Keeping an Eye On Email Design Trends

by Syrup | Jul 10, 2018

As one of the earliest forms of digital marketing, email has amazingly stood the test of time. And for those of us that work with email on a daily basis, seeing growth in email design trends shows us that email is here to stay. That’s why when opting-in for a brand’s newsletter, I’m looking for more than just deals & updates – as an automation specialist, I’m looking for inspiration. The following two examples illustrate the nuances I’m loving in textured backgrounds and neutral backgrounds:


It’s not something that is easily executed in an email broadcast. In this example from Tupelo Honey, they’ve mastered the aspects of subtlety, consistency (it’s used in the majority of their newsletters), and design. The light blue background is easy on the eye and highlights the featured images, while the intricate arrow-shaped graphics keep the eye moving down the remainder of the email. Not to mention the continuity it creates when breaking into new sections. This one encourages the viewer to scroll all the way through the email all the while keeping focus on their product: food and drink specials!

example of texture in email design trends

Example of texture in email design trends

A few takeaways:

  1. Textured backgrounds aren’t necessary. But when executed well, they can create motion within a stagnant email and consistency within the brand.
  2. If you do experiment with textured backgrounds, keep it light. Don’t overwhelm your viewers with a bright background that loses sight of the purpose behind your content. Ensure that your email still drives home the message that you’re looking to promote.
  3. Lastly, make sure the landing page the email drives to continues this experience by keeping your design and content consistent. There’s nothing worse than a user feeling lost once they’ve clicked on your material.

Neutrality & Simplicity.

Dress Up Boutique, on the other hand, has mastered simplicity in their newsletters. With their neutral themes and minimal content, they let their product do all the talking – which is obviously essential to an e-commerce brand. However, my most favorite element of this email is the navigation included in the header. It’s short and sweet, but indicates the multiple options the boutique offers. And, from a more technical side, it creates 4 new calls-to-action within the email – upping your email CTR and traffic driven to your site.

Example of simplicity in email design trends

Example of simplicity in email design trends

A few takeaways:

  1. If you’re going for simple, keep it simple. Don’t feel like you need to balance a white background with tons of colorful content. Especially in e-commerce, let your product images speak for themselves.
  2. Let your viewers know what you have to offer! You may want to promote one idea in your content, but it’s never a bad idea to include a call to action that tells more of your brand’s story. A short navigation in the header or footer is also a great way to accomplish this.
  3. And again, landing page experience is so important to those that click through. Ensure that your message carries over to your landing page content and design and matches with your email experience.

At Syrup, it’s one of our M.O.’s to stay up to date with the latest trends. We work as a team to share our ideas and determine which directions are best for our clients. So, whether you’re looking for help with email design or simply looking to get some ideas for your business’s email, we’re here to help! Feel free to reach out to us here or check out some of our design work here.

About the author