How To Create An Email Newsletter in 4 EASY Steps

Do you know how to create an email newsletter that will keep your subscribers informed, engaged, and turn them into loyal customers?

In this massive guide, we’re going to show you how to create an email newsletter in just 3 steps. Plus, you’ll get tips on how to get even more subscribers, how to make money from your list, and how to keep your emails from ending up in spam.

To help you navigate to the sections that you need the most help with, we’ve created the following table of contents:

Otherwise, let’s start at the basics:

What Is an Email Newsletter?

An email newsletter is a type of email that contains valuable content (product news, announcements, blog posts, tips, and other resources) to a subscriber list.

The list includes existing customers or leads that have signed up (opted-in) and have agreed to receive marketing communications from a company or individual.

But more than anything else, you need to know why email newsletters are so important for growing your business.

Email newsletters make it easier for brands to nurture leads by marking themselves as thought leaders or key players in their industry.

These brands share market knowledge and insights, as well as highlight new products and special offers that drive traffic to their website to promote their products and services, promote events, get feedback, and so much more.

Using email newsletters is also a powerful way to control your message.

You are informing users directly about your brand’s news, so you have complete control over when and how it’s presented.

Finally, you can use email newsletters to generate more conversions.

Skeptical? Check it out.

A newsletter raises awareness of your brand and the products and services you offer and can increase positive public perception of you.

These things often lead to more conversions. And, more conversions lead to increased revenue.

You can see this directly reflected in the first two months of Woodside Community‘s time with OptinMonster when they jumped from 46 leads to 116 leads. That increase of 70 leads generated $294,435 in sales!

Woodside Communities helped prospects plan a visit using OptinMonster

Get started with OptinMonster today and create your own success story!

Let’s turn our attention to who should be using email newsletters in their marketing strategy.

Who Needs an Email Newsletter?

Staying in touch with subscribers is so important to keep you on their mind. And when your subscribers are thinking about you, you have a much better chance of converting them into customers.

But that doesn’t mean that you should only send newsletters if you’re in a certain industry. Email newsletters are a great tool for creating and nurturing a personal relationship with users no matter your industry, business, or website traffic.

And, when your communications match your branding, it increases awareness of you and your products.

You can also segment your email list to create targeted newsletter campaigns with messaging that is specifically tailored to a smaller portion of your overall customer base.

Now you know what email newsletters are, why they matter, and whether or not they make sense for your business.

Let’s switch gears and look at the different types of email newsletters to help you better understand how to create one for your company.

5 Types of Email Newsletters

1. Email Newsletters for eCommerce Websites

Email newsletters are a great way to drive sales by showcasing featured products or using coupons to entice subscribers to make a purchase.

In your newsletter, why not include a coupon with a bold header mentioning the discount? You could even add an option that subscribers can simply click to automatically apply the discount to their cart. Subscribers love it when things are easy.

apply coupon instantly email newsletter lead magnet

And, eCommerce emails convert. A recent study found that 59% of consumers say email marketing emails influence their purchasing decisions. Make sure those emails are yours. ?

Want to get even more out of your email marketing? If you run an online store, email marketing is hands down the most effective tool for recovering abandoned carts and converting so-called “lost” sales into revenue.

2. Email Newsletters for Publishers (Bloggers, News Sites)

Publishers can use email newsletters to connect with customers by providing helpful tips and information related to their niche.

optinmonster email newsletter example

If you need to start a blog or other content-driven type of site (and, trust us, your business will thank you for it), email marketing is the best way to build your audience.

While having content on your site will do a lot to improve your site’s search rankings, making it easier for new visitors to find your site, there are 3 awesome ways content and email marketing can work together to create a strong following:

  1. Your content gives you a built-in reason to reach out to previous visitors and customers, encouraging them to come back to your site.
  2. You build a loyal audience that looks to you as an authority in your industry.
  3. Your content and its presentation are controlled and owned by you.

3. Email Newsletters for Small Businesses

Email newsletters are also a really good way to boost your social following or traffic to your site, so don’t forget to add links and callouts!

digital marketer uses a call to action that drives new subscribers to their social media in their email newsletter

With a 4400% ROI, email marketing is also the most cost-effective marketing channel, making it the perfect way for small businesses to stretch their marketing dollars.

4. Email Newsletters for Nonprofits

Nonprofit newsletters help you to connect with their subscribers, really engaging with people and inspiring them to take action. Similar to small businesses, nonprofits need to take advantage of email marketing’s high ROI to make their marketing dollars go a long way.

Exit Intent Optins help recover abandoning visitors

Email marketing makes a huge difference for donations. In fact, 28% of nonprofit donations in 2018 were attributed to email communications.

