It’s that time of year again! As Labor Day approaches, we’ve all got that back-to-school spirit—even if we’re not all returning to the classroom. Brands are serving up special promotions to slough off summer inventory and introduce autumn’s offerings. Back-to-school sales emails can be playful, nostalgic, and downright dazzling. Let’s check out the designs that caught our eye!
Subject: This pop quiz comes with a prize!
When readers answer the quiz by clicking or tapping on an answer button, they go to a landing page with their results—and an offer to take 25% off Lumosity Premium.
This is a cute and simple strategy that gives readers a chance to engage with the content and have a little fun. And, this goes to show that you can even get creative building a “survey.”
Subject: i’m leaving you
We’ve gotta hand it to Chubbies for the clever copy. Their brand voice never fails to disappoint. The design of this email is pretty straightforward, but the tone of voice and text takes it to the next level. One interesting move Chubbies made was a three-tier call-to-action (with each one going to the same landing page). We haven’t seen this used before in email, have you? (We’re curious about the click rate!)
Subject: Back-to-school savings! 20% off everything📝🍎
Here’s the animation:
Cook Smarts has been sending out a series of back-to-school sales emails with eye-catching themes. There’s nothing fancy, but excellent design best practices are in play here. We love the GIF, well-formatted live text, and custom CTA button.
Subject: Back to School Savings: 20% off 📕
“Back to the grind”… hehe, get it? This email makes great use of color to call our attention to important information. The CTA buttons are nice and specific (no boring “click here” CTAs) and the white space throughout makes this email feel like a breath of fresh air. But a little live text would go a long way here to break up those images and make this email more inbox-friendly.
Subject: Grab your Bark to School supplies!
We must have really needed a good laugh because punny emails are certainly speaking to us. This one from BarkBox made us smile (and it was pretty long — we had to trim it!). BarkBox always does a great job of mixing photography with illustration, which helps readers get an understanding of what they’re looking at and creates some levity. Even more live text here—especially over the top of background images—would only make this email better!
Subject: This Year, Head Back To School With Class
Hello, yellow! Doesn’t this Roxy header text pop against the all black-and-white background? It’s eye-catching, helping to draw readers in before the email switches to a more traditional product display layout.
Subject: Thanks for being a fan – Here’s 10% OFF for you!
Muji sent an illustrated back-to-school sales email design that stood out in our inbox amidst a lot of photo-heavy campaigns. Everything about this is simple and sweet!
Subject: The DC Shoes Back To School Collection
DC Shoes often sticks to a nearly all black-and-white design aesthetic, which results in emails that always look polished and sleek. The black background with white type and white CTA button isn’t something we often see, and the combination looks sharp. The primarily black-and-white color scheme gives the brand identity an edge—one that’s underscored perfectly in the expression of the girl in the last photo.
Subject: Up 75% OFF: Back to School + Back To Work
In addition to paper and pencils, coffee is an important school supply. 🙂 And this email from Bodum, another coffee company, is really easy on the eyes. All the gray tones offer a soothing effect, and the clean lines in the photo collage provide a sense of organization. This is all intentional, as the message of the email is to help readers “get organized and start the year a little less stressed.” Well done, Bodum.
Subject: Your Kiddo’s New Kicks, Now 25% Off.
The unique highlighter effect in this email from Puma caught our eye. The hot pink adds an element of surprise and playfulness to a straightforward product grid email. The campaign is clearly well-thought-out and cohesive, from the hero image to the copy to the hand-drawn lines. Little touches like this make a big impact.
Bonus: A Template for Back-to-School Sales Emails
Ready for the back to school season? Get your readers excited by sending a well-designed and stunning email that includes a special promotion, deal, or new product offering! To make things easir for you, try BEE Pro for free—the drag-n-drop design tool is super easy to use, and all emails are mobile-responsive.
Plus, you’ll get access to free templates, including new back-to-school and end-of-summer templates.
Here’s a sneak peek…
Don’t delay! Sign up right away and you’ll be ready for September!