6 Types of Trigger Emails You Can Use to Nurture Customers

trigger emails

If you’re still sending your subscribers emails that prove you don’t know them, you should start using trigger emails now. At worst they’ll unsubscribe. And at best, you’ll have to unsubscribe them, because they haven’t opened an email from you in ages. 

The nurturing process doesn’t stop after acquiring new customers. To transform customers into loyal advocates, you must provide value throughout the lifecycle journey. Sending trigger emails based on customer’s behavior is an effective strategy to retain the attention of your audience.

Triggered emails help you send tailored messages to the right person, and maybe most important, at the right time. The key to an effective email is a mix of relevancy, timeliness and value.

Majority of marketers continue to send out the same old email drip campaigns which result in, you guessed it, in the same old results.

Instead, with triggered email marketing you can get:

  • Higher engagement and click through rates,
  • Increased customer retention and overall customer satisfaction.

What are triggered emails?

Triggered emails are automatically sent in response to an action performed by website visitors. These actions can be web page visits, email opens, social media engagements, and ecommerce behavior.

The difference between normal and triggered emails is that the later are sent after taking subscriber’s data and action into consideration, making them more relevant.

This automated process is also called behavioral marketing automation. Such emails are successful because they are timely and highly relevant to the recipient. Thanks to sophisticated targeting, you can build trust with customers.

  • In event-based emails, messages trigger by actions performed by customers inside or outside your application that occur at a specific time.
  • Segment-based emails are sent when customers fit a defined set of conditions, like attributes or activities.

Why triggered emails are so efficient?

The reason why these emails are successful is that the recipients expect them. When they hit the “Subscribe“, “Buy“, or “Download the guide” buttons, the users assume that you would send an email to reassure them about the process.

The customer would be concerned if they didn’t receive a welcome email after subscribing. Or the order confirmation email after they purchased your product. They would wonder what happened and might get in touch to see if their order went through.

In consequence, the customer’s experience can be affected. It also adds unnecessary pressure on your customer support team. By using trigger emails you reduce the likelihood of said outcome.

What benefits do trigger emails have?

  • Increased customer engagement
  • Higher acquisition
  • Increased revenue
  • Better retention
  • Building customer trust
  • Increased customer loyalty

Types of Triggered Emails

1. Welcome email

If someone has opted in for your newsletters or created an account, sending a welcome email is the first thing to do. When sending a welcome email, you should take the opportunity to thank your new subscriber. You could offer some kind of discount or trial.

Welcome emails also let the subscriber know who you are and what they can expect from your emails.

At the root of the welcome email is a trigger: the signup. It indicates users feel positively about your company and that they want to get started.

By using the signup trigger, you can determine where your user is in their onboarding process. Moreover, provide them specific setup instructions.

2. Activation Email

Having people sign up is great, but retaining them is where the money’s at.

Let’s say a potential customer has created an account. Months after signing up, they still have not purchased anything. You can send them triggered email to remind them about the account. Maybe reiterate the benefits of your product or service.

3. Shopping cart abandonment

In a shopping cart abandonment email you have to use what you know about your user to prompt their return.

This can include adding photos or a description of the product they left behind, as well as providing an incentive for them to return. Such as a discount.

4. Win back email

Sometimes saying nothing speaks the loudest. Especially when it comes to an app, website, or store visit. With  trigger based emails, you can use this silence as a way of prompting users to return.

If you have a customer who has not purchased anything from you during the last couple of months, now might be a good time to show them you still care. Send them a triggered marketing campaign to win them back. You can offer a discount or special promotion to show them that you want to keep them as a customer.

5. Customer satisfaction email

Sending a triggered email to follow up with customers regarding their customer service experience  can provide you with the information you need to make any internal improvements. You can also use this opportunity to give the customer an incentive for providing their feedback with an offer or discount. It build trust and shows that you care.

6. Empty Queue email

An “empty queue” email explains that there are no more posts scheduled, and provides a CTA to go back into their platform to schedule some new posts.

It’s a great reminder for your users and also a retention tool since it ensures that they continue to use and get value out of their product.


The key to a successful triggered email marketing program is to deploy different triggers that will guide prospects down the purchase funnel at different stages.

In order to engage your shopper with the appropriate message in the moment, marketers need to use a variety of triggered emails to make the path to purchase as seamless and helpful as possible.

Start Your Free Premium Trial