And, it makes a difference in the amount of the donation, too. While social media brings in more donations overall, they tend to be smaller dollar amounts. Email, on the other hand, brought in 33% of donations greater than $1,001.

Looking for more ways to increase donations? Check out these 7 tips to boost your donations with OptinMonster.

5. Email Newsletters for Education

Educational institutions need to reach out to many different audiences for many different reasons. Since email lists can be easily segmented, this makes email marketing a perfect fit!

Singularity University increases pageviews using OptinMonster.

Depending on the target audience, email newsletters can be customized to reach parents, students, faculty, or other audiences for fundraising, events, announcements, or other activities.

We just covered 5 examples of how email newsletters can benefit a variety of industries, but there are more newsletter examples out there. You can probably see why 40% of B2B marketers say email newsletters are most critical to their company’s content marketing success.

Now that you know just how important email newsletters are, let’s jump into creating one!

How to Create an Email Newsletter

In this section, we’re going to take you through how to create an email newsletter, step by step. Don’t worry, it’s only 4 steps and they’re pretty easy.

You can jump to whichever section interests you most:

We’ll start by building an email list, move into choosing an email service provider, then set up and send our newsletter.

Step 1. Building an Email List Using OptinMonster

Did you know that on average, 80% of your website visitors will leave your site for good, without signing up for your email newsletter?

Of course, the best way to build a targeted email list is to convert your website visitors into subscribers.

It just makes sense that the most successful email marketing campaigns would start off with a list full of qualified leads interested in what you have to offer, right?

So, what’s an online marketer just starting out to do? That’s where OptinMonster comes in to save the day:

optinmonster homepage as the first step on how to create an email newsletter

OptinMonster is the world’s #1 lead generation software. That means we’re the best at growing your email list through are highly-targeted optin campaigns, like:

  • Popups
  • Floating bars
  • Fullscreen welcome mats
  • Slide-in scroll boxes
  • Content lockers

And many more.

One of our most popular optin campaigns uses exit-intent popups to convert your abandoning visitors into subscribers and customers.

Exit-intent popups detect user behavior to prompt visitors with a targeted campaign at the precise moment they’re about to leave your site forever, skyrocketing your conversions.

Want proof? Just look at these case studies from OptinMonster customers:

Plus, you can check out this quick video tutorial to learn just how easy it is to get started with OptinMonster:

OptinMonster works with all website platforms including WordPress, Shopify, and BigCommerce. You can even integrate campaigns on HTML sites.

Plus, all signup forms and lead generation campaigns are mobile responsive and GDPR compliant.

You can track campaign performance using the built-in analytics and metrics tool or by connecting it to Google Analytics. So you can see how well your campaigns perform, conversions, and click-through rates, so you’ll know where to focus your time and effort.

Ready to get started? Click below to sign up for your risk-free OptinMonster account today:

Grow Your Email List Today
BONUS: Done-For-You Campaign Setup ($297 value) Our conversion experts will design 1 free campaign for you to get maximum results – absolutely FREE! Click here to get started →

Step 2. Choosing the Right Email Service Provider

Now that you know how to create a killer optin to collect email addresses and build your list, it’s time to choose an email service provider. Here’s what to look for:

  • List Management: Your email service provider needs to make it easy to manage your contact list, segment lists, rearrange groups, and send and track customized messages.
  • Easy-to-Use Editor: Any email marketing service provider you choose should be easy to use and integrate well with your lead generation tools. You don’t want to spend hours and hours fussing with a builder.
  • In-depth Reporting: Choose an email marketing platform that lets you use a data-driven approach to email marketing so you can access the strengths and weaknesses of your campaigns and adjust accordingly.

Here are some of our favorite email service providers that you can start using today:

1. Constant Contact

create an email newsletter tool - constant contact

Constant Contact offers an easy-to-use, lightweight interface and is great for both big and small businesses. And, as one of the largest email marketing services in the world, Constant Contact is able to offer great deliverability rates and highly rated support with every plan.

You can use their drag and drop editor and email newsletter templates to create and send professional emails. You can even send automated emails to new subscribers.

The emails are responsive so they look great on mobile devices and desktops.

Constant Contact is always our favorite because it’s the most beginner-friendly and the easiest to use, but it doesn’t skimp on the features.

With Constant Contact, you get an email marketing platform that’s easy to use and includes powerful marketing tools like a free image library, Facebook ads integration, eCommerce integration for Shopify stores, built-in social media sharing tools, and list segmentation.

Oh, and an enormous library full of training tools.

