What is An Email Sequence? A Complete Guide [2023]

February 16, 2023
Ammar Mazhar
What is An Email Sequence? A Complete Guide [2023]

Table of contents

In today's digital age, where people are bombarded with email, it's important to stand out and make a lasting impression while you are sending an email to your user. Here is where the email sequence can help you. 

In a specifically designed manner, sending out emails and informational messages to your users can help you be the one with the email that stands out. 

We'll discuss email sequences in this blog post, including what they are, how they work, and how you can use them to further your marketing objectives. So let's get started and learn everything there is to know about email sequences!

What is an email sequence?

An email sequence is an automated series of emails sent to a certain set of people to foster a relationship, add value, and ultimately motivate a desired action. Within an email marketing platform, these sequences are set up using several triggers, conditions, and actions. Each email in the sequence should have properly thought-out content that will draw the reader in and add value while also moving the sequence closer to its end goal. 

When creating an email sequence, the target audience should be chosen, the flow of emails must be planned, and each email in the sequence must be carefully written with relevant content that serves an email's specific purpose. 

A B2B company, for instance, might choose a different strategy than a B2C company, as the latter's target market and objectives are more likely to change. Understanding the target audience and their needs are essential to create email sequences that are valuable and pertinent. 

Let us give you some examples of how different businesses can use email sequences based on the nature of business: 

  • eCommerce businesses can use email sequences to follow up on abandoned carts, promote new products, or provide post-purchase support.
  • Digital marketing companies can utilize email sequences to follow up on leads or to keep clients informed and involved.
  • SaaS businesses can use email sequences to nurture leads and inform potential users about the benefits of their products.

This is precisely how email sequences can help businesses serve their users through tailored emails. 

What is the difference between a drip sequence and an email sequence?

Drip sequence and email sequence are two different strategies or approaches for email marketing. Although the terms are often used interchangeably, there is a difference between the two. 

Infographic: Drip Campaigns Vs. Email Sequence

A drip sequence is a compilation of automated emails sent to subscribers over a predetermined period, typically to nurture leads toward a conversion. Drip sequences are initiated by a certain activity, such as completing a purchase or subscribing to a newsletter. The purpose of the drip sequence is to advance the conversion goal by educating, informing, and fostering trust with the customer. For example, a company selling a product may have a drip sequence that first welcomes the new subscriber, then sends them more information about the product, followed by a special offer

On the other hand, an email sequence is a series of emails sent to a specific list of subscribers to achieve a particular objective. The objective could be to make a sale, promote a new product, or simply keep subscribers engaged with the brand. 

The degree of personalization is a critical way that drip sequences and email sequences differ. Each email in a drip series is specifically crafted for each recipient, making them highly personalized. The emails' content is determined by the recipient's activities, tastes, and previous encounters with the brand. 

On the other hand, email sequences are often less personalized because the same content is sent to the entire subscriber list.

Both drip sequences and email sequences have the potential to produce positive results, but the strategy you choose will depend on your objectives and the audience you hope to reach. While email sequences are better for keeping subscribers interested and marketing products, drip sequences are frequently more effective for nurturing leads and establishing trust with potential consumers. 

The degree of automation between the two is another difference. Every email in a drip series is sent automatically based on predetermined triggers or events, making them highly automated. On the other hand, email sequences are typically less automated and may need some manual intervention. A business might follow up with subscribers who have not replied to the prior emails in the sequence. 

The degree of tailoring, level of automation, and sort of goal they are supposed to accomplish distinguish the two most. Your goals, target audience, and the kind of message you want to send will determine whether you employ a drip sequence or an email sequence.  You can use whatever campaign suits you best based on these differences. 

Benefits of an email sequence

Email sequences are a powerful tool for businesses and organizations looking to improve user engagement and communication efforts. Increased conversions, higher open and click-through rates, and better lead nurturing are just a few advantages of a proficient email sequence. 

Let's have a look at some insights into the benefits of an email sequence:

Infographic: Benefits of an email sequence

1. Helps in scaling your business

Email sequences can help businesses reduce repetitive and time-consuming tasks, such as follow-up emails, onboarding new users, or promoting a new feature. Businesses can save time and refocus on other critical activities while still giving their prospects and users a tailored experience by automating these operations. 

2. Aids quick conversion

Leads can be turned into paying users for businesses with the help of an efficient email sequence. Companies should test and adjust their email campaigns using email sequences, eventually increasing conversion rates.

