61 Best Sales Email Subject Lines to Improve Your Open Rates in 2023

61 Best Sales Email Subject Lines to Improve Your Open Rates in 2023

You’re sending emails left and right, but your open rates are low. Could your sales email subject lines be the culprit?

When writing sales emails, the subject line is the first thing your recipient will see. This is arguably the most important part of your email, since that first glance will determine whether they open your message or not.

Thousands of B2B sales teams around the world have used Close to send millions of prospecting emails—now, we’re going to show you what we’ve learned about the best email subject lines, plus introduce you to our mega list of 61 sales email subject lines that you can swipe today.

Want to get the most out of these subject lines? Don’t forget to grab our top cold email templates to go along with them.

What Makes for Sales Email Subject Lines with High Open Rates?

High-performing sales email subject lines all have certain factors in common. These include:

  • A highly relevant pitch: The subject line should be focused on the prospect, not on you or your company. Then it will flow naturally into the sales pitch in your email by showing the value for the prospect.
  • Short and to the point: Don’t beat around the bush or use clickbait subject lines that don’t follow through on their promises. Short subject lines are always better, especially because they’re more visible on mobile devices.
  • Personalization: Using the prospect’s name, their company name, or an idea that’s personalized to the industry or type of prospect can catch the attention faster.
  • An interesting hook: Subject lines are the bait, and if you want them to bite, you’ll have to capture your prospect’s attention. Think: would I open this email if it arrived in my inbox?
  • Authentic sense of urgency: Because fake urgency is so 2010. If your subject line tells prospects that this is time-sensitive, your email copy better give a damn good reason for saying so.

61 Best Sales Email Subject Lines Examples (by Industry & Type of Email)

Based on what industry you’re in, your target audience will be different, and the types of sales subject lines you use will vary as well.

Need some guidance? Have a look at these catchy email subject lines for every kind of sales email (including follow up email subject lines 🙌) you might be sending out and tweak them to suit your specific needs.

B2B Sales Email Subject Lines

1. [Your company] x [prospect’s company]

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

2. Looking to outsource [service you can provide]?

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

3. First steps to improving your [issue you're helping with]

Type of Email: Inbound Email Campaign

4. Time to chat?

Type of Email: Sales Appointment Request Email

5. Would love to work with you again.

Type of Email: Post-Transaction Follow Up Email

Startup Sales Email Subject Lines

6. You know you're running a startup when...

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

7. Could your startup use some help with [common issue]?

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

8. Jam-packed schedule? Let us help you out.

Type of Email: Follow Up Email

Small Business Sales Email Subject Lines (SMBs)

9. We'd love to help you grow your business!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

10. From one small business to another…

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

11. We can help!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

12. Hi, we're [company name]. Nice to meet you!

Type of Email: Introduction Email

13. Free [day of the week] at 1:45?

Type of Email: Sales Appointment Request Email

SaaS & Software Sales Email Subject Lines

14. Looking to improve your software sales?

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

15. X ways our software can improve your life

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

16. Last chance to snag this deal!

Type of Email: FOMO Follow Up Email (Fear of Missing Out)

17. Getting started with [product/service]

Type of Email: Welcome Email for Trial Signups

18. [Referral name] suggested we reach out!

