Using transactional emails with Shopify

Keep your communications consistent with the transactional email manager

Gareth Burroughes avatar
Written by Gareth Burroughes
Updated over a week ago

Create and turn on Dotdigital transactional email templates in your Shopify store to provide your customers with consistent and relevant order details. You can set up transactional email sends for a number of different events that happen in your Shopify store, such as a new account, an account update, or a new order. You can also use the transactional email manager to choose which transactional emails you want to send out to your customers.

Before you start

Things you need to know:

  • You must have a Shopify or Shopify Plus store connected to a Dotdigital account.

  • Your Dotdigital account must have the Ecommerce permission enabled.

  • When you activate transactional email on your account, it counts towards your messaging allowance.

  • We advise you switch off transactional email templates in Shopify for those events you want to replace with a Dotdigital template.


If you’re a Shopify user, you can’t turn all Shopify event notifications off. There are two transactional emails that are automatically sent by Shopify: Order confirmation and New account confirmation.

We suggest you replace the content in these transactional email campaigns with a Thank you! email. Order cancelled and Shipping confirmation transactional emails can be turned off by clearing the selection for these notifications when you are editing your store.

Shopify Plus

If you’re a Shopify Plus user, to avoid duplicating emails, you must ask Shopify Plus support to turn off the notifications you want to replace by using a Dotdigital template, or ask to have all of them turned off:

  • customer_accounts_welcome

  • order_confirmation

  • shipping_update

  • order_cancelled

  • refund_notification

Create a branded transactional email template

Create brand familiarity with your contacts by branding your transactional email templates. You can upload a logo, add fonts, and change the colours of the template.

Template creation

If you installed your Shopify store using the installation wizard, you can skip this step, as you would have set up your templates during installation.

To access the transactional email manager:

  1. In Dotdigital, go to Connect, then under Installed integrations and extensions select the Shopify tile.

  2. Select the Transactional email tab, then select Setup transactional email templates.

  3. Set up your branding by editing the available fields:

    • Logo
      Select Choose file to upload an image of your logo to brand your transactional email template.

    • Font
      Select the font type you want to appear throughout your template.

    • Body text colour
      Select the primary body text colour of your template.

    • Heading text colour
      Select the heading text colour of your template.

    • Button/link colour
      Select the colour you want your buttons to appear as in your template.

    • Button text colour
      Select the colour you want your button text to appear as in your template.

    • Brand highlight colour
      Add a line of colour to your template, so customers can recognise your brand faster.

    • Email footer
      Add a footer to your transactional email template. This is a great place to put your legal text.

  4. Select Generate templates. Or select Delete to delete the current transactional email template.

Once this is complete, you can turn on your templates.

Use the transactional email manager

If you haven’t created any transactional email templates yet, you can select SETUP TRANSACTIONAL EMAIL TEMPLATES to do this.

If you have already created your transactional email templates, you can reset your branding on these emails if you want to. To do this, select REGENERATE TAILORED TEMPLATES.

If you set up your transactional email templates manually, and not as part of the installation wizard, you might see the option Configure brand styles instead.

Account notifications

For Account notifications, select Turn all off or Turn all on to turn all of your transactional email notifications on or off for your customers.

To activate a transactional email template, switch the toggle to On. To disable a transactional email template, switch the toggle to Off.

Each default template has an Actions drop-down menu. Expand the Actions drop-down menu to preview, edit, or swap out the current template.

Design transactional email templates

Remove all unsupported building blocks

When designing your transactional email template, you must remove all unsupported building blocks.

Learn more about unsupported building blocks for transactional email templates in Create and design a transactional email template.

You don’t have to remove your unsubscribe link because it’s automatically removed when you send the campaign.

  1. Go to Automation > Triggered email.

  2. Select a campaign to edit it or, to create a new campaign, select ADD NEW.
    Learn more about creating a new email campaign in Create a triggered email and the section Design a campaign with EasyEditor.

  3. To add Shopify variables to your campaign, drag a text building block onto the EasyEditor canvas and enter variables into the text box. You must insert all variables into text building blocks.

  4. Select SAVE.

Insert variables

Variables help to personalise your email campaign so that the information is correct and relevant to your customers’ orders. For example, if you create an order confirmation email campaign, you might use the following variables for your campaign layout:

Hi, ##{{ data.order.billing_address.first_name }}.

Thanks for your order ##{{ }}!

Your order status is now: ##{{ data.order.order_status }}.

You've ordered the following products:
Items{% for product in data.order.products %}
##{{ }} (
##{{ product.sku }}) x
##{{ product.qty }}
{% if product.option %}
{% for option in product.options %}
##{{ }}:####{{ option.value }} |
{% endfor %}
{% endif %}
##{{ product.price_inc_tax }}------------------------------------
{% endfor %}

Learn more about the different types of variables you can use in Shopify variables for transactional email templates.

Subject line variables

You can only use four variables in the subject line of your transaction email template:

    Inserts the first name of your contact.

    Inserts the last name of your contact.

  • @ORDER_ID@
    Inserts the order ID based on your contact’s purchase.

    Inserts the order number.

You can’t use other variables in your subject lines.

Did this answer your question?