How to Welcome Contacts with Email and SMS using Automations

Sending a welcome series to new audience members is an easy way to introduce Contacts to your brand, encourage engagement, and convert leads into customers by nurturing them along a journey from awareness to conversion!

In this article, we'll explain how to set up a welcome Automation for new contacts, taking advantage of both email and SMS messaging!

🚦 Before Getting Started

Create at least one List in for new Contacts to be added to. We recommend using one List that all new Contacts are added to and a newsletter List that Contacts are added to after they complete this welcome Automation.

To create your new Automation

  1. Click the Automation icon 
  2. Click New Automation 
  3. Click Start from Scratch 
  4. Enter a name for the Automation
  5. Click Start


  Add a Trigger

Add a trigger to start your welcome series Automation:

  1. Click + Add Trigger
  2. Select the Subscribes to a list trigger
  3. Optional: select a trigger limit
  4. Select your List
  5. Click Done

💡 Pro Tip

All Automations require at least one trigger, but you can add as many as three! Check out our Automation Triggers guide for details on all trigger options.


  Add an Email Node

Check out our Automation Actions guide for details on other available actions like updating Contact Profiles, updating an Automation, or using a Webhook to pass information into Sendlane!

Add an email communication node by clicking the + button > Send Message > Email > Create New Email

You can duplicate this email for all future email nodes in this Automation. Campaigns or emails created in other Automations will not appear in the sidebar, but saved templates and previously sent Campaigns can be accessed on the Content page of the email builder.

The Automation email builder is the same as the Campaign email builder. Check out our guide to building email Campaigns for detailed instructions on creating your email message!

When you're satisfied with your email content, click Activate to activate your email! Automations will skip any email nodes that are not activated.

  Add a Wait Node

Wait times should be added after every communication node in an Automation to give Contacts time to engage with your content before receiving further communication. Best practices suggest at least 24 hours before each communication.

To add a wait node, click the  + button > Wait > Set your desired wait period and timing options > Done


  Add an SMS Node

Add an SMS node after your first email to capture your Contacts’ attention in case they missed your first email by clicking the  + button > Send Message > Send SMS

Add a link to your SMS to make it easy for Contacts to check out! You can use a link like if your store has a universal cart link structure or a link back to your store’s home page.

Check out our guide to SMS Content best practices for more details!


  Add Update Contact Property Actions

You can move your new Contacts from your main List to your newsletter List by adding 2 Update Contact Property actions to your Automation.

1. Click  + button > Update Contact Property > Subscribe to List > Select your Newsletter list

2. Click  + button > Update Contact Property > Unsubscribe from List > Select your Welcome list


  Activate the Automation

If you'd like to start your Automation at this point in the funnel, click Active in the top right corner of the Automation builder and Activate to confirm your activation!

💡 Pro Tip

Make sure to test your Automation from start to finish before activating it! 

This Automation will now send a welcome email to all Contacts who subscribe to the List(s) you specified in your trigger! Read on if you'd like to add more modes to your welcome series Automation, or check out our Additional Resources and Troubleshooting topics below.

Check out our Automation Actions guide and Automation Logic and Timing guide for details on adding more targeted content, goals, logic, and timing to your Automation!

Additional Resources

For helpful content on crafting powerful welcome series emails, check out these resources from the Sendlane Email Automation Journal:

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