Create an Automated Welcome Email

When someone signs up for your email marketing, it’s an opportunity to make a great first impression. Send them a welcome email to introduce yourself, say thank you, or offer a special promotion. In Mailchimp, you can use an automation to make sure each new subscriber receives a welcome email.

In this article, you'll learn how to create a automated welcome email.

Before you start

Here are some things to know before you begin this process.

  • If you’ve never created an automated email before, it may be helpful to review About Automation.
  • The automated welcome email campaign is different from the optional final welcome email in your form builder. To learn more about the final welcome email, check out Enable or Disable the Final Welcome Email.
  • We recommend that you choose to send either a final welcome email or an automated welcome, but not both. If you use both at the same time, be sure to include different content in each email, so you don’t appear to send duplicates.
  • When you publish a signup landing page, we’ll generate an automated welcome email for you to review. This draft includes editable default content, and it’s ready to send to people who join your audience from the landing page. To learn more, check out Promote Your Landing Page.

Create a one-click welcome automation

The default one-click welcome automation is one email that sends immediately after signup, and includes pre-filled content. In the automation builder you can change the delay, and edit the design and content. This automation welcomes new subscribers to your audience, so the trigger and audience are fixed and uneditable. You can pause the automated welcome email at any time. If you need more sending options, check out our advanced workflow.

To create an automated welcome email, follow these steps.

  1. Launch the automation builder.
  2. On the Welcome message tab, enter a campaign name and click the drop-down menu to choose an audience. We’ll send your welcome message to anyone who subscribes to email marketing from this audience.

  3. Click Begin.

  4. Review your automation. We pre-fill the email with default content, so you can start your welcome automation right away.

  5. If everything looks good, click Start Sending.

If you want to edit the draft, follow these steps.

  1. To edit campaign information, click the Edit button in the field you want to edit.
    • Click Edit Delay to change the delivery delay after signup. The default delay is immediately. Other delay options are 1 hour, 6 hours, or 1 day. Click the dropdown menu to set the delay time.
    • Click Edit From to edit the name and email address your contacts will see.
    • Click Edit Subject to edit the subject line and preview text.
  2. When you finish editing a section, click Save before moving to the next section.
  3. In the Content section, click Preview to see what your email will look like to your contacts.
  4. Click X to exit preview mode and return to the checklist.
  5. If you want to edit the design or message, click Edit Design.

  6. On the Design step, design your email. When you’re done, click Save and Continue to return to the checklist.

  7. Click Start Sending.

  8. In the pop-up confirmation box, click Start Now.

Advanced workflow

If you need more sending options, like segmentation or scheduling, or want to add more emails to make it a series, click the Use advanced settings link. After you switch to the advanced editor, you can’t return to the one-click version, but you can start a new one anytime.

To access the advanced workflow, follow these steps.

  1. Click the Use advanced settings link.

  2. On the pop-up modal, click Use advanced settings.

Next, you'll set up and design your welcome email.

Edit email

In the Emails step of the automation builder, you'll design your email's content and review its settings.

Edit the individual email’s trigger, schedule, segment, and post-send action, or add another email to make a welcome series. You can also edit the settings for the overall automation.

To design your automation email, follow these steps.

  1. Click Design Email.
  2. On the Setup step, name your email, then enter the subject line, preview text, from name, and from email address.
    enter the subject line, preview text, from name, and from email address
  3. Click Next.
  4. On the Template step, select your template.
  5. On the Design step, design your email.
    sample design
    If you want to see how your design will look to subscribers, click the Preview and Test drop-down menu to access powerful testing tools. To learn more about these tools, check out Preview and Test Your Email Campaign.
  6. Click Save and Continue to finish up your automation.

Edit workflow settings

Your workflow settings include your automation name, from name, from email address, and tracking options. To access your workflow settings, navigate to the Emails step of the automation builder and click Edit Settings.

Confirm and start

Now that you've designed your campaign and configured your workflow settings, it's time to double check everything and start your automation!

To confirm and start your automation, follow these steps.

  1. Click Next to navigate to the Confirm step.
  2. Review the confirmation checklist and click Resolve or Edit to make any necessary changes to your automation.
    review confirm step
  3. When you're ready, click Start Sending to start sending your automation.
    Cursor hovers over the Start Workflow button.
  4. In the pop-up modal, click Start Sending to confirm.

Great job! Now, anyone who signs up to your email marketing will receive your welcome message. After the data begins to roll in, you can view your automation report to see how it’s performing.

If you want to make any changes to your automation after it’s started, you’ll first need to pause it. To learn more, read Edit an Active Automation.

Test your welcome email

After you start the automation, you may want to test it to see how it looks in your inbox. Test signups for automation can be a little tricky, so be sure to read the whole section. Here’s how it works.

  • Confirm the automation’s sending status.
    On the Campaigns page in your account, you should see a Sending badge next to your automation. This confirms that it’s activated.

  • Try a test signup.
    Navigate to the signup form you use to collect new contacts, and sign up. People can only receive a welcome automation once, so you should use an email address that hasn't received the automation before. If you sign up with an address that’s already been through the automation, you won’t receive it. This is true even if you delete your address and try to sign up again.

  • Tip: Use Gmail to get extra addresses for testing your automation.
    If you don’t have a new address to try with your signup form, that’s OK. Gmail users can create instant disposable email addresses. To do this, add a plus sign and additional numbers or letters to your address to create variations. Here's an example:

Original Gmail AddressVariations

When you join your Mailchimp audience with these address variations, we’ll recognize them as unique subscribers. All welcome emails sent to the new addresses will go to your original inbox.

Next steps

A well-crafted welcome campaign helps you make a good first impression, and lets people know what to expect from your marketing emails. If you want to go beyond the basics, here are a couple of things to try.

Create a welcome series

When you want to give new subscribers a little extra attention or guidance, add more emails to your automation to make it a welcome series. We also offer subscriber activity automations that are specifically designed for onboarding and education.

Edit an Active Automation: Add an Email

Automation Types: Subscriber Activity

Promote Your Products

If you have an online store, try adding a promo code or product recommendations to your welcome message to encourage new subscribers to check out your items right away.

Use Promo Code Content Blocks

Add Product Recommendations to a Campaign

Was this article helpful?

Anything else we can do to improve our site?