8 Dunning Email Templates for Inspiration

  • Written By:
    Jared Schneider
  • Published On:
    August 15th, 2019
  • Read Time:
    4 Mins
  • Category:

Failed payments contribute to churn, and we all know churn is bad for business.

Dunning emails serve as a reminder of the status of the customer’s account while also providing the steps to update their information and continue using the product.

Having the right tone in dunning emails is crucial to their success. The main message is that the customer should update their payment information but, the undertone should remind them of the value of the product and why they should want to continue paying for it.

Below are 8 dunning email examples from well-known companies that will show you how they use dunning emails to better their businesses. We’ll break them down and help give you an idea of how to improve your own dunning messages.


At PayKickstart, we have tested literally dozens of different dunning email templates. While each email in the sequence is tweaked depending on where the customer is in the process, this is a great example of the key elements that make up a great dunning template.

  • Customized with the Product Name in the subject line and first line of the email
  • Customized with the first name of the customer
  • Call to action to update their billing details
  • Notification of when the next attempt will be to process the payment
  • Contact details


The Skype message is a little different. They send a follow up email to see if you meant to cancel your subscription and if you did, are you really sure that you want to? For those that meant to cancel, the email attempts to put a little doubt into the user’s mind that they made the right decision.

The New York Times

The New York Times uses a lengthier model but it’s still effective because of its uses of a bold headline and underlined calls to action, which make it easy to skim. The company also provides multiple methods to contact them.


Spotify uses a relaxed method to give their customers a gentle reminder that something isn’t right with their payment information.

Stitch Fix

What we like about the Stitch Fix dunning message is that it is clear and actionable. They provide the customer an easy way to immediately update their payment information. The company also makes it a bit more personal by adding an email that the customer can use to reach the company directly should they need anything.


Hulu keeps it short and sweet with their dunning message. The message is very focused, it tells the customer that there is an issue with their account and then closes with a reminder of the product’s value and a good will message.


Amazon provides a clear explanation for the email as well as the consequences if no action is taken. The email then goes on to provide step-by-step instructions, making the process really user-friendly, something we can all appreciate.


Making your dunning email come off as worth-the-read is key. However, you don’t want to create panic, just a sense of urgency. Squarespace does this by adding the exclamation point in the corner of the message. Using the subject line of the email to create urgency is also a good choice and inspires the customer to open the email at the same time.

If you do not have dunning implemented in your online business, there is a massive gap of lost revenue that you are missing out on. Start to fully automate it with an integrated dunning service like the one that we provide our vendors and has saved over $2 million dollars in lost revenue to date!

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Jared Schneider

Jared Schneider is CEO of PayKickstart and a serial entrepreneur. He is passionate about helping thousands of entrepreneurs and businesses grow through advice, automating payments and providing affiliate tools.

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