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How To Write Effective Order Confirmation Emails?

Written and researched by experts at AvadaLearn more about our methodology

By Sam Nguyen

CEO Avada Commerce

Drive 20-40% of your revenue with Avada
avada email marketing

Marketers often spend a lot of time and effort to craft an amazing email campaign, hoping to increase the open and click-through rate. However, when they are trying to optimize the email marketing effort, many ignore the one email that every shopper expect and wait for:

The order confirmation emails.

These emails have a 4x higher open rate than any regular promotion email, making them the perfect opportunity to upsell and cross-sell, convey important information, or simply put the brand into the customer’s mind for the next purchase. But only a handful of marketers have optimized the order confirmation emails for higher engagement and more conversions.

In this post, let’s learn with me on:

  • How to capture buyers’ attention with your emails
  • How to get new customers by having an automation campaign
  • What order confirmation email templates to use
  • Which companies are killing it with these emails
  • And more

Read on, take notes, and feel free to apply the tips and templates to your email marketing campaigns. Here is your ultimate guide on how to write effective order confirmation emails.

What is an order confirmation email?

What is an order confirmation email?
What is an order confirmation email?

An order confirmation email is a type of transactional emails that a store sends immediately after a customer completes the order. The email would inform the buyer that you received and processed the order. Although there are no strict rules on what to include, order confirmation emails often cover information about the last order, including: acquired products, delivery address, the amount spent, and estimated delivery time.

You can see why many eCommerce businesses just use the order confirmation email as a receipt, sending required information so the customer knows that he/she purchased successfully. But it is more than that, it is also the first step to turn one-time buyers into repeating buyers, and eventually brand’s loyal customers.

An order confirmation email, as a transactional email, often triggers when a completed purchase happens and gets sent automatically to customers.

Most eCommerce platforms like Shopify or BigCommerce have this functionality in house. However, these solutions may be limited or too basic. Online merchants that want to create more sophisticated order confirmation emails often turn to email service providers - which give more flexibility, robust automation features, and a more advanced approach.

Why should you use order confirmation emails?

Why should you use order confirmation emails?
Why should you use order confirmation emails?

Order confirmation emails often have the highest open rate and click-through rate, and the lowest order rate. Because these emails connect directly to a customer’s order, they are one of the most relevant and valuable transactional emails.

It is a no brainer that customers are more likely to click on order confirmation emails, but the opportunity right here is the engagement. The potential to promote your products, services, and brand lies within order confirmation emails is huge.

You may already know that repeat customers play a big part in a store’s revenue. In fact, returning customers spend 67% more than new buyers. This makes order confirmation emails an excellent place to promote cross selling items, and encourage future purchases.

How do order confirmation emails work?

How do order confirmation emails work?
How do order confirmation emails work?

A good order confirmation email can capture the buyer’s excitement, eliminates confusion, and, most importantly, builds the foundations of a strong relationship with your customers. The main components of an order confirmation email are:

  • Confirmation that a customer successfully acquired a product.
  • The amount of money that the customer spent.
  • The estimated delivery time.
  • The customer’s address to ship the item. These elements are only the essentials. The power lies in the details that you can attach into these emails. Based on your strategy and target customers, you can add details such as:
  • A limited-time discount offer for the next purchase.
  • A sweet thank you message at the top of the email (which works great for first-time buyers)
  • Product listing for cross-selling and upselling.
  • Invitation to follow your social media accounts.
  • Asking to leave a review and feedback
  • Introduction to different kinds of promotions: loyalty program, partner program, ambassador program, mobile app, events, etc. Usually, you would include these details in other promotion email activities. But if you find the golden opportunity to provide captivating information in the transactional emails, you have a big chance to succeed with even a bigger revenue.

Types of order confirmation emails

Types of order confirmation emails
Types of order confirmation emails

Based on your type of eCommerce company, there would be many types of order confirmation emails that you can use.

1. Order confirmation emails

First, and the most basic, you have a purchase confirmation email sent when a customer places an order on your online store. This confirmation email provides details on the order and reassurance that the customer’s order has been successfully placed and processed.

Similar to account registration confirmation emails, order confirmation emails are a standard for all eCommerce stores nowadays and help shoppers double check if they have the right products in the cart and if they entered the correct delivery address. You also provide more information about the shipping time and customer service.

And, of course, this is an excellent opportunity to promote more products to the new customers.

2. Shipping confirmation emails

A part of the order is the shipment process, so it is no surprise that you need a second email for shipping confirmation. The goal behind this email is to reassure the customer that their order is on the way. The store can provide a specific arrival date, along with other shipping information, like current location, tracking number, delivery company, and more.

