Vivino has used different shapes to portray different meanings.

email design trends, Vivino has used different shapes to portray different meanings

Abstract shapes, on the other hand, add a dash of fun to your emails.

Here’s an email example by Tattly showing excellent usage of abstract shapes.

Email design trends, Tattly showing excellent usage of abstract shapes.

4. Wave patterns

Wave patterns help in breaking up the conventional grid format of emails. Adding a curve works as a separator between two sections and enhances email readability. Waves work as directional cues and encourage the readers to scroll the email till the end. They also help in bringing attention to the call to action. 

Here’s an email from Winc that uses wave patterns to separate different sections of the email.

Email design trends, wave patterns

5. Neon colors

Neon colors are bright and vibrant shades that impart an upbeat and happy feel to the emails. If you want to be perceived as a young brand, neons are the perfect choice for you. Just remember that extensive use of neons can be overwhelming for the readers. So, strike the right balance and keep in mind three important points:

  1. Use neons judiciously and only when you want to highlight any email elements. 
  2. Neon colors look more striking on dark backgrounds.
  3. Avoid neon backgrounds as they are hard on the eyes. 

Take a look at this email by BlackWolf that has used neon colors to draw attention to the 31% off and the CTA.

Email Design Trends, Neon Colors

6. Gradients

Gradients impart a retro look and feel to your emails. You can either create single color gradients or multi-color gradients. Single color gradients refer to the gradients that go from lighter to darker. Multi-color gradients transition from one color to another to still another. 

As human minds are wired to read from a lighter to darker color, gradients encourage the subscribers to read till the last fold. Gradients also add more depth to your email designs. 

You can use gradients in different ways as mentioned below:

  1. Bold or subtle gradients
  2. As a focal point of the email design or as the background
  3. Animated gradients in the background
  4. In the CTA
  5. In the typography

Take a look at this email by Boticinal that uses beautiful gradients to highlight their huge range of products. 

Email design trends, gradients

7. APNG

According to a survey conducted by Mailmodo, 67% marketers use GIFs in their emails. APNG is like GIFs who went abroad for further studies. APNG or Animated Portable Network Graphics is an open standard for animated bitmap graphics and an alternative to MNG (Multiple-image Network Graphics). 

APNG is better than GIFs for the following reasons:

  1. APNG supports 8-bit alpha transparency and 24-bit colors.
  2. APNG has better quality and resolution as compared to GIFs. 
  3. There is no unsightly border at the edges of APNG unlike GIFs. 

Take a look at the image below to understand the clear differences between the two. 

White space or negative space helps in breaking down the email content and making it easily readable.

8. Animated CTAs

CTAs are the most integral part of any email. After all, your conversions rely heavily on the placement and design of the CTA button. With subscribers getting hundreds of emails each day, it has become imperative to have a unique CTA button to bring a higher click-through rate. So, in the years to come, marketers will experiment with animations in and around the CTA. It can be achieved with a GIF or CSS animation. 

Take a look at this email by Magic Spoon that has used a GIF around the CTA to draw the reader’s attention.

Email Design Trends - Animated Images

9. Memes

Memes have become almost inseparable with our routine lives. They entered social media and became a powerful way to market products. People are more receptive to memes as they are fun and relate to the current events. Email marketers should also give a shot to meme marketing in 2023. 

Just make sure that you add a copyright disclaimer along with the meme to avoid any legal trouble. 

Really Good Emails has used a relevant meme in their weekly newsletter.

Email Design Trends - Memes

Wrapping Up

Email marketing professionals, including designers and developers keep exploring newer avenues every year. They strive to bring freshness to the subscriber’s inbox and drive higher email conversions. Which email design trends are you likely to use in 2023? Well, here’s a suggestion. Incorporate multiple design elements like gradients, animated CTAs, wave patterns, and plenty of white space to leave a lasting impact on the readers.

Kevin George is Head of Marketing at Email Upler

Kevin George is Head of Marketing at Email Uplers, one of the fastest-growing custom email design and coding companies, and specializes in crafting professional email templates, PSD to HTML email conversion, and free responsive HTML email templates in addition to providing email automation, campaign management, and data integration & migration services.

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