Email design top tips

Exceptional customer service is the foundation of what hoteliers do, and the majority do it very well. Maintaining customer service at that level across all mediums of communication, however, is a slightly different matter.

The following best practices, shared by our team of Email Specialists, will guide you through how best to achieve the highest level of customer satisfaction through your email communications:


The Guestfolio email design is responsive to screen type and size. What this means is that the email adapts to be optimized for whatever screen it is opened on, be that a mobile phone, tablet, laptop or desktop. This is why we created Studio, to ensure that your emails will always be responsive and make for a pleasant viewing experience.

Here is an example of how emails should look on an iPhone 6 and again open on a desktop. The differences are subtle, but vital for enhancing the guest viewing experience and drawing the eye to the right places.



An effective email is clutter free and clear of purpose. Write in the tone that matches your branding, but keeps the wording short and to the point.

Keep images to a minimum. One photo at the top of the email along with your logo is great for branding – it helps the guest see immediately who the email is from, and makes the email look pretty too! There can be too much of a good thing, though, and multiple images distract the eye from the focus of the email – the call to action button.

We recommend that the call to action button be prominently placed near the top of the email, under a short introductory paragraph. If more wording is necessary for the purposes of your particular email, we recommend you place it underneath your call to action so this can’t be missed.



21st Century guests don’t want to see generic emails in their inbox at any point. At every step throughout the travel journey, guests want to see that the hotel cares enough about their experience to personalize the communications they’re sending their way.

In it’s simplest form, this means to make that email relevant to them. Use their guest name, dates of stay, group size and so on.

More advance personalizations are also recommended to really tailor information to your guests’ needs. Here are a few examples:

  • Send a prompt to anyone who hasn’t made any requests prior to arrival, e.g. ‘Don’t miss out, book your dining before you arrive!’
  • Remind those who haven’t completed their survey that there’s still time to do so e.g. ‘We miss you already! Please share your feedback so we can make your stay even more enjoyable next time!’
  • Invite guests back after they leave, for example, use our newsletter tool to offer those who stayed with families the ‘Latest kid-friendly activities happening this summer!’
  • This type of personalization is a great way to keep the information sent to your guests personal, relevant and out of the spam inbox!


At Cendyn, we recognize the importance of keeping in touch with your guest at regular checkpoints. There’s a fine line somewhere between being neglectful and being a nag, and we like to think we have the formula to tread that line just right.

Our recommended path of communication is as follows:

  • Confirmation email: On booking
  • Modification or cancellation notification: Real-time notifications
  • Pre-arrival email: 5-7 days before arrival, including a reminder to make requests for their stay
  • Room upgrade offer: 3 days before arrival
  • Check-in email: 1 day before arrival – request the guest’s arrival time so you can prepare for their check-in
  • Thank you & survey email: 2 days after check-out, contains a link to the guest survey and TripAdvisor
  • BringBack email: 5 months after check-out inviting the guest to book again

These are our guidelines, but we know that all properties are different and we trust you to know your guests. If you want help getting to know them better, reach out to one of our specialists.


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