4 min read

Unbeatable Open Rates: Mastering the Art of Email Subject Lines For Marketing

Written by Andriy Boychuk
4 min read
Table of Contents

    As it stands, email subject lines are the second most important factor in the reader’s decision whether to open or not. Brand awareness and the sender’s name are the only factors that top it.


    Because it’s often the first thing recipients see. And if they check out the sender’s name first, they’ll then turn to the subject line to decide whether opening it will benefit them.

    A significant number of the emails you send won’t be seen because the average open rate for marketing emails across all industries is just over 20%. No matter how fantastic your design is, how personalized it is, or how elegant the graphics you use, if you can’t convince readers to open them in the first place, it won’t matter.

    That’s not to say that spending time on top-notch email content is a waste of time, though. That content is what generates conversions and increases sales. However, you need to put effort into getting the opens that result in clicks.

    That’s why we created email subject line guide, which we constantly review and update based on our experience and observations in the industry.

    What is the goal of the email subject line?

    The main goal of an email subject line is to grab subscribers’ attention and convince them to click and engage with the email content. It’s crucial not to mislead subscribers with misleading subject lines. The subject line should serve as a hook, enticing recipients to explore the rest of the message in the email.

    Things to include in email subject lines


    Personalization can make the recipient feel the email was crafted specifically for them, increasing engagement rates. Try using the recipient’s name or referring to their previous interactions with your business. 

    Email subject line character limit 

    Keep it short and sweet: Most email clients truncate subject lines after about 60 characters. Aim to convey your subject line length in about 50 characters to ensure it’s seen in its entirety.

    Create Urgency:

    By creating a sense of urgency or scarcity (e.g., “24-hour flash sale” or “Only 3 items left”), you can stimulate immediate action.

    Use Action Verbs:

    Action-oriented verbs can inspire users to click. Start your subject line with verbs to create a sense of action.

    Test and Analyze:

    Use A/B testing to find out what works best for your audience. Always keep track of the metrics to understand what works and what doesn’t.

    Be clear about the benefit:

    The reader should be able to grasp what they will get from the email right from the subject line. Clarity can outperform cleverness.

    Use Numbers:

    Just like in headlines, numbers (especially odd numbers) can draw attention and set clear expectations.

    Things to Avoid in Email Subject Lines

    Avoid ALL CAPS:

    Using all capital letters can make your email look like spam, potentially decreasing open rates.

    Avoid Excessive Punctuation:

    Similarly, too many exclamation points or other types of punctuation can make an email appear spammy.

    Don’t Mislead:

    Make sure your subject line accurately represents the content of the email. Misleading subject lines can lead to high unsubscribe rates and could damage your brand’s reputation.

    Avoid Spam Trigger Words:

    Certain words can trigger spam filters and should be avoided. Examples include “free”, “buy now”, “save $”, “earn $”, etc.

    Don’t Ignore Mobile:

    Over half of emails are opened on mobile devices. Ensure your subject lines are optimized for smaller screens.

    Avoid Being Too Formal:

    Remember, email isn’t a formal communication method. Keep your language conversational and friendly.

    Don’t Forget to Proofread:

    Spelling and grammar mistakes can harm your brand’s image. Always double-check your work.

    Things to Avoid in Email Subject Lines

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