89 Surefire Sales Email Subject Lines: Hook Prospects First Time

Sales Email Subject Lines: Hook Prospects First Time

Feel as if you’re firing off thousands of valuable emails to prospects, just to never get a response? Considering 33% of people decide to open an email based on the subject line alone, you may need to find the right sales email subject line to hook them. Prospects are constantly prioritising their time, especially when it comes to their emails. With the average professional receiving around 100 emails daily, you must be serious about getting your foot in the door. Learn how to do exactly that, alongside what makes a compelling email subject line for sales below.

In a rush? Copy and paste one of our 89 best sales email subject lines that will increase your open rates and, hopefully, your responses!

89 Surefire Sales Email Subject Lines

Why Is It Important to Get Email Subject Lines for Sales Right?

If your sales email subject line is weak, uninteresting, or irrelevant to your prospect, they will ignore or delete it before opening. 

Think of your own email inbox; how many emails have you deleted or flagged as spam before reading the message? Chances are, it’s a lot. 

“On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent eighty cents out of your dollar.” 

David Ogilvy, Copywriter

Aside from the obvious fact you want prospects to open your email, the subject line is your prospect’s first impression of you and your offering.

How they respond in that first moment either makes or breaks your chances of connecting with them. And your chance to solve their challenges with your product or service.

But what can you do when the open email rate across most industries is only a somewhat unsurprising 21%?

You first learn what makes a good email subject line for sales: 

What Makes a Good Sales Email Subject Line?

In short, a good sales email subject line accurately reflects your email’s content, grabs the recipient’s attention, and encourages them to open and engage with your message.

They’re also:

Clear and Specific

Your subject line should clearly communicate what your email is about. 

Avoid vague or generic subject lines that don’t indicate what the recipient can expect to find in the email. 

Your subject line should tell them what you are selling, who you are selling to, and what benefits your product can offer them in as little as five seconds.

Relevant to the Prospect

Providing value to your prospect begins with knowing what means the most to them because all every prospect thinks is, what’s in it for me? 

Why should they, or anyone for that fact, open this email? 

That’s why you must be as clear and concise as possible about your value. 


You want your subject line to stand out in your prospect’s inbox and catch their attention. 

To do so, consider using humour, intrigue, or a question to pique their curiosity and encourage them to open the email. 

Interest comes in many forms and depends entirely on what your prospect cares about, so you may need to experiment and test to see what angle works best for you. 

You can pique prospects’ interest by using a topical industry news story, statistic, question or even a plea for help.

Regardless of your chosen angle, it must centre around the prospect (And their problems) rather than your offering.


Shorter subject lines tend to perform better than longer ones. 

Your subject line should be no more than 3-5 words, or at most, 6-10 words.


The content of your email should align with your subject line. 

Don’t use a misleading or clickbaity subject line to get someone to open your email. 

While a ton of glyph emojis, dollar signs, and exclamation marks turn prospects quicker than anything, you must also be careful not to annoy them. 

Or underestimate their knowledge by insinuating things you can’t provide by making false claims. It will only hurt your reputation with the prospect and their company. 

This approach will damage your credibility and make the recipient less likely to respond to your future emails. 


People often review emails they’ve received or opened previously by searching for the keyword that resonated with them most.

Including a keyword in your sales email subject line ensures they can recall your email quickly and easily.

A crucial element of helping prospects to take an action you have requested, whether that’s replying, meeting or clicking a link to buy your product or service.


Considering only 1 in 5 email campaigns is not optimised for mobile devices, it’s fair to say your first chance of contact with your prospect is through their phone. 

This statistic alone is why ensuring your sales email subject line is mobile-friendly is crucial.

Don’t attempt to use any email glyphs that only work via browser or use too many images that fail to load. 

It’s also important to remember that different mobile and tablet devices show varying characters in your subject line.

Overall, the general rule of thumb is to limit them to around 25 characters or one to four words.

Infographic on a checklist for creating engaging sales email subject lines

What Should I Consider When Writing Sales Email Subject Lines?

What am I selling?