3. Segmentation helps in providing value

Businesses can provide more value to their users by delivering communications that are tailored to their unique requirements and interests by using an email sequence that is divided into target-specific groups of people. Also, segmentation aids companies in enhancing the relevance and efficiency of their email messages, which increases open and click-through rates.

4. Increased sales

Using an email sequence can help you generate more leads and close more sales. You can create opportunities to upsell and cross-sell your product by sending out sequenced emails. Suppose you are providing valuable information to your users via email. In that case, there are more chances that the prospect is connected with your brand throughout the customer lifecycle journey and eventually stays to be a returning customer. 

 8 Types of email sequences:

1. Welcome email sequence

The first communication between a business and a new subscriber occurs through a welcome email series. Its purpose is to introduce the product to the user and foster a relationship with them. A welcome email sequence usually consists of automated emails sent over a certain amount of time, beginning with the user’s sign-up. 

A welcome email that conveys appreciation to the subscriber for signing up and gives them a rundown of what to anticipate from the company moving forward is usually the first email in the series. The emails after this one may contain additional details about the company, its product, and feature usage.

Welcome email sequence example

2. Onboarding email sequence

Onboarding email sequences are designed to help a new user get up to speed with a product. An onboarding email sequence aims to provide new customers with a smooth and seamless experience, reducing the chances of churn and improving user satisfaction. An efficient onboarding email series is an investment in customer success and may be very important to the development and expansion of a business.

The emails in the sequence can include tutorials, videos, FAQs, and case studies to help customers get the most out of the product. By providing valuable information and resources, businesses can build trust with new customers and increase their chances of becoming long-term users.

Onboarding email sequence example

3. Nurture email sequence

A nurturing email sequence can increase the likelihood that free trial users will later convert to paying consumers by keeping them interested in the brand. A nurturing email sequence can improve the likelihood that subscribers will become paying customers by offering helpful content and offers. A nurturing email series should contain emails with advice, insights, business news, and special deals. 

Nurture email sequence example

4. Renewal email sequence

Prior to the renewal deadline, the renewal email sequence may include a number of follow-ups and reminders. The emails can stress the advantages of renewing, present special discounts, and give users the details they need to finish the renewal process. Businesses may reinforce the likelihood that customers will renew their subscriptions and stay with them by offering a seamless and easy experience.

Email workflows can be used to set up renewal email sequences and incorporate them into a bigger drip campaign to give users a consistent and tailored experience.


5. Re-engagement email sequence

By using behavioral emails to understand better subscribers' requirements and preferences, re-engagement email sequences can be engaging. The re-engagement sequence is often triggered by a lack of engagement or activity from the user and is part of a more extensive nurture email sequence. 

Re-engagement email sequence example

6. Improved sales email sequence

The enhanced sales email sequence can be activated by particular actions or events, such as subscribing to a newsletter or completing a purchase, and is frequently set up as a component of a more comprehensive marketing or sales strategy.

A follow-up, a reminder, and a series of special offers can all be included in an improved sales email sequence in order to persuade recipients to take the desired action. Businesses can boost their chances of generating a sale by providing subscribers with pertinent and worthwhile information. 

Improved sales email sequence example

7. Event email sequence

Event email sequences are designed to notify users about an upcoming event, such as a seminar or an online yearly meeting. The purpose of an event email sequence can depend upon the nature of the event. For example, suppose there is a social event coming up. In that case, you can automatically set up reminders to have a more significant audience present on the event day, or you can set up an event email sequence to spread the word. 

Event email sequence example

8. Feedback email sequence

Feedback email sequences can help gather user feedback, which can be used to identify areas of improvement and increase customer satisfaction. A feedback email sequence can help build customer loyalty and increase repeat business by showing that a company values its customers' opinions. 

A feedback email sequence can offer insightful information about what customers like and hate about a company's services, which can be utilized to enhance marketing initiatives and, more precisely, target promotions.

Feedback email sequence example

How to build an email sequence with AppFlows?

If you want to build any of the email sequences mentioned above easily and flawlessly, then AppFlows can do it for you.

With its highly intuitive and advanced automation builder, you can build email sequences for events such as signup, onboarding, trial expiry, churn, and feedback. Here take a look:

AppFlows automation builder

Moreover, you can design your emails within the builder and assign a highly segmented list of users you want to target. 

Also, you can configure the timing of your emails and can split the journey with triggers and events related to your product.

6 Best practices for email sequences

1. Segment your email list

One of the key best practices for email sequences is to segment your email list. This means dividing your list into smaller groups based on shared characteristics, such as demographics, purchasing habits, or interests. By segmenting your list, you can personalize your emails and ensure they are more relevant to your subscribers. This can lead to higher open and click-through rates and help you avoid sending irrelevant or unwanted messages.

