Imagine, for a moment, that you’re a sales rep trying to reach out to a potential customer.
You’ve done your research, and you know this person is the perfect fit for your product or service. You’ve even crafted the perfect email, complete with a compelling message and a strong call to action.
But there’s just one problem: the subject line. You’re not sure what it should be.
If you’re like most salespeople, it’s tempting to default to something boring and generic, like “Product Information” or “Follow Up.”
But here’s the thing: about 33% of email recipients open an email based on the subject line alone. So if your subject line isn’t interesting and relevant, chances are your email is going straight to the trash.
In this article, we’ll provide you with 51 of the best sales email subject lines that will help you increase open rates. We’ll also give you tips and examples for crafting your own subject lines and making the most of your email marketing efforts. So let’s get started!
Best Sales Email Subject Lines
Here are 51 examples to help you craft the best email subject lines for your sales emails and boost your open rates. (Don’t forget: you can also use these subject lines for LinkedIn messages or other social media outreach.)
Psst… Looking for more? Check out email templates and sequence examples from real SaaS companies.
Cold Email Outreach Email Subject Lines
Cold email outreach is often a daunting task for sales reps.
You’re reaching out to potential customers who may not even know your company exists. Grabbing their attention is often more difficult than it would be if they knew you.
So what do you do?
First, you need something that’s compelling and attention-grabbing, but also not so aggressive that it comes across as spammy. It’s a fine line to walk, but here are 10 examples of cold email subject lines that strike a pretty good balance:
- “Are you looking to [solve a pain point]?”
- “Quick question about [prospect’s company]”
- “[Mutual connection referral name] suggested I reach out”
- “Thought you’d be interested in [compelling offer]”
- “[Recepient’s job function] at [recipient’s company]”
- “Did you see our [recent achievement/news]?”
- “Are you missing out on [potential benefit]?”
- “Can I help with [problem your product/service solves]?”
- “Would you like to [benefit of product/service]?”
- “Streamline [recipient’s job function] at [recipient’s company]”
The average open rate for cold emails is 44%, but that number can easily go lower if you don’t have a compelling subject line. Try some of these cold email subject lines out and see how your open rates increase.
Cart Abandonment Sales Email Subject Lines
If you have an eCommerce business, you know the frustration of cart abandonment all too well. It’s like a punch to the gut. And it’s a pretty common occurrence—a staggering 69.99% of shoppers abandon their carts on average, across all industries. This leaves sellers with a mountain of lost sales.
Enter cart abandonment emails—send these emails to customers who have abandoned their cart to remind them of the items they were interested in and encourage them to complete their purchase.
When crafting a cart abandonment sales email subject line, it’s important to grab the customer’s attention and remind them of the items they were interested in. And that’s not a herculean task; you (or your sales team) can achieve this by using a fine mix of personalization, a compelling offer, and a sense of urgency.
Here are 11 great subject line examples for cart abandonment sales emails that will grab your customers’ attention and increase your conversion rates:
- “Hey [customer name], did you forget something?”
- “Don’t miss out on [item left in cart]”
- “Your cart is waiting for you at [company name]”
- “You’re just one click away from [benefits of product/service]”
- “Last chance: [discount/promotion] for your abandoned cart”
- “Don’t let [item in cart] slip away”
- “Your cart is still full of [number] items”
- “Complete your purchase and get [bonus/freebie]
- “Don’t miss out on the [item in cart] you were eyeing”
- “Finish your purchase and get [fast/free shipping]”
- “Finish setting up your account”
You’ll notice these subject lines have something in common: they show the customer they left something behind and their purchase is just a click away. Best of all, cart abandonment emails boast an impressive 45% open rate and 21% click-through rate, culminating in 50% of users clicking through to make a purchase.
Meeting Request and Follow-Up Email Subject Lines
Have you ever sent a sales email, only to hear crickets on the other end? Every salesperson has and it’s a frustrating feeling.
So it can be tempting to just give up and move on to the next prospect. But guess what? Failing to do follow-up emails or calls could cost you 98% of your potential sales, as only two percent occur during the initial contact—in many (if not most) cases.
That’s why following up with prospects after an initial email or meeting is an important part of the sales process. You need to keep the conversation going, provide additional information, and move the prospect closer to making a purchase.
Here are 10 great examples of follow-up sales email subject lines to help keep your sales conversations going with prospective customers and send successful meeting request emails:
- “Just checking in on [previous conversation/meeting]”
- “Thought you’d be interested in [new development/offer]”
- “Quick question about [previous conversation/meeting]”
- “Did you see our [recent achievement/news]?”
- “Follow-up on [previous conversation/meeting]”
- “How can we help with [problem your product/service solves]?”
- “Are you ready to [next step in sales process]?”
