The line between transactional and commercial emails sometimes can be ambiguous, but both laws and industry best practices for deliverability require that some aspects, like opt-in and unsubscribe, be treated in very specific ways depending upon the message type. That’s why the team at SparkPost has created this infographic to help you understand the difference between transactional vs commercial email. It’s the email difference!

  • Transactional emails are sent in response to a user’s interaction with a web site or an app and are defined in strictly functional terms. Examples include password resets, shipping notifications, receipts, legal notices, and so on.
  • Commercial emails are sent to a list of recipients who have opted-in for promotional content from your brand. Examples include sales offers, newsletters, new product updates, email designed to increase user engagement and onboarding, etc.

Whether you’re sending a transactional email or a commercial one, make sure your message gets where it’s going, gets read, and makes an impression. Following a few simple best practices will ensure your emails hit their targets—and stay out of the spam folder.

Ready to Learn More?

And when you’re ready to really make the most of your transactional and commercial emails, be sure to check out SparkPost’s great series of downloadable guides about transactional email. Starting with Vol. 1, “Navigating the Divide Between Transactional & Promotional Content,” the series also includes “Building Trust and Loyalty with Transactional Email” and “Designing Transactional Email to Build Brand.” These guides are great resources you won’t want to miss.

Transactional vs Commercial Emails