Type of Email: Referral Sales Email

19. Have you thought about [topic/product/service]?

Type of Email: Follow Up Email

20. The next steps

Type of Email: Follow Up Email

21. We'd love your feedback

Type of Email: Post-Transaction Follow Up Email

Enterprise Sales Email Subject Lines

Type of Email: Follow Up Email

23. New [department] strategy for [company name]

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

24. Large companies need [your service/product] too!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

25. Thank you for our [date] meeting

Type of Email: Post-Meeting Follow Up Email

26. It's been a pleasure!

Type of Email: Post-Transaction Follow Up Email

IT & Tech Sales Email Subject Lines

27. A must-have update for [their company]

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

28. Your site needs this

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

29. Could this go viral?

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

30. Ding! You don't want to miss this notification

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

31. Here's the information you requested

Type of Email: Inbound Lead Follow Up

Cloud Sales Email Subject Lines

32. Are your employees' heads in the clouds? We can help.

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

33. We'll help you ditch external hard drives

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

PaaS Sales Email Subject Lines

34. X benefits we can bring to your platform

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

35. We can help you build the app of your dreams!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

IaaS Sales Email Subject Lines

36. Improve your services with this tool

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

37. Let us do the groundwork for you!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

IoT Sales Email Subject Lines

38. Let's turn your ideas into reality

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

39. We can "smarten up" your home!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

40. Want to be #1 on the app store? Let us help!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

41. Get better app reviews with this one awesome tool

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

42. The best thing you'll download today

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

Real Estate Sales Email Subject Lines

43. Sell more properties with help from [your company]

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

44. There's a smarter way to sell real estate…

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

45. Could you use one of these?

Type of Email: Prospecting Email

Advertising Sales Email Subject Lines

46. This deal deserves a billboard

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

47. 3 ways to make your next commercial a hit

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

48. Want to get more clicks on your Facebook ads?

Type of Email: Prospecting Email

49. It's been great doing business with you!

Type of Email: Post-Sales Follow Up Email

Digital Media Sales Email Subject Lines

50. X ideas for your next blog post

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

51. All content creators need this tool

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

Food Service Email Subject Lines

52. Bring in the foodies with [your company]

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

53. We have a delicious deal for you

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

54. Grab a bite of this!

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

Insurance Sales Email Subject Lines

55. Check out our claims & we'll help you with yours

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

56. Risk Management: preparation is not having to gamble

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

57. Still interested in [plan they were interested in]?

Type of Email: Follow Up Email

Financial Services Email Subject Lines

58. Investment opportunity too good to pass up

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

59. Need help with financial planning?

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

60. X steps to achieve [goal they might have]

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

61. X ways we can help you achieve financial freedom

Type of Email: Cold Outreach Sales Email

10 Tips for Writing Effective Sales Email Subject Lines

Ready to make a good first impression? Here are our top tips to create a compelling subject line:

1. Be Honest in Your Subject Lines

Be Honest with Sales Email Subject Lines

You don’t want your subject line to sound too much like you’re trying to expedite a sale. You also don’t want to use clickbait just to get a higher open rate, since it won’t help your sales.

Craft your subject line in a way that you would in a ‘real’ email, as you would to a friend or coworker. Communicate like a real human—not a salesy email marketing expert trying to make some quick sales.

Most importantly, make sure the body of the email lives up to what you promise in the subject line.

Good Example: Hey! Our [product/service] has your name all over it

Bad Example: Get 5M views by TOMORROW with our new product!

2. Keep it Short

Many people only check emails on their mobile devices, so keeping your subject lines short and sweet is imperative. If they’re too long, they may overflow on to a second line, or worse—get cut off. Based on analysis by Leadium of over 40,000 sales emails, short subject lines with 4 words or fewer seem to perform best. Try keeping them short and to-the-point and see how it goes.

Good Example: CRM with predictive dialer

Bad Example: Wasting too much time manually calling your sales leads? We’ve all been there! Our CRM with a built-in predictive dialer will help you!

3. Always Personalize

When you see a subject line that addresses you personally, or seems catered specifically to you, you’re more likely to want to open and read the email. A personalized subject line is far more effective than a ‘universal’ one sent to everybody on your email list.

Good Example: How happy are you with [company name]’s project management tool?

Bad Example: We can offer you [product/service]

4. Use Their Name + a Cliffhanger

This 2016 paper by Stanford showed that including a prospect's name in the subject line increased open rates by 20 percent on average. The more you personalize your cold email subject lines, the better. And if you pique their curiosity with a little cliffhanger, they'll be more likely to open the email. (A tiny bit of FOMO is fine if you keep it light.)

Good Examples:

  • Steli, you in?
  • Steli, quick question about your book
  • Steli, open to this?
  • Steli, your thoughts?
  • Steli, crazy idea?
  • Steli, you dig this?

Bad Example: Steli, webdesign services 20% discounted

5. Stay Relevant

Think about why this person needs your product or service. How does this sales email pertain to them? Also, keep it relevant to the body of the email. Putting unrelated text in the subject line may spark interest for some, but it could also make your email look “spammy.”

Good Example: Declining email deliverability rates with your current marketing automation solution

Bad Example: This could be a game changer for your marketing efforts!

