Reflecting on 2023

Naomi West avatar
Naomi West@emailfromnaomi

2023 was a busy year for Parcel! We held our first virtual conference, four Summer Sessions, expanded our team, and pushed out many product updates that people loved!

Reflecting on the year, we heavily invested in “oiling the machine” — which, I can say with certainty that big things are coming as a result in 2024.

Before we tee up for a new year, here are our reflections on what we achieved in 2023.

Product development

Inbox preview groups

You can now collect and save your favorite email inbox previews to a group for easy testing during QA. We’ve seen this leveraged in many ways, from grouping mobile email clients to grouping dark mode to grouping email clients based on their market share.

Personalization templating languages

Leveraging personalization will be the hottest trend in 2023” is what we heard in multiple marketing prediction blog posts, so we thought we might as well jump on the bandwagon and support developers leveraging dynamic data within their emails! Jokes aside, email creators can now preview their emails with various templating languages, including Liquid, Handlebars, and ESP-specific versions of those for and Iterable.


For those used to duplicating files to work off of a standard design, Parcel now supports the ability to save a file as a template. By savin templates, you can now select from them easily the next time you create an email from scratch instead of duplicating files.

Accessibility improvements

We added further rules to our accessibility checker, including a color-contrast checker for light mode and dark mode.

Carbon Footprint Calculator

Launched in response to Alice Li’s Litmus Live session on the sustainability of your emails