Boost Email Engagement with Powerful Preheaders

Boost Email Engagement with Powerful Preheaders

Table of Contents:

  1. Introduction
  2. The Importance of Email Marketing
  3. The Power of a Great Subject Line
    • 3.1 The Role of the Email Pre-header
  4. Where Does the Email Pre-header Go?
  5. Why is the Email Pre-header Important?
  6. How to Add an Email Pre-header
  7. Email Pre-header Best Practices and Examples
    • 7.1 Differentiate from Your Subject Line
    • 7.2 Incorporate a Call to Action
    • 7.3 Tease an Incentive
    • 7.4 Summarize Email Content
    • 7.5 Elaborate on the Subject Line
    • 7.6 Build Curiosity
    • 7.7 Use FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)
    • 7.8 Sprinkle in Emojis
    • 7.9 Personalize the Pre-header
    • 7.10 Be Concise
  8. Conclusion
  9. FAQs

The Importance of an Email Pre-header for Effective Email Marketing

In today's competitive e-commerce landscape, email marketing continues to be a critical tool for brands to reach and engage their customers. As an e-commerce brand, you understand the value of email marketing, and you want to leverage it to promote your new products. However, you may face a common challenge: finding the right balance between saying too much and saying too little in your marketing emails. This is where the email pre-header comes into play.

The Role of the Email Pre-header

The email pre-header, also known as email preview text, is the text that appears immediately after the subject line in an email. It is often displayed next to or underneath the subject line, depending on the recipient's email service and device. While often overlooked, the email pre-header plays a crucial role in maximizing the impact of your email campaigns.

Where Does the Email Pre-header Go?

Before diving into the best practices and examples of email pre-headers, it's essential to understand where the email pre-header is located. The pre-header appears as muted, gray-shaded text right after the subject line. It provides additional context and entices recipients to open your emails, much like the way a product packaging's tagline grabs a consumer's attention.

Why is the Email Pre-header Important?

There are two primary reasons why the email pre-header is crucial for your email marketing success. Firstly, if you do not take the time to populate and customize the email pre-header, email service providers like Gmail may automatically fill it with the first text they find in your email campaign. This default line of text often fails to capture the recipient's interest and can even give the impression that your brand is unaware of email marketing best practices.

Secondly, the email pre-header acts as an extension of your subject line, supporting and providing more context to intrigue your subscribers further. By leveraging this space effectively, you can encourage recipients to open your emails and discover the value you offer.

How to Add an Email Pre-header

Adding a pre-header to your emails is a relatively straightforward process. Depending on the email marketing platform you use, you'll typically find an email pre-header field within the campaign settings. By populating this field with compelling and engaging text, you can enhance the effectiveness of your email campaigns.

Email Pre-header Best Practices and Examples

To make the most of your email pre-header, here are ten best practices and tactics to consider:

  1. Differentiate from Your Subject Line: Your pre-header should compliment, not repeat, your subject line to avoid redundancy.
  2. Incorporate a Call to Action: Just like your email content, include a clear call to action in your pre-header to encourage recipient engagement.
  3. Tease an Incentive: Utilize the pre-header to announce discounts or offers, creating excitement and driving conversions.
  4. Summarize Email Content: Use the pre-header to summarize the main message or important details showcased in your email.
  5. Elaborate on the Subject Line: Expand on your subject line in the pre-header to provide additional information and capture attention.
  6. Build Curiosity: Create intrigue and anticipation by being cryptic or mysterious in your pre-header, leaving recipients curious to open the email.
  7. Use FOMO (Fear of Missing Out): Tap into the power of scarcity and urgency by highlighting limited-time offers or exclusive deals.
  8. Sprinkle in Emojis: Emojis can draw attention and convey emotions effectively, making your pre-header stand out in crowded inboxes.
  9. Personalize the Pre-header: Tailor the pre-header by incorporating the recipient's name or other personalized elements to increase engagement.
  10. Be Concise: Keep the pre-header length between 30 to 80 characters to ensure maximum visibility across devices and avoid overwhelming the recipient.

By following these best practices and getting creative with your pre-headers, you can take your email marketing campaigns to new heights, boosting open rates, click-through rates, and ultimately, conversions.


In the world of email marketing, the email pre-header is an often-underutilized asset that can have a significant impact on the success of your campaigns. By understanding its importance and implementing best practices, you can optimize your email marketing strategy, improving engagement and ultimately driving more sales for your e-commerce brand.


Q: Can I customize the email pre-header based on the recipient's behavior or segment? A: Yes, many email marketing platforms allow you to personalize the pre-header based on user behavior or segment, allowing for more targeted and relevant messaging.

Q: Should I include the entire pre-header in the email body as well? A: It is not necessary to include the entire pre-header in the email body. Use the pre-header as a preview to entice the recipient to open the email and discover more.

Q: Can I test different pre-headers to see which one performs better? A: Absolutely! A/B testing different pre-headers is an effective way to determine which approach resonates best with your audience and drives higher engagement.

Q: Can I use emojis in the pre-header? A: Yes, emojis can be a valuable addition to your pre-header, but use them sparingly and ensure they align with your brand's tone and style.

Q: How often should I update my email pre-headers? A: It's good practice to periodically review and update your pre-headers to keep them fresh and relevant. Consider aligning them with ongoing promotions or seasonal events.

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