Yes, you know what your company is offering – but what is the value to your prospect? Simply having the lure of a new product release or special promotion isn’t enough – prospects want to know what’s in it for them.

Who am I selling to? 

Write your sales email subject line as if you were your prospect, put yourselves in their shoes – what do they need? Why do they need it? What’s stopping them from achieving this?

Are they already familiar with me or my company?

If you’re making a first impression, remember not to make any sales email subject line faux-pas like false claims or worse, assuming they want to connect with you.

Why should they want to open my email?

Your subject line gets the prospect to open the email, but the body is what excites, inspires and moves prospects to take action on your offering. Visualise your subject line as a trailer for the main body of the email; make them want to read the rest.

Would I open, respond or delete an email with this subject line if it appeared in MY inbox?

How many emails do you receive and delete daily? Chances are it’s quite a few – so get back into your prospect’s shoes and think subjectively. Would I open this email? If you’re not interested, why would your prospect be?

Infographic on the 5 questions that you can ask yourself to help you create sales email subject lines that work

8 Top Types of Sales Email Subject Lines

There are many different types of sales email subject lines that have benefits depending on what you’re attempting to achieve by contacting your prospect. Discover them below:


A direct approach is often the best. Breaking the ice by calling out a problem or challenge your prospect currently faces in the subject line will help your email cut through the crowd.

Sales email subject lines that get straight to the point without any frills allow prospects to decide whether this interests them, giving them authority from the start.

For example: [Pain-point] making you [emotion]? I can help.


As humans, our brains are hardwired to notice incompletions, unexpected gaps and missing information. It’s a natural way to pique your prospect’s attention and curiosity.

Be warned; however, you need to fulfil your promise in the body of the email, or you’ll immediately lose them for looking tacky and lacking in integrity.

For example: Congratulations, [Prospect first name]!


It’s hard to ignore a problem, especially when it’s right in front of you. That’s why subject lines revolving around your prospect’s pain points are naturally perfect for standing out in the crowd.

Prospects will always open an email if there’s a possibility you could actually solve their problem – but you have to point it out first.

For example: [Pain point]: There’s a better way 

Scarcity & Urgency

The fear of missing out is a classic motivator, which is why using tactics like limited time and availability motivates people to take action – and quickly.

For example: The clock’s ticking.


When using cold outreach to determine whether your prospective, past, or present customers need help from your solution, it’s best to use cold subject lines that resonate most with their critical pain points. That way, you’re getting straight to the point and hopefully intriguing them.

For example: [Number] tips for [pain point]


You’ve just got a deal moving; now you need to stay top of mind with prospects without being overwhelming.

That’s why follow-up subject lines are crucial for keeping the conversation moving.

For example: Any feedback?

No response

It happens—a lot. Your prospects may suddenly disappear for weeks or months at a time – and that’s okay, but you need to be able to reel them back in or finish the conversation altogether.

No response subject lines are a perfect tool for deciding whether to keep trying or let them go.

For example: [Prospect name]?

Meeting requests

You want to meet with your prospect, but why should they meet with you?

You need to make it easy for them to say yes, which is why meeting request subject lines are short, to the point and contain only crucial information.

That way, prospects spend more time deciding whether to attend or not rather than wondering what you want.

For example: Meeting invite: [Date] – [Time]

89 Best Sales Email Subject Lines to Increase Open Rates

Simply copy and paste any one of these sales email subject lines and increase your open rates and, hopefully, your responses!

Direct Sales Email Subject Lines

  • (Prospect name), quick call [day]?
  • (Prospect name), have time to discuss [challenge]?
  • Appreciate any response, (Prospect name)
  • Connect?
  • [Pain-point] making you [emotion]? I can help.
  • How to solve [challenge prospect faces]
  • A [benefit your solution provides] for [prospect’s company]
  • A better way to solve [challenge]
  • [Prospect name], let’s talk about [solution]?
  • [Prospect name], can we connect over a quick call [date]?
  • [Prospect name], do you have [timeframe] to discuss [solution]?
  • Quick question, [Prospect name]?
  • [Prospect name], I have an idea for [prospect’s company]!