3. Order receipt emails

In this digital age, everything can have a soft copy on the internet, the same thing for receipts. This digitized receipt can help customers apply for taxes reduction, add to accounting, or simply to ask for a refund later. A good shopping experience always provides customers with what they need, so the receipt is also important.

4. Booking confirmation emails

If your business let customers book a flight, a train ride, a car, a meeting, an accommodation, an event, or any other type of service then booking confirmation emails are necessary. They will provide more details about the customer’s reservation and serve as a digital ticket, saving money printing paper tickets.

5. Cancellation confirmation emails

Sometimes, customers choose to cancel an order, then you should send an email to confirm the cancellation. You may not like that, but it is a part of being an eCommerce store, so don’t take it personally. Cancellation confirmation email should confirm to customers that their action has been completed. This is also your chance to collect feedback to have better insights about customers and improve future email campaigns.

How to write effective order confirmation emails?

How to write effective order confirmation emails?
How to write effective order confirmation emails?

Now that you know what your order confirmation emails need and should do, let’s see the important aspects of creating an effective order confirmation email campaign.

Order confirmation emails’ subject lines

Although order confirmation emails’ subject lines are important, they are frequently overlooked. While an order confirmation email is standard and well expected by customers, there are still many creative things to do that can improve the open and click through rate.

When we are talking about a great result, subject lines definitely play an important role. Here are top 5 best-performing order confirmation email’s subject lines:

  • ‘Thank you for your order’: Simple and straightforward, this subject line is exactly what the customers want to see and has a good performance.
  • ‘Your {Store’s name} Order Confirmation [#12345]’: This detailed subject line is useful to give buyers everything they need to know. They immediately recognize the order based on your brand’s name, and what the confirmation number is. If they have questions, they can reference the subject line without reopening the email.
  • ‘Great News! We’ve got your order #12345’: This subject line adds a bit of positivity and excitement, which can match the customer’s mood when they receive the confirmation email, knowing that their favorite item is coming.
  • ‘Order Received - {Store’s name} Order #12345’: This subject line focuses on the shipping confirmation, which is great news to the buyers. With all the important information included in the subject line, the email can have a higher open rate and repeat views.
  • ‘Your order has been received - {Store’s name}’: This subject line gets straight to the point and includes the order number at the end. The tone is passive, which works well for formality and removes the brand’s personality. If you want a professional, high-converting confirmation subject line, this is it.

Order confirmation emails’ content

Although hitting the ‘Place The Order’ button gives much joy and excitement, your shoppers still can have an uncertainty feeling, regardless of your excellent check out process and multiple good reviews. Your order confirmation emails exist to put buyers at ease after they place an order and have a better shopping experience.

The key is to give them crucial information in your email’s content, by showing the three Ws of their order in an easily understandable way: Where - When -What. These three headlines will give the buyer all they need to know about the order, from the delivery address (Where) to the expected delivery date (When). There is also a short summary of the order (What) with the product’s description, quantity, size, price, and the chosen payment method.

In the remainder of the email’s content, you can remind about the return policy, encourage the reader to join your newsletters, engage with other content, and download your mobile app. What to include will depend on your email strategy, but keep in mind that your content should always show the next step and help set an expectation for the company.

Order confirmation emails’ sending times

Buyers expect to receive an order confirmation email as soon as they make a purchase. That is why eCommerce stores automate this process so emails can be delivered instantly, and only automation tools can accomplish such a task.

With a tool like AVADA Email Marketing, you have an automation workflow that instantly triggers when an event happens. In the case of order confirmation email, the trigger is when a customer completes a purchase. Then, you can add an email to send. There is a pre-made template, but you can edit and customize to fit your brand more. You can add logo, images, change the fonts and color, this would give customers a seamless shopping experience.

More than that, you can create an order confirmation email series, which nurtures the new customers and transforms them into repeating customers.

Order confirmation email automation workflow

Order confirmation email automation workflow
Order confirmation email automation workflow

Based on your business’s approach, you can create an order confirmation email automation workflow for many purposes. Like in the image above, it is a premade email workflow in our app. With this, you will send an order confirmation email 5 minutes after the purchase, including a coupon for the next order.

But this is only one type of series, you can add more into the workflow. Since the order confirmation email gave practical information and set expectations about the buying process, you should keep the customers engaged with your brand and guide them in the right direction. Some ideas for other emails in the series are:

  • An email for customers to update references and get a coupon (for segmentation and data collection).
  • An email to show what is new on the website (for content or product promotion).
  • An email with a guide for the products bought (for content marketing).
  • An email with complementary products in the category (for cross-sell).
  • An email to ask for reviews and feedback a couple days later (for insights and customer service).

