Transactional email & marketing email – Customer Communication Solutions

Transactional email & marketing email - Whats the difference?

The use of email marketing is still a popular choice with many marketers, with nearly 4.1 billion email accounts in existence worldwide, the opportunity for brands to invite themselves into people’s daily lives is ever so clear. Email marketing continues to deliver great response rates for brands and marketers, with over 90% of businesses in the UK using it as a cost effective tool to create a direct conversation with their customers and future customers. 

The Strategic use of email and the knowledge of its effectiveness is widely known as 9 out of 10 marketers’ state that email is one of the most important tools they have at their disposal. With the main objectives of driving sales and customer retention being at the forefront of all strategies.


With the ever growing use of email in this new technological age, what types of emails are there? And how do people use them? There are two types that are more commonly used transactional email and non-transactional email or more commonly known as marketing email.

So what’s the difference? 


Transactional Email

Transactional emails are a result of an automatic event triggered by an action on a digital platform or customer service query that are sent directly to an individual and not a large mailing list, these emails mainly come in a form of;


  • Welcome messages
  • Legal Notices
  • Statements or receipts
  • Invoice
  • Notification email
  • Password reset
  • Double opt-in forms
  • Follower request via social media



Marketing email

Compared to transactional emails that are triggered by a pre-defined action, Marketing emails are used as a strategic communication to a selected recipient list that includes a commercial message to ensure commercial activities.


  • Sale notification
  • New product update
  • Newsletters
  • Event invites
  • Solution promotion
  • 3rd party offers


Compared to the transactional email, marketing emails will need to be accountable to the local legal standards and data protection laws. Whereas transactional messages do not, as they are a result of a pre agreed action.



How to turn transactional into marketing

A lot of people may think the standard plain text transactional email is just part of the process of a recent purchase or registration, but a recent report from IBM found that transactional emails generate 2x more open rates than a standard marketing mailing and at the same time it is an excellent platform to cross/up sell products or relevant content.

Amazon and ITunes are the perfect examples of this by regularly informing their customers of other items or artists that may interest them, which is powered and populated by their recent purchasing and viewing data. 

Another statistic shows that transactional emails have a higher CTR compared to marketing emails, this is probably due to the message being heavily personalised from recent conversion activity. 

So if you feel your transactional emails need to be evaluated, why not find ways of adding in relevant products and call to action sections to help with your initial marketing efforts.


If you want to find out how email can benefit your business.   Contact us today       



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