Sales Email Subject Lines Examples

6. Be Genuine

You should make it a goal to have the recipient of your email feel like you genuinely want to help them by providing this product or service to them. Maybe that means giving them a compliment, or commenting on an event you both attended. The best sales emails build a genuine connection rather than trying to close the sale as quickly as possible. Don't resort to limited time offers unless you're doing very high-volume, low-value transactional sales, as is typically the case in eCommerce.

Good Example: It was nice seeing you at [event you both attended], [name]!

Bad Example: Let’s get down to business. Are you interested in [product/service] or not?

Pro Tip: If you have plenty of prospective customers but are short on time, you can automate this kind of personalization and still be authentic. In Close, you can use Custom Fields to save details like conference names and dynamically include them in the subject lines of your Email Templates.

WATCH OUR ON-DEMAND DEMO TO SEE HOW IT WORKS →

7. Match Their Tone (Casual vs Formal)

If the recipient’s first impression of your email feels cold and too business-like, they might see it and think, “Ugh, no thanks.” Don't sound like the stereotypical email marketing send, and don't be overly formal. Something a little more casual can be more appealing, and make your email feel more approachable.

Some sales teams are seeing great results using emojis in subject lines, but test if that is true for your target audience as well. You don’t want to be too casual, though. The simplest one here, and one that still performs decently sometimes is the classic "quick question" subject line.

Good Example: Can we chat about [their company/your products/services/etc.]?

Bad Example: What’s up, [name]? Hit me up if you’re interested in [product/service]

8. Ask a Question in Your Email Subject Line

Questions can spark interest and encourage someone to open an email, and they're one of the most powerful tools to move a prospect along the sales process. Whether you’re aiming to make them feel useful by asking for information, or making them consider their own needs and wants, sales questions are the key.

Good Example: What does [department] need at [their company]?

Bad Example: This is what you need: our [product/service]

9. Deliver on Your Promise

Whatever your subject line promises, make sure the body of your email lives up to that. Whether you promise to make their life easier, give them a good deal—or whatever else it may be—you need to follow through.

Deliver on Your Subject Line Promise

Once you start getting creative with subject lines, it’s easy to get tempted to go too far. Certain subject lines might get you amazing open rates, but you need to look at more than just this one metric. Instead, consider the overall funnel.

Here’s a real-world example: I got an email with the subject line: “Steli, I’m disappointed.” I immediately clicked on that email, and then, it went on, basically saying: “I’m disappointed that we weren’t able to connect,” and diving straight into a sales pitch.

This may have been the first email I opened in my inbox that day, but I quickly deleted it and never responded.

Good example: I have a follow-up offer that you will want to consider.

Bad example: [First name], I’m disappointed

10. Use a Mobile-Friendly Sales Email Tool (Like Close CRM)

In 2018, 49.3 percent of all marketing emails were opened on a mobile device, and it's safe to say that this number is even higher now.

Make sure that your subject lines are optimized for mobile devices too. One of the best ways to do this is to use an email tool for salespeople that delivers mobile-friendly emails, like Close!

With Close, you can create and share email templates with custom template tags. When linking your email account, you’ll have the whole history of your conversation with each prospect, and be able to respond with the right information right at hand.

email subject line example of mobile friendly tool

TRY CLOSE FOR FREE →

Bonus: Try These Advanced Sales Email Subject Line Hacks and Experiment More Today

Want to up your game even more? You’re ready to experiment with these advanced sales email tips and see what gives you the most success:

Intentional Misspellings

We know, this one sounds pretty weird. However, a tiny intentional spelling mistake can make your email come across as more human.

A small mistake such as hitting the key beside the letter you would normally put in that word won’t make it seem like you don’t actually know how to spell the word, but rather that you may have typed and sent it in a hurry. This can create a sense of urgency and may actually entice the recipient to open your email more than if everything was spelled correctly.

Mention a Mutual Connection by Name

No, we’re not suggesting you create some sort of children’s art project—we’re talking about capitalizing on shared connections. If you have a mutual acquaintance or attended the same event, these connections may be able to help you secure a new client. Referrals are gold when it comes to cold email subject lines, so consider mentioning a referral by name.

Test Your Email Deliverability

Ensure you’re not using any words that may trigger spam filters. Including words and phrases such as “bonus,” “click here,” and “winner” may send your emails straight to the spam folder. You should also run a test on your DNS records to make sure there aren’t any issues.

