Email Preference Center – Why You Need It

An email preference center gives your subscribers a choice in the type or frequency of emails they get from your organization. It is or can be a great alternative to a simple global unsubscribe page where email recipients can remove themselves completely from your list. An email preference center can help a brand retain more subscribers by offering subscribers more options.

With the average person receiving up to 100 emails/day it’s no surprise that some of your subscribers will have an email fatigue and click on your Unsubscribe link, even if your emails are awesome and personalized. Implementing email preference center can help you retain 10-30% of your possible unsubscribes on your lists.

Many email marketing platforms offer an option to setup email preferences, but the setup steps vary dramatically and aren’t always simple, so most marketers simply don’t bother and end up with plain unsubscribe pages.

Does your unsubscribe page look like some of these?

Simple Unsubscribe preferences


Some providers attach email types on your email preferences page to your lists, which becomes a cost multiplier and cost prohibitive feature to use. If you are considering a vendor switch make sure to research the cost attached to any features when reviewing email marketing service providers.

Email Preference Center Types and Examples

There are 3 main types of email preference centers and many with subtle variations of these types:

Content Type Email Preference

This is probably the most common type of email preference center. It lists different content types that a subscriber may opt-out of. The content types can be subscriber topics of interest, event types, nature of communication (e.g. educational, promotional, or activity notifications), or even product lines.

BigMailer Unsubscribe page


Time-Based Email Preference

This type of preference center is very popular with e-commerce brands and gives your subscribers the option to receive email less often or take a break. The Priceline example below offers subscribers to choose a frequency of the emails.

Priceline unsubscribe

And this awesome unsubscribe page from Papa Johns offers to take a break from the emails for a specific time period – 30, 60, or 90 days.

Papa Johns Unsubscribe Page

Content and Time-Based Email Preference

This type of preference page uses content type and mentions typical frequency of the emails sent for each content type. This type of preference center is the most helpful as it allows subscriber to decide whether to they want to receive emails from a brand based on the frequency of emails and not just based on their interest in the the content.

Hybrid Preference

Got your own examples of great email preference centers or want to get featured in this article? We would love to hear from you.

Final Thoughts

If your brand currently doesn’t have an email preference center you should make it your goal to set it up. If your email marketing platform doesn’t allow you to manage email preferences, consider upgrading – we put together a detailed comparison of email marketing service providers that lists major features and pricing in an easy to reference table.

Curious to try BigMailer? We offer a free Startup plan for up to 1000 contacts that has no feature limitations with the exception of white label (offered on Agency and Enterprise plans only). Go ahead and create your free account, you will be pleasantly surprised with the value we offer.