2. Sendinblue

use sendinblue to create an email newsletter

Sendinblue is a powerful email marketing tool with minimal startup costs that gives free users an unlimited number of contacts. It features awesome things like automation workflows and autoresponder campaigns, segmentation tools, and A/B testing tools.

Sendinblue also includes in-depth reporting and real-time stats so you know how your campaigns are doing.

You can create email newsletters that are stunning and optimized to look great on every device.

3. Drip

drip email service provider homepage

Drip is another excellent email service provider that you can choose from.

You can keep your contact list stored with Drip and create email campaigns. When new users sign up, they can be tagged, segmented, and fit into an automated email series.

Over time, you can refine your email marketing strategy and put everything on autopilot. As new leads come in, they’ll get new emails that nurture the relationship until they become customers.

Once you’ve selected your email service provider, you’re ready to create your first newsletter.

Step 3. Sending Your First Email Newsletter

We’re going to show you how to send your first email newsletter using Constant Contact. If you don’t already have an account, you’ll need to sign up.

Once on the landing page, enter your email address and click Start Your Free Trial.

sign up for constant contact to send your first email newsletter

Fill out the information required to start your free trial (no credit card info needed) and click Get Started.

complete new account details

On the next page, you can just click Skip This Step because you don’t need to go through the guided setup, you have us!

skip guided setup to send your email newsletter faster

You’ll end up at the Constant Contact dashboard, which is where you manage your email lists and subscribers and send your email newsletters.

constant contact dashboard

To keep your contacts organized, you’ll want to add email lists to your Constant Contact account.

To see the lists currently available in your account, click on Contacts in the top menu, then Email Lists on the side menu.

constant contacts email lists

If you just created a new Constant Contact account, you’ll only have the default General Interest list that Constant Contact starts you out with. To add a new list, click Enter a New List, give it a name, and click Add List.

The screen will refresh and you’ll see your new list, highlighted in yellow:

newly created constant contact list

Step 4: Adding an Integration to OptinMonster

Now you can use this list in your OptinMonster integration to have new leads added automatically.

Adding Constant Contact to OptinMonster is super easy. From your OptinMonster dashboard, select the campaign that you created in Step 1, above.

Go to Integrations » Add New Integration then choose Constant Contact from the dropdown.

add an integration to your email newsletter optin

Choose Add New Account from the Email Provider Account dropdown, then click the Register with Constant Contact button:

register with constant contact

Log in to Constant Contact and click the Allow button. Then, add an account label and click Connect to Constant Contact.

add your constant contact account label

OptinMonster will pull the email lists you have available from your Constant Contact account. Choose the email list you want to use for this optin.

choose email list

Save your optin and you’re good to go. Now, any leads that sign up through this popup will be automatically added to the list that you selected.

To create our email newsletter in Constant Contact we’ll click on Campaigns on the top menu bar. From there, you’ll be able to see all of the email campaigns you’ve created.

To create a new one, just click Create. Straightforward enough, right?

We’ll be creating an Email.

create a newsletter with constant contact

Next, choose a template. There are a ton of them with great calls to action (CTAs), but don’t get overwhelmed with all of the email newsletter designs. Start with something simple and customize it.

select a template to create an email newsletter with constant contact

Click on a template to select it and begin creating your email newsletter. We’re going with the Basic Newsletter template, but you could also just opt for a plain text email.

constant contact basic email newsletter template

Using this template, you can just point and click to edit, replacing the default newsletter content with your own.

Adding new content is as easy as dragging the elements you want from the left column over onto the email template. It’s just like designing your OptinMonster popup!

Once you’re happy with your email, click Continue to choose your recipients and when to send your email.

constant contacts recipients and scheduling for your email newsletter

As you can see, creating a newsletter in Constant Contact is super easy.

We recommend that you send your newsletters on a consistent schedule. You want your subscribers to come to expect to hear from you and look forward to it.

We have an excellent post that will help you choose the best time to send newsletter emails.

Ultimately, though, the best time to send your emails comes down to your audience, so pay attention to your open rates and do some split testing to see what works best.

How to Make Money from Your Email Newsletter

In addition to delivering information to your subscribers and driving visitors to your site, you can use your email newsletter to make money in other ways. Here are a couple of our favorites.

  • Sell, Upsell, and Cross-Sell Your Products and Services: Even if shoppers don’t take the upsell when they purchase, you can offer it again by email. And, now that you know it’s going to take a little more to make the sale, you can sweeten the deal by offering a discount.
  • Use Affiliate Marketing and Referral Marketing: Recommend products or services to your audience, they purchase the products, and you get a commission from the sales.

Interested in learning about affiliate marketing? Check out this helpful resource: How to Make Money While You Sleep with Affiliate Marketing.

