Email Newsletter Layout Design: Best Practices to Boost Conversions

Ronita Mohan

Great email newsletter layout design is tricky to execute—there are a lot of elements to include in email blasts that increase open and click rates.

If you want to achieve your newsletter goals, you need to design with your subscribers in mind.

We share the best practices for designing email newsletter layouts that will be easy to repurpose for different topics and audiences.

When revamping your newsletter layout for 2021, create a project plan to track tasks, changes, and metrics.

You can use email software to design and send newsletters—these platforms help define the best sizes for your email content, as well. 

Add a Header to Your Email Newsletter Layout Design

When you begin designing your email template, ensure you add a header that can be customized depending on the subject matter of your mail.

You can see from this nonprofit newsletter example how the organization showcases their company ethos in their ‘thank you’ email to donors.

Source: Venngage

An attractive and relevant header will make your newsletter stand out in a crowded inbox—thus increasing the chances of your subscribers opening it and reading it.

The header image can include pictures from your business, of your products, or illustrations pertaining to your company.

It’s important to create a header that reflects the content of your newsletter—while you can keep your header static, if that appears misleading to readers, consider changing it. 

Prioritize Content in Email Newsletter Layout Design

The aesthetics of your email newsletter layout can take precedence over content—but design should follow the function of your newsletter.

Look at this newsletter from Protest Sportwear, for example. Note the various sections they have included to highlight their products and discounts.


The email newsletter layout is designed around these elements. If you don’t have as many products to showcase, don’t try to shoehorn content into your newsletter.

Plan out your content for the newsletter and adjust your layout accordingly. If you have a product launch to share, you may want to use a layout that mentions that one event.

During a busy month, you could have news pieces about new accessories, changes in management, and upcoming offers, which will require more newsletter segmentation.

Make Room for Visuals in Email Newsletter Layout Designs

Text-only emails have their place but your newsletter layout design should accommodate visuals because images make newsletters more attractive to users.

We’ve mentioned header images, but individual stories should also be paired with brand visuals that tell readers what to expect from the content, like this Tattly newsletter.


There are a variety of tools you can use to create attractive visuals.

Stock photo websites are a dime a dozen, but you can also include attractive illustrations. Use a graph maker to showcase data to your subscribers and encourage more email clicks.

Add CTAs in Email Newsletter Layout Design

Writing and designing an email isn’t an end goal on its own—nor is the aim of the newsletter simply to reach your audience.

Once someone receives your email, what do you want them to do? Yes, you need them to click on the email and open it, but that shouldn’t be the end of the interaction.

Within the body of your newsletter, your audience should find impetus to engage with your brand further. That is where calls-to-action come in.

Your email newsletter layout design needs to include sections for CTAs—and a visual hierarchy that points the reader to the CTA, like this example from Reelgood.


Include a Footer in Your Email Newsletter Layout Design

A footer is an essential part of any email newsletter layout design—this is where you can include contact information, social media links, and sharing buttons.

Here’s a great example from Hush Puppies. Note the various elements they have included—links to their product pages, social accounts, and contact details. 


The footer is also where you can include product return policies, privacy policies, and unsubscribe links.

End the newsletter by adding your mailing address or your business location.

Conclusion: Email Newsletter Layout Design Should Be Easy to Scan

To perfect your email newsletter layout design, you need to follow these best practices:

  • Create a header
  • Don’t choose form over function
  • Add visuals
  • Design for a call-to-action
  • Add a footer

Creating these essential elements of a newsletter design will help to improve your open and click rates.

About the author:

Ronita Mohan is a content marketer at Venngage, the online infographic maker and design platform. Ronita regularly writes about marketing, design, and small businesses.

Twitter: @Venngage

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