- “Don’t miss out on [limited time offer]”
- “Can we schedule a call to discuss [previous conversation/meeting]?”
- “Thanks for [previous conversation/meeting]. Here’s [additional information]”
These follow-up sales email subject lines use personalization but, more importantly, remind prospects about the previous relationship/connection you’ve had with them. This often helps to maintain the continuity of conversations and move potential customers closer to making a purchase.
Nurturing Sales Emails
Sending nurturing sales emails (or marketing emails) to prospects is another critical part of the sales process. These are emails you send to prospects who are not yet ready to make a purchase, but who may be interested in your product or service.
The goal of lead nurturing emails is to provide valuable information, build trust, and keep the prospect engaged until they’re ready to make a purchase.
Below are 10 examples of nurturing sales email subject lines you can use:
- “How [problem your product/service solves] is impacting [industry/market]”
- “Meet the [team/customer] who transformed their business with [product/service]”
- “10 ways to [improve/optimize] your [process/strategy]”
- “You’re invited: [webinar/event] on [topic related to product/service]”
- “Why [industry/market] leaders trust [company name] for [problem your product/service solves]”
- “The truth about [common misconception in industry/market] and how to avoid it”
- “How [customer] achieved [benefit of product/service] with [product/service]”
- “Exclusive offer: [discount/free trial] for [product/service]”
- “The [industry/market] guide to [problem your product/service solves]”
- “5 [industry/market] experts reveal their secrets to [improvement/success]”
Nurturing email subject lines like these are powerful because you’re telling prospects “here’s some educational content to teach you something you may not know.” And it works—research shows that after customers are exposed to educational content, especially at the early stages of their buying journey, they become 131% more likely to buy from the associated brand immediately.
Re-Engagement Sales Emails
Re-engagement sales emails are emails you can use to reconnect with potential customers who have shown interest in your product or service but have not responded to your previous outreach efforts.
And these emails are a vital part of any sales strategy, as they can help you keep your email list fresh and engaged, and potentially lead to new sales.
You can use re-engagement sales emails after a period of inactivity, when you have new information to share, like a new app or product update, case studies, or other information that may pique the interest of your potential customer, or when you have a special offer or promotion. And if you have a limited-time offer or a discount code, a re-engagement email can be a great way to entice them to take quick action. You can also use automation tools to create sequences that are sent out at specific intervals after your initial outreach.
Below are 10 examples of re-engagement sales emails you can use to get inactive subscribers to open your sales emails again:
- “We miss you!”
- “New and improved – check out our latest updates”
- “Limited time offer – 20% off your next purchase”
- “Are you still interested in [product/service]?”
- “Welcome back – here’s a special offer just for you”
- “Missed you – here’s what’s new”
- “Your loyalty rewards are waiting”
- “Exclusive events for members only”
- “Complimentary trial – just for you”
- “Come back and save – your exclusive discount is waiting”
Now let’s look a few best practices you should keep in mind while using these sales email subject lines.
10 Best Practices For Creating Good Email Subject Lines
Here are a few best practices to keep in mind when using the subject lines we’ve shared above:
1. Use Short Subject Lines — 50 Characters Or Less
It’s often best to keep your email subject lines short and sweet. Aim for 50-60 characters or fewer, as this is often the maximum number of characters that will often display on most mobile devices.
And as we live in a world where over 40% of people open their emails on a mobile device, it’s super important to optimize your email for mobile. You want to have email subject lines looking like this:
Not like this:
The former goes straight to the point, showing the reader exactly what they’ll be getting once they open the email—they’ll be learning something about how to run their account-based marketing (ABM) campaigns in a way that’s probably easier than what they’re currently doing.
The second subject line, on the other hand, doesn’t really communicate much value, ending with ellipses. And that doesn’t send any important message that’ll grab the reader’s attention and entice them to open the email.
So, actively look to use clear and concise language and avoid using unnecessary or filler words. For example, instead of saying “Join us for a meeting to discuss potential business opportunities,” use “Meet to discuss potential business opportunities.”
This lets the recipient quickly understand the purpose of your email and decide whether or not they want to open it.
2. Use Personalized Subject Lines — With The Recipient’s Name Included
Another best practice for creating effective sales email subject lines is to personalize them by using the recipient’s name.
Personalized email subject lines are a great way to grab the reader’s attention, show that you’re addressing them directly, and help build a sense of trust and connection with them. And when they connect with and trust you, your emails are more likely to be opened.
So try using the prospect’s name in the subject line, along with a relevant and interesting message. For instance, instead of “Meet to discuss potential business opportunities,” try “John, let’s discuss potential business opportunities.” This personalizes the email and shows the recipient that you are interested in them and their needs.
3. Be Clear About What’s Inside The Email (Don’t Use Clickbait)
It’s often tempting to use clickbait or misleading language to improve open rates, but it can easily damage your credibility and make it less likely that the recipient will open your email in the future.
