August 29, 2018
An Email Marketing Glossary Entry

What is an email alert?

An email alert is an email message triggered by external conditions such as a change in an account, an event announcement or a system failure. Email alerts are subscribed threads: users subscribe in order to be notified of the changes.

Email alerts:

  • are usually short email messages
  • are dispatched to subscribers based on specific conditions (i.e., triggers)
  • typically contain a brief summary of the relevant details
  • are meant to trigger a response
  • are directed to users who explicitly subscribed to them

Also known as:

  • Email notifications

What are email alert used for?

In online marketing, email alerts are used to notify subscribers of new sales, price drops, and other similar events, based on the user's preference.

To this day, electronic mail remains the most ubiquitous asynchronous mode of communication between humans -- and because the email address itself is a common unique user identifier -- email alerts are often the last line of defense to keep businesses running smoothly.


  • An email alert is sent to administrators when a critical server fails to responds
  • An email alert is sent to a customer who has an item on his or her wish-list that just went on sale


The Mailman

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