But before you can make money from email marketing, you need to make sure you make it into your audience’s inbox in the first place.

Keep Your Email Newsletters From Going to Spam

There’s nothing worse than spending ages getting your message just perfect only to find out that all of your emails are going to spam. Here’s how to keep that from happening to you:

Get Permission to Send Emails

The #1 rule of email marketing is to get permission to email first. Never, ever, ever buy email addresses. Those people didn’t ask you to email them and they probably don’t want to hear from you.

At best they’re going to simply unsubscribe and go on living their lives. At worst, they’re going to report you as spam.

Keep Your Emails Engaging

If you’re noticing low open rates or read rates, your emails are at a higher risk of being flagged as spam. Fortunately, there are several ways you can combat something like that:

  • Send your emails at the right time
  • Write better subject lines
  • Make your email easy to read
  • Segment your list (or create better segments)
  • Keep your list fresh

Clean Your Email List Regularly

Mailbox providers will look at the ratio of active to inactive email accounts on your mailing list.

What does that mean?

If your mailing list includes a large number of email addresses that appear to be inactive, that’s a red flag to spam filters.

Remember earlier when we talked about email lists and natural decline? Yeah, that’s this.

Every single year your email list is going to decline, so it’s important to clean out your email list every once in a while to remove subscribers who haven’t engaged with your campaigns in a while.

Tips to Get More Email Subscribers

One thing you’ll quickly discover is that you can never have enough leads. Part of that is due to the natural decline email lists suffer each year (a whopping 25%).

Here are some ways you can combat that by getting more people to subscribe to your newsletter.

1. Use Lead Magnets and Content Upgrades to Capture More Subscribers

While SEO can drive traffic to your site, it isn’t enough to get them to sign up. Lead magnets are awesome incentives that marketers offer to potential buyers in exchange for their email address, or other contact information.

They usually offer a piece of content that’s digital, downloadable, like a free PDF checklist, report, eBook, whitepaper, video, etc.

2. Grow Your Email List With Social Media

Facebook has made this easy by introducing call-to-action buttons for business pages:

optinmonster facebook page call-to-action for email newsletter signup

You can also use influencer marketing and user-generated content to grow your list. Check out our Twitter and Instagram articles for tips specific to those platforms.

3. Use Gated Content

Gated content is content on your website that can’t be accessed until the visitor enters their email address. Use OptinMonster’s Content Lock feature to gate your content and get more leads.

optinmonster gated content with obfuscation used to get email newsletter signups

4. Add a Newsletter Optin Checkbox to Your Checkout Page

Add a newsletter optin checkbox to your eCommerce checkout page. If you use WooCommerce, you can use the Newsletter Subscription addon to accomplish this.

There you have it! You just learned how to create an email newsletter. But, again, everything starts with getting high-quality leads to your email list. Click below to start growing your list today!

Grow Your Email List Today
BONUS: Done-For-You Campaign Setup ($297 value): Our conversion experts will design 1 free campaign for you to get maximum results – absolutely FREE! Click here to get started →

We hope you found this in-depth guide on how to create an email newsletter helpful. If so, you may be interested in the following posts:

These tips will have everything you need to take your email newsletters to the next level.

Jacinda Santora
Jacinda Santora is a writer specializing in eCommerce and growth marketing. She prides herself on her ability to make complicated things easier. When she isn't writing you can find her daydreaming about campervans, drinking coffee, and listening to podcasts.


  1. Thomas Griffin July 2, 2019 at 10:00 am

    Thanks for reading this article – I hope you found it helpful.

    I wanted to let you know about our powerful Exit Intent® technology that converts abandoning website visitors into email subscribers and customers. Typically 70% of the people who visit your website will leave and never return, meaning all those marketing efforts to reach them have gone to waste.

    OptinMonster’s Exit Intent® technology detects user behavior and prompts them with a targeted campaign at the precise moment they are about to leave.

    You can unlock this powerful technology 100% free when you purchase our OptinMonster Pro plan.

    Get started with OptinMonster today and see why 1,000,000+ choose OptinMonster to get more subscribers and customers.

    Thomas Griffin
    President of OptinMonster

  2. Floyd Johnson July 7, 2019 at 11:54 pm

    Thanks for sharing these insights…
    I have been stuck on creating my newsletters but after reading this it got my creative juice going and I think I know what is the next step…

    I was stuck on choosing the right email service provider now I have a more clear idea of what to look for in choosing an autoresponder.

    1. Jacinda Santora
      Jacinda Santora July 8, 2019 at 7:11 am

      Glad we could help, Floyd! 🙂

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