Order confirmation email templates

Order confirmation email templates
Order confirmation email templates

An app like AVADA Email Marketing allows great flexibility in the creation, design, and timing of your order confirmation emails. The layout for these emails are often simple for the best result. Let me show you a beautiful and straightforward order confirmation email template.

As you can see in the picture above, the email starts with a thank you note. Further, the email provides the customers immediately with an image of the product, plus all the specific information like image, pricing, quantity, details, payment method, shipping method, and a coupon code for the next purchase.

There is also a button to view order that takes the customers back to the store. By having a template like this, you can easily edit and add more elements into the email. Your subject line can be simple as: “Order placed successfully! It’s on the way to your home!” or “Thank you for ordering! Here is a coupon for the next purchase!”.

If you need another template for shipping confirmation email, which is also a part of an order confirmation email series, here is one.

Shipping confirmation email
Shipping confirmation emailv

In this email, customers can see an announcement that their order has been shipped. The customers can check again if the product is the right item and also have a tracking number to see the shipping process. Your series can get much more personalized than this, but you get the idea.

Order confirmation email examples

A good order confirmation email will build a relationship with the customers and guide them to the next step of becoming a good friend (and many good deals await too). Let’s see the best order confirmation email examples from other companies. Learn and take a note for your business!



As mentioned, an order confirmation email needs to convey the three Ws: Where - When - What, and ASOS is the best example here for that. The email has everything the customers need to know, from the delivery address to the delivery date. A short order summary shows the product’s description, price, size, quantity, code, chosen payment method, and the lovely copy of “It’s ordered!” at the top adds some excitement.

Knowing that returns and refunds are confusing and time-consuming, ASOS gives you the option to cancel the order right in the email, under a headline of “Changed your mind?”. What’s more, ASOS relieves customers by reminding of their flexible return policy. This way, they guarantee the customer satisfaction from the order confirmation email and reduces any uncertainty with shopping online.

2. Cult Beauty

Cult Beauty
Cult Beauty

Cult Beauty captures the customer’s attention right from the headline with an outstanding design. With that excitement, they continue to show the details of the transaction. The right side of the email is where the fun happens, with the option to call support, check new products, change reference, and check out beauty articles. This is a brilliant example of engaging with customers through the order confirmation email, providing different levels of engagement, and for compelling reasons.

3. Food52


Food52’s order confirmation email has a similar design to their website with a simple approach. The email immediately lets the customers know about the order with the headline “Your package is on its way!”, followed by the order number, a button to track the package, and the items in the order. There is a navigation bar to shop or check out recipes and other features.

Below, Food52 has a way to encourage customers to buy more by offering rewards for referral. One stone hits two birds, the store gets more leads and encourages the customer to buy again. Now that is smart.

4. Zalando


Zalando’s order confirmation email has some notable details for multiple benefits:

  • An important thank you note
  • A link to cross-sell products with “You might like”
  • The option to quickly cancel the order. This option lets customers add more items into the cart.
  • More images of similar products.
  • A content block with essential information about order placement, modification, and return.
  • Finally, free return information, other benefits, and links to social media accounts, app stores.

A huge open rate and engagement may be why Zalando puts so much into their order confirmation email. With this approach, they can maximize the potential of guiding the new customers into next steps, whether it is buying again or simply following their Instagram account.

5. Airbnb


Booking confirmation emails are a type of order confirmation emails, providing more details about the customer’s reservation and even serving as a digital ticket, which the customer can use in real-life when coming to the accommodation place. Airbnb’s order confirmation email is full of information, with the staying dates, address, guest numbers, price, and a button to change the reservation.

Below, customers can find support, referral coupons, and an article on unique things to do nearby the staying location. It is a great way to provide more helpful information, which you can learn. Think about adding a little guide on how to use the product at the end of the order confirmation email, and your customers would really appreciate it.

Final tips

Order confirmation emails are a gold mine waiting for eCommerce companies to explore, yet only a handful of marketers are using it to their advantage. With just a few improvements, you can create an order confirmation email automation series that aims for higher engagement and increases the overall revenue on autopilot.

Which strategy are you using for your order confirmation email? Let me know in the comment section, and thank you for reading my guide. Remember that all templates used in this article can be found at AVADA Email Marketing app!

Sam Nguyen is the CEO and founder of Avada Commerce, an e-commerce solution provider headquartered in Singapore. He is an expert on the Shopify e-commerce platform for online stores and retail point-of-sale systems. Sam loves talking about e-commerce and he aims to help over a million online businesses grow and thrive.