by Suzie Blaszkiewicz
Published on 26 February 2016
Despite its seemingly ancient ancestry in the online marketing world, email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to reach an audience, especially if you've chosen the right email templates. According to a recent report from Gartner, the benefits of email marketing are numerous: it's scalable, encourages brand engagement, and most importantly for small businesses, it's cost-effective.
In fact, sometimes it's even free!
There are plenty of email marketing apps out there with freemium plans that let you send a set number of emails to a limited number of contacts on a monthly basis, ideal for growing businesses looking to reach targeted audiences at little to no cost.
In order to be effective, however, you'll need some rockin' email templates to engage your audiences and get them to buy whatever it is that you're selling. Given that 53 percent of emails are opened on a mobile, your templates must be mobile responsive (i.e. designed for viewing on a mobile device).
If you're looking for free email templates but aren't sure how far you can get with a free solution, check out some of the best free email marketing options below. Depending on the number of emails that you want to send or the number of contacts that you want to reach on a monthly basis, you're sure to find a solution that'll give you the best free email templates to create effective and appealing campaigns.
SendinBlue comes with pre-designed templates, as well as a drag and drop designer and an option to create mobile friendly templates. One of its more novel features is integration with social media, so that you can share your campaigns on Twitter or Facebook to get more people to sign up to your newsletter.
Also, depending on how updated your contact lists are, you can go as far as personalizing email subject lines for individual subscribers.
SendinBlue's free plan lets you send a whopping 9,000 emails to an unlimited number of contacts per month.
The king of email marketing, Mailchimp offers both pre-designed templates, as well as a drag and drop editor to create your own designs. Its pre-designed templates allow you to adapt colors to make it more suitable for your branding, while the drag and drop templates guide you to create your own mobile-friendly designs. It also offers guided options for you to code your own templates if you're a bit more of an advanced user. A big bonus is the link checker, which automatically verifies all of the links that you've put in your email campaign.
Its also great for collaboration, where you can set up an admin account and permissions for others in your organization so that they can help with the editing process.
MailChimp's free plan gives you access to 2,000 subscribers and 12,000 emails per month.
FreshMail has tons of fully customizable email templates for lots of different industries, as well as its own editor in the form of the FreshMail Designer. With its drag and drop designer, you can create your own customized campaigns tailored specifically for your company. There are even templates for mass emails like subscription confirmations to further engage your audience.
Notably, if the FreshMail Designer doesn't give you as much flexibility as you need, you can also export email templates to different editors to add an even more personally branded touch, and then import them back into FreshMail to send to subscribers.
FreshMail is free for sending up to 2,000 emails to a maximum of 500 subscribers per month.
Much like the other options mentioned here, MailerLite offers a drag-and-drop newsletter editor so that you can create your own email template, without any HTML knowledge required (although if you do have HTML knowledge and a previous design that you'd like to import, you can do that too). With MailerLite, you can also store and edit an unlimited number of images for your designs, as well as personalize emails for individual subscribers.
Also important: all the email templates that you create with MailerLite are automatically optimized for mobile.
MailerLite's forever free plan lets you send an unlimited number of emails to up to 1,000 clients per month without coughing up any dough.
VerticalResponse includes professionally designed templates that are completely customizable and mobile friendly. With the choice of over 700 customizable templates, you have plenty of options to choose from, as well as the ability to import your own HTML code for even more customizability.
The free plan gives you up to 4,000 emails per month to 1,000 contacts with full access to its customer support.
Mailjet offers a library of free templates to choose from, but its most innovative feature is Passport, its email template creator. Its intuitive function takes drag and drop to a new level, letting you add unique elements from various sources simply and effectively.
Of course, these templates are fully responsive and will adapt to whichever device you're using them on. Bonus: their blog is a great resource for tips on creating effective email marketing campaigns.
Mailjet offers a free monthly plan to send a maximum of 6,000 emails per month to an unlimited number of contacts, although it maxes out at 200 emails per day.
From the popular Zoho suite of products, Zoho Campaigns has got a ton of free templates segmented by type. You can, for example, see templates for business, holidays, sports, or mobile friendly versions, among others. Some of its options are a bit outdated, but if you're looking for simplicity, it could be a good option.
Freemium plan: Zoho Campaigns offers a forever free plan that sends 12,000 emails to up to 2,000 contacts on a monthly basis.
Whether you're a beginner with no HTML knowledge, or are hoping to add a bit more customization to your email campaigns, there are tons of free email template options among the list of freemium email marketing apps that can help you create beautiful campaigns at no cost.
If you're willing to spend a bit of money and want even more options, check out our list of the top 25 email marketing apps.