Curiosity Driven Sales Email Subject Lines

  • More wins inside for (prospect’s company)
  • [Odd number] companies solved  ______ with us!
  • Did you know?
  • Can you help me?
  • [Prospect name], guess what?
  • [Prospect name], have you heard about [solution]?
  • [Odd number] reasons why [prospect’s company] needs [solution]
  • [Prospect name], can you guess how much [benefit] our solution provides?
  • [Prospect name], are you curious about [solution]?
  • [Prospect name], have you seen our latest success story?

Pain-Centric Sales Email Subject Lines

  • Struggling with [pain point]? I can help.
  • Fix your [pain-point] in [x] [days,weeks,years]
  • Key challenges in implementing [solution]
  • [Company name] X [Product Name] = [Benefit]
  • [Pain point]: There’s a better way 
  • [Prospect name], struggling with [pain point]?
  • [Prospect name], are you tired of [pain point]?
  • [Prospect name], let’s solve [pain point] together.
  • [Prospect name], can we help you overcome [pain point]?
  • [Prospect name], imagine a world without [pain point].

Scarcity & Urgency Sales Email Subject Lines

  • Don’t get left behind [name]
  • I’d hate to see you miss out…
  • You’ve still got time…
  • Last chance to solve [pain-point]
  • Time’s running out -solved [pain-point] yet?
  • The clock’s ticking.
  • [Prospect name], last chance to take advantage of our offer.
  • [Prospect name], act fast before [offer] expires!
  • [Prospect name], limited time to solve [pain point].
  • [Prospect name], don’t miss out on [benefit]!
  • [Prospect name], urgent: [solution] can solve [pain point] now!

Cold Sales Email Subject Lines

  • [Name], [Question]?
  • [Number] tips for [pain point]
  • Can I help?
  • We have [Insert Common Fact] in common
  • [Prospect name], have you considered [solution]?
  • [Prospect name], let’s chat about [solution]!
  • [Prospect name], can I help you solve [pain point]?
  • [Prospect name], a new solution for [pain point].
  • [Prospect name], would you like to learn more about [solution]?
  • Quick question [Name]…

Follow-up Sales Email Subject Lines

  • Your next steps
  • [Number] options for getting started
  • Quick call — [date & time]?
  • Any feedback?
  • I thought about what you said…
  • What will it take?
  • [Prospect name], following up on our conversation.
  • [Prospect name], did you have any further questions?
  • [Prospect name], checking in on your progress.
  • [Prospect name], here are some next steps for [solution].
  • [Prospect name], let’s schedule a follow-up call.

No Response Sales Email Subject Lines

  • Last time, I promise
  • Shameless last attempt!
  • (Prospect name)?
  • Should I assume?
  • If you change your mind…
  • RE: The last email
  • Is this goodbye?
  • Goodbye, [Prospect’s Name]
  • Time to part ways?
  • I’m moving on
  • [Prospect name], is everything okay?
  • [Prospect name], hope to hear from you soon.
  • [Prospect name], last chance to take advantage of our offer.
  • [Prospect name], are you still interested in [solution]?
  • [Prospect name], let me know if you change your mind.
  • It’s not you- it’s me.

Meeting Request Sales Email Subject Lines

  • [Number] minutes this [Day]?
  • [Prospect name] + [Your company name]: [Date]
  • Meeting invite: [Date] – [Time]
  • [Prospect name], let’s schedule a meeting for [date & time]?
  • [Prospect name], can we connect for [number] minutes this [day]?
  • [Prospect name], a meeting invite for [date & time].
  • [Prospect name], let’s set a time to discuss [solution].
  • [Prospect name], meeting request: [date] – [time].

Discover A New Way to Generate Leads

Like blood to a body, a full sales pipeline is necessary for your business to survive. The thing is, prospecting has evolved, and old methods just aren’t useful anymore. 

Join Prospecting Power and learn how to ensure your customer acquisition strategy is creative, persistent and, most importantly, generates real results.

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