14 Email Marketing Designs Worth Testing in 2020

14 Email Marketing Designs Worth Testing in 2020

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Email marketing isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. The fact remains that people like email: it’s quick, efficient, and effective. In 2019, the total number of business and consumer emails sent and received per day reached 293.6 billion, and this is expected to climb to over 347.3 billion by the end of 2022.

To keep pace, email marketing design best practices, marketing strategies, and tactics will need to develop further to keep up with improvements in technology. Now that it is super easy to design responsive email templates, creativity becomes an even bigger factor than just looking good on all devices. Email marketing design trends in 2020 will dictate slicker experiences as marketers take advantage of developments in automated email to generate more revenue from welcome emails, cart abandonment emails, and other email communications with customers.

Below we’ve listed 14 of the best email newsletter design trends and inspirations for you to test in 2020 and make your email marketing efforts shine.

Email design example from Kate Spade
Image source: https://www.betaout.com

1. Interactivity is among the latest email marketing design trends

Sidebars and links within emails is just the beginning of the interactivity we can expect to see in support of email content as an email marketing design trend in 2019. Emails will continue to be designed to appear as a microsite within consumers’ inboxes.

Minor-interactions were a major email design trend in 2019, and they will continue to see widespread use in 2020 along with:

  • hamburger menus and search options
  • carousels
  • image galleries
  • offer reveals
  • add-to-cart functionality

These minor-interactions emerged as trends in email design to reduce barriers to engagement and produce clicks with high intent.

Animated gif of a Vimeo video.

2. Improve animation in emails with Animated PNGs

While animation, like the use of a GIF, has been popular in emails for quite a while, that hasn’t stopped the animated email trend from leveling up. Animated PNGs (APNGs) are rising in popularity, due to the fact that they are supported more widely across email clients than CSS animation. APNGs allow more color and transparency than GIFs, but if your email platform can’t support APNGs, the format allows you to use GIFs as a second option. APNGs also provide a level of user interaction, as animations are able to be turned on and off with the use of a switch within your email.

Email design example from FutureCare
Image source: https://emailmonks.com

3. Level up on personalization and segmentation

Dynamic content based on a variety of information sources will help marketers speak to the individual. With the advent of big data, content can now draw from a huge variety of consumer information to yield the most innovative email and website designs. Utilizing this trend in email design correctly when crafting personalized messages can improve open rates by 26%.

With a little help from artificial intelligence technology to crunch the massive amounts of information, email newsletter design trends will include a focus on master templates that allow tailored content to be dropped in. This will yield a beautiful email that looks and feels like a personal message. Personalization is also a defining web design trend in 2020. Chatbot technology will be honed as an AI tool for innovative website design, with these tools now able to have more seamless and fluent conversations with users.

Email marketing design from The Block Pack.
Image source: https://www.pinterest.com

4. Web and email newsletter design trends for 2020 invite you to use color confidently

Color blocking, contrasting colors to attract attention to your CTA, and bright backgrounds that tie together all elements of your email design are trends that will carry on in 2020. The same characteristics define this as a web design trend to watch in 2020, too. With the rise of hero images on websites, there becomes an excellent opportunity to leverage high-quality, colorful photos that make an impact on visitors. Each example you see of this email and website design trend can be easily emulated and used for your own inspiration.

Example of dark mode email design from Litmus.

Image source: Litmus

5. Catering email design for Dark Mode

However, not every email calls for a bright background. Dark mode has become a popular preference, with many operating systems and mobile apps offering users the choice between reading text on a light or dark background. Email apps are offering up dark mode too, and your emails need to be designed to look great no matter the background color. 

Images and logos are the things that you need to consider the most when designing emails for dark mode. Here are some things to think about:

  • Image colors should contrast against white or dark backgrounds equally. Consider light blue or orange when designing CTA buttons or other graphic image elements.
  • JPG images may need to be switched to PNG or SVG with transparency to avoid readers seeing white boxed images on a dark background.
  • Embrace dark mode from the beginning and start with a dark background when designing your email. If an email app or user isn’t using dark mode yet, the dark background will still stand out against a sea of other similarly colored emails.


Email design example from Apple's iPhone5.
Image source: https://www.pinterest.com


6. Minimalistic, simple, and clean designs

Mobile phones have remained the most common devices to access emails as we’ve entered into the new decade. With less space and shorter attention spans on this platform versus desktop, web and email design trends in 2020 cater specifically to mobile. Try simpler email content that’s easier to consume on the go with clear and easy to follow calls to action.