Research Your Email Recipient

A good email subject line is appropriately adjusted to the tone of your email based on the type of people you’re sending it to. If you’re sending an email to CEOs of large companies, your tone should be different than if you’re emailing free-spirited small business owners (and if you're a SMB owner yourself, be sure you're using one of these top CRMs for small businesses).

Research Before Writing Your Sales Email Subject Line

One way to use a B2B data provider to do research on your prospects, their company, and their industry before reaching out. Or, you can use social media sites like LinkedIn to learn about current events or what’s on the mind of your prospects.

Only Use Their Company Name (Try Ditching the Personalization)

Instead of addressing your recipients by their first name, experiment with only including their company name. Or, if you’re feeling really wild, try A/B testing no personal or customized variables at all.

Use Lowercase Text in Your Sales Email Subject Line

When sending an email to someone you know, you likely wouldn’t capitalize every word in your subject line. Only using capital letters where necessary can make you come across as more human and genuine.

Be Creative and Funny

Making use of your wit and sense of humor is a great way to create catchy email subject lines for sales. People may be intrigued if you use a pun or set up a joke, and it’s a unique way to make your emails stand out. We’d recommend giving this a shot.

Try a Subject Line-Only Sales Email

Send out emails with only a subject line and no email body text. Using EOM at the end of your subject line also works well. I know a sales team that’s killing it with this technique.

Just make sure there’s a clear call to action inside that subject line, so your prospect knows what to do next.

Address Their Pain Points in the Subject Line

Getting straight to the (pain) point in your email subject line is often very effective. If you can make a pretty educated guess about one major professional problem they're dealing with, it's worth using it in your subject line. Some examples of pain point subject lines are:

  • Marketing attribution mess?
  • International payroll legislation quagmire? This could help
  • The "find good freelancers" struggle is real (unless you do this)
  • WFH team management :/
  • Low CRM adoption?
  • Declining email open rates
  • Social media still working for you?
  • Is your email list becoming less engaged, too?
  • Disengaged subscribers?
  • Email unsubscribes going up?  

The more you're able to speak the lingo they use when communicating with their coworkers, the more you'll see higher open rates. Sometimes instead of using visual emojis try using typed emoticons. You'll best be able to do this when you talk with sales reps, marketers, support, and customer success agents.

Sales Email Subject Lines

How to Run Sales Email Subject Line Experiments (and Make Data-Informed Decisions)

Have you been paying close attention to the performance of your sales emails? You might not have even thought to run experiments with your email tactics, but it can be a great way to improve your results. Here are some tips and advice for the best practices when setting up subject line experiments:

  • Decide what you want to test: How are you going to measure what’s working and what isn’t? You might want to look at your open and response rates for starters. These metrics, and many others, are covered by our email sequences reporting in Close.
  • Have an idea of what metrics you’re aiming for: It’s important to set quantifiable goals when it comes to these tests. If you’re not seeing the results you want, it’s time to try something different.
  • Pick how many variations you want to try out: What types of subject lines do you think will work best? Select a few types and decide how long you want to test them before having a look at the results of your A/B test.
  • Don’t get caught up in your success: What’s working now won’t work forever. Always challenge your current techniques, because the time between realizing you’re losing leads and finding a new template that works could last months. Don’t stop experimenting altogether just because you’ve found one thing that works.
  • Follow up with recipients: To get more information about your target audience, consider reaching out to those that opened or responded to your emails to get their feedback. Ask what made them want to open your email, what they liked about it, and what they didn’t like. This qualitative data can be used to your advantage when writing future emails.

Following these guidelines, run some experiments to see what types of subject lines seem to resonate well with your target audience and generate the most engagement.

To take it to the next level, learn how to run cold email experiments when you’re emailing smaller sets of leads and don’t have enough data to achieve statistically significant results.

Keep in mind that if you wouldn’t open an email with the subject line you’re using, your leads probably won’t either. Entice your prospects with great subject lines for sales emails that are short, relevant, to-the-point, and sometimes funny, and you’ll be improving your cold email response rate with new customers in no time.

If you're looking for a quick and easy way to create personalized cold emails, check out our cold email generator.

Want more tips? Get your copy of Cold Email Hacks: