Email Engagement

Top 3 Email Design Trends to Watch in 2024

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We’ve seen a lot of changes in the email marketing landscape over the past year, and we’re definitely seeing more as 2024 progresses.

With new regulations from mailbox providers in place for DKIM, SPF, and DMARC, as well as stricter complaint rate tracking, list-unsubscribe requirements, and auto-deletion of inactive accounts, there’s a lot to keep track of.

The one thing that should still be at the top of any email marketer’s to-do list? Boosting subscriber engagement. The best way increase engagement and decrease complaints is by sending emails people want and making them clean, personal, and visually compelling.

We are long past the days of endlessly scrolling through long emails and trying to find the CTA button within a chaotic design. Your authentication has improved, you have your list-unsubscribe header in place, and you’re keeping your lists clean—now it’s time to focus on making your email designs do more of the heavy lifting.


One place to start is with email accessibility. Over a billion people worldwide live with some form of visual impairment, and chances are that a solid portion of your audience falls into this category. Some common vision impairments can include distance vision impairment, cataracts, blindness, color blindness, and refractive errors.

Here are a few elements of your design to focus on so everyone can enjoy your emails:


Always include descriptive alt-text with your images. Instead of simply using the graphic’s file name, which might be something like “Final_V2_edit_FinalFinal.jpg,” use something that explains what the image is, such as “20 percent off sale image featuring new sandals.” This will not only help subscribers who have images turned off in their emails, but also people with vision impairments who rely on voice assistants to read their screens

Font size

You know that many people read email exclusively on their phones, right? Teeny-tiny text that is non-responsive, such as image text that looks great on a desktop but is illegible on mobile, just won’t cut it in 2024.

It’s asking a lot of your audience to enlarge your email to try to figure out what the small print says. A good standard font size to start with is 14px. However, if you know you have an older audience, cater to them by making the font larger. And as fun as script fonts can be, if they require any extra effort to figure out what your email says, your subscribers will quickly lose interest.


Colorblindness affects about 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women. That is a huge percentage of the population.

Catering to this audience segment goes beyond just promising not to put green text on a red background.

Tools such as Validity Everest’s Design and Content module will let you test renderings for various mailbox providers and devices, as well as testing for colorblindness.

See this email example about Validity’s February State of Email Live webinar. The image on the left shows how the email would render on a regular iPad. The image on the right shows how the email would appear for colorblind subscribers.

Bold minimalism

While accessiblity is more than just a trend, designers who take it into consideration have been leaning more toward design trends such as bold minimalism. This trend features bolder colors and the use of white space. The white space makes the designs clean and easy to read. It also encourages clicks to more targeted CTA buttons that feature bold, attention-grabbing colors.

The colors don’t necessarily need to be bright neon shades, just strong, solid colors that are on brand.

An example could be a simple email with a hero image, some plain text, and a branded CTA button, like in the Warby Parker example below.

This email contains good use of white space, uses an inverted pyramid design to draw your eye to the CTA, and has a CTA button in a strong, branded color that stands out amongst the white space.

If you really want to bring out the bold elements even more, get inspired by this St. Patrick’s Day email from Stadium Goods.

White space doesn’t have to literally be white. Stadium Goods showcases good use of that empty “white” space to draw focus to the green shades within the shoes. The “Shop Now” button matches the boldness of the header text to sandwich the design together perfectly.

Dynamic content and AI

We can’t discuss email these days without also bringing up dynamic content and AI. Artificial intelligence is here to stay, so let’s embrace this technology and use it to improve email design and subscriber experience.

Some examples of dynamic content driven by AI can include auto-populating recommendations based on purchase history or browse history, location-based recommendations, segment-based content using zero-party data, back-in-stock notifications, and more.

You can also include interactive content in this list, such as polls, rewards trackers, countdowns, virtual scratch-and-wins, etc.

Find out how this technology can best work for your industry and your audience, and start testing! People want emails to be more personalized, beyond just “Dear First_Name.” Including dynamic content elements is a way to achieve this.

In the example below, Netflix uses a subscriber’s viewing history to send an email with a tailored recommendation that includes a percentage match indicating their compatibility with each suggestion.

The email was short and simple, focusing on one main show and including a small section of newly added shows beneath. Netflix also kept it minimal with a bold CTA in their signature red.

Push the boundaries for email design

A lot goes into email design, and as mentioned before, there are plenty of new developments within the industry that competitive marketers will want to incorporate in their designs.

But at the end of the day, the basic principles of good design remain the same: Our emails need to be revelant and engaging for our subscribers.

To achieve this, emails need to be accessible (so subscribers can see or hear them), modern (with white space, bold CTAs, and a clear goal) and personal (using dynamic content and AI).

When you see a good email that stands out to you, save it, and slowly build a list of design trends you like.

You can do this within your own email inbox, or use Validity MailCharts to search for or create design inspiration lists.

To find other ways to keep your program relevant and up to date this year, make sure to check out our new report, “The State of Email 2024: Keeping Ahead of the Curve.”