Example of an email marketing design from The Iconic.
Image source: https://www.pinterest.com

7. Keep it tidy and ordered

Well-balanced designs that are easy to consume will always be in the list of the latest email design trends. Organize content so it takes readers on a journey and directs them how to move through your email. One of the most innovative website design trends is the card layout. Made popular on sites like Pinterest, ecommerce and other businesses are starting to leverage this format to increase CTR and keep users engaged. Keep in mind, too, that a few trends in email design from the last decade remain relevant in 2020 too. These include using white space effectively so your images and text aren’t overwhelming. In doing so, you’ll communicate a lot of information in a clear, organized, and attractive way.

Example of email design trend from Designmodo.

Image source: DesignModo

8. 3D images will make your email marketing design pop

3D imagery can be difficult and time-consuming to create or develop for email, but the results are worth it. 3D images help create depth of field and make products or messages pop and come to life compared to traditional 2D images. Whether you’re just making text 3D or creating an eye-catching staged photo, 3D will make your images appear more lifelike and alluring. 

Image source: Magic Spoon

9. Textured illustrations will keep 2D images relevant

If you’re not ready to start using 3D images, don’t worry; there are still plenty of ways to make your 2D images stand out and grab the attention of readers. Adding texture and shading to images and illustrations will give your emails some depth and add tactical representation to objects. By playing with different textures, color contrasts, gradients, tints, and patterns, you can take a simple image and give it an entirely new aspect or emotion.

Example of email marketing design from Burberry.
Image source: https://www.pinterest.com

10. When leveraging trends in email design, make sure to match design with copy

Imagery, font, and copy that match the message and the brand persona is one of the web and email marketing trends you need to test in 2020. It helps establish your company’s identity and makes you instantly recognizable to consumers. Additionally, it keeps your message balanced and organized. With the importance of typography as a web and email design trend, you can use fonts to define your brand in an entirely new way. A few aspects of typography that you can mess around with include the size of the font, the type of font, and vertical spacing between lines.

Example of an email design from Seipp.
Image source: https://www.pinterest.com

11. Monochrome

In contrast to confident color usage and catering emails to dark mode, monochrome made a comeback in 2019 and will continue as a ubiquitous email and website design trend in 2020 – but it needs to be done right. A black and white scale is also among the latest web and email design trends to watch. This color palette (or lack thereof) creates striking contrasts and can make other elements of your email or web page stand out.

An email design example from WeWork.

12. Divide and conquer

Divide information in new ways. This web and email newsletter trend in 2020 means trying horizontal divisions, geometric designs, or angular grids that give equal importance to several messages in one email while maintaining order and visual interest. One way to do this is to prioritize one announcement at the top of the email and then give equal weight to other content in their own blocks. Another option is an icon library. This format option is among a great website design idea because it boosts organization and makes the page more aesthetically pleasing. An icon library can easily be implemented as an email marketing design trend in 2020, too, by formatting email content into icons.

Email design from J. Crew.
Image source: https://www.pinterest.com

13. Give tradition a twist with new email and website design ideas

Don’t fall into the same old holiday design clichés. Instead, give them a twist and modernize using the latest email design trends of 2020 so you stand out from the crowd and give something to your subscribers that will delight them with its uniqueness. You can use imagery that’s a nod to tradition and reimagines it in a way that consumers will appreciate. One retro web design trend making a comeback in a big way is glitch art. Glitch art gives your website or email a psychedelic appearance that users are craving in 2020. Try incorporating this email newsletter design trend in 2020 with videos, APNGs, or other dynamic content that will capture viewer attention and set you apart from the competition.

Example of a great email blast design from Handy.

14. Be [info]Graphic

Sometimes we need to convey lots of information to customers. Just as trends in email design that use animations and APNGs can help you avoid the need for lots of text, getting visual through infographic and visual maps help to convey a lot of statistical information in a way that leads the reader through the journey simply and clearly. Don’t be surprised if video infographics make their way into the mix soon, too, as an email and web design trend for 2020. Businesses are prioritizing video production now more than ever, and the infographic idea is easily translated into video as a type of visual map users can move through.

As you consider these web and email marketing design trends for 2020, also recognize the importance of having your beautiful emails land in inboxes. NeverBounce’s email verification tool comes with a guarantee that if more than 3% of valid emails bounce, you receive a full refund. Don’t let your well-designed emails go to waste in spam boxes; get them delivered and reach your customers the right way.

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