2. Personalise the emails

Personalizing your emails is another best practice for email sequences. This can involve using the recipient's name in the subject line or greeting, tailoring the content of the email to their interests or needs, or including information about their previous interactions with your business. Personalization can increase engagement and build stronger relationships with your subscribers, leading to higher conversion rates and user loyalty.

3. Maintain adequate intervals between emails

When creating an email sequence, it's essential to maintain adequate intervals between each email. This will give your subscribers time to absorb and act on the information in each message and can help avoid overwhelming them with too many emails. You can use email marketing software to automate your email sequences and ensure the correct intervals are maintained.

4. Use your name in the emails

Including your name in the emails can help build a relationship with your subscribers and give them a sense of who is behind the brand. This can increase the trust factor and make it easier for them to engage with your content.

5. Test them before sending 

Before sending any email sequence, it's essential to test the content and subject line to ensure that it looks and performs as expected. This will also give you a chance to make any necessary changes or adjustments to improve the overall effectiveness of your email marketing efforts. 

6. Track your performance

6.1 User acquisition cost

Measuring the cost of acquiring a new user is an essential metric in evaluating the success of your email marketing efforts. This can be calculated by dividing the total cost of your marketing campaign by the number of new customers acquired. Keeping track of your user acquisition cost can help you identify areas where you can improve your campaigns and optimize your marketing budget.

6.2 Conversion rate

The conversion rate is the percentage of users who take a desired action after receiving your email. This could be making a purchase, filling out a form, or signing up for your product. By tracking your conversion rate, you can determine the effectiveness of your email campaigns and make adjustments to improve your results.

6.3 Time to customer conversion

The time it takes for a user to convert can also be an important metric in evaluating the success of your email marketing efforts. By tracking the time from when a customer first receives your email to when they make a purchase or take another desired action, you can gain insights into how long it takes to engage your subscribers and optimize your email sequences effectively.


By following best practices such as segmenting your email list, personalizing your emails, testing before sending, and maintaining adequate intervals, you can create effective email sequences that engage your target audience and drive conversions. 

There are several suggestions and marketing tools you can use to improve your engagement email sequences and produce even more excellent results, regardless of whether you use automation software or rely on the knowledge of your sales team and salespeople. 

The options are unlimited, from using engagement sequences and re-engagement emails to crafting bespoke onboarding emails. Your email sequences will help you achieve your company objectives and increase user retention if you take the appropriate approach and include a few essential components.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a cold email sequence?

A cold email sequence is a series of emails sent to potential customers who have yet to have any prior interaction with your business. A cold email sequence aims to introduce your business, build relationships, and eventually convert the recipient into a paying customer. Subsequent emails in the sequence build on this initial interaction and offer additional information, such as a demo call or social proof, to further engage the recipient and move them toward conversion

How long should email sequences be?

Your campaign's precise aims and objectives can affect the length of an email sequence. A well-structured email sequence should typically have 5-7 emails, though the cadence may vary depending on how comprehensive the campaign is. 

A shorter email sequence might better serve a more direct promotional offer, whereas a more extensive onboarding or lead nurturing process might call for a lengthier one. Also, It's essential to maintain an adequate interval between emails, allowing the recipient time to digest the information and respond before sending the following email in the sequence.

What is the best automation tool for email sequence?

The best automation tool for email sequences depends on your specific needs and preferences. Some popular email automation tools include:

AppFlows is a user-friendly email automation platform that offers automation features and a wide range of pre-built automation recipies.

Drip is an eCommerce-focused email marketing platform that offers advanced automation and segmentation capabilities.

ConvertKit is an email marketing platform designed for bloggers and content creators, offering automation and tagging features.

Aweber - an email marketing platform that offers automation and landing page creation features and a wide range of integrations.

What email format should I use for email sequence?

Multiple email formats can be used to draft and create an email sequence. This depends upon what kind of email sequence you are making. For example, while writing a welcome email sequence, a different template is used; similarly, every sequence has its different email format. 

Some commonly used email formats are: 

  • Storytelling 
  • Problem- Solution format 
  • How to format 
  • Newsletters 
  • Promotional format

Author Bio

Ammar Mazhar

Ammar Mazhar

Content writer by day and a book nerd by night, Ammar Mazhar has been writing for 3 years for B2B and B2C businesses. As a wordsmith, Ammar knows how to write SEO-optimized content that your users will find insightful, igniting results for your business.

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