Instead, use a subject line that accurately reflects the body of the email you’re sending and provides the reader with a clear idea of what to expect inside it.
For instance, instead of “You won’t believe what happened next,” use “Learn about our new product launch.” This clearly conveys the purpose of your email and allows the recipient to decide whether or not they want to open it.
By following this best practice, you can improve the chances that your email will be opened and read, and make a great first impression on the recipient.
4. Use Urgency And Scarcity To Get Higher Open Rates
By creating a sense of urgency or scarcity, you can encourage the recipient to open your email immediately, rather than waiting until later. This can be especially effective when you have time-sensitive offers or promotions, or limited-time events.
So instead of saying “Get a free trial of our latest product,” try something like “Sign up — get 50% off today only.”
Usually, this would create a subtle fear of missing out (FOMO) that encourages the recipient to take action and take advantage of your offer—since it is time-sensitive and won’t last forever.
5. Test Different Subject Lines To See Which Ones Work Best
By testing different subject lines, you can compare how each one performs and know the ones that are most effective at driving opens and engagement.
For example, you might find that a subject line like “New product launch” performs better than “Don’t miss out on our new product launch.” By regularly testing and refining your subject lines, you can improve the performance of your email campaigns over time.
So, where you can, try creating two or more versions of the same email, with different subject lines, and send them to a small sample of your email list. Measure the open rates and other metrics for each version, and use the results to determine which subject line performed best.
6. Avoid Spammy Words Like “Free” And “Sale”
Spam filters often flag words like “free” and “sale” in your subject line, which can prevent your email from reaching your recipient’s inbox.
And when your emails go to spam instead of your inbox, it’ll negatively affect your email deliverability and reduce the chances of your email being opened—especially if a large percentage of your emails go to spam folders.
To avoid this, use alternative language that passes across the same message without triggering spam filters. For example, instead of saying “Free gift with purchase,” try “Limited-time offer: get a gift with your purchase.” This conveys the same message without using spammy words that will get your email sent to spam.
7. Keep It Relevant To The Recipient
Getting your sales emails opened and read is almost all about making your subject lines relevant to the recipient.
And it’s not rocket science; simply do some research on their interests and needs, and use that understanding of your ideal customer to craft a compelling subject line that speaks directly to them.
For example, if you’re targeting real estate agents, you might try a subject line like “Easy ways to find new tenants.” If your target buyers are real estate agents, this headline immediately shows relevance; they go “oh this email is talking about getting more tenants? Let’s see!”
So, next time you’re crafting a sales email, make sure to keep your subject line relevant to the recipient to increase your chances of getting them to open and read your email copy.
8. Trigger Curiosity And Make It Intriguing
They say “curiosity killed the cat” but in this case, it can help drive engagement. Tap into your target audience’s curiosity by using email subject lines that are, by nature, intriguing and make them want to learn more.
Ask questions, use pain points, make predictions, craft compelling headlines, etc. With just a few words, you can create suspense, raise eyebrows and entice people to open your email. Examples:
- “What Happened When We Increased Prices?”
- “The Surprising Results of Our A/B Test”
- “Find Out How Top Brands Dominate Their Industry”
And if it feels appropriate, throw in an emoji or two to add some excitement and increase their curiosity. Just remember to be mindful and use emojis in moderation since they can easily be misinterpreted or misplaced altogether. You don’t want your email to be seen as an eye sore.
9. Use Power Words That Evoke Emotion
Power words are words that elicit an emotional response from the reader. They have been proven to be incredibly effective in email subject lines—especially in your industry—because they grab your prospect’s attention, arouse curiosity, and create an impact.
For example, if the recipient is a business owner, you might use words like “successful,” “profit,” or “growth” in your subject line. These words are likely to be highly relevant to the recipient’s needs and interests, so they can help to create an emotional response that encourages them to open your email.
10. Include A Call-To-Action (CTA) In Your Subject Line
By explicitly asking the recipient to take a specific action, you can increase the chances that they will follow through and engage with your email.
And this applies to simple requests like “Read Now” or “Check This Out,” all the way to more complex ones like “Register Now For A Free Webinar.”
Pro tip: Try to identify the main goal of your email and craft a sales email CTA that encourages the recipient to take the desired action. For example, if you’re sending an email asking people to RSVP for an event, try using a CTA like “RSVP Now” or “Secure Your Spot.” Or if you’re offering a discount, try something like “Save 50% Now” or “Take Advantage Of Our Sale.”
Whether you’re looking to improve your email open rates, generate leads, or drive sales, these best practices can help you create catchy email subject lines that get results.
With 51 tested email subject line examples to choose from, you’re sure to find the perfect one for your next email campaign.
So why wait? Start creating your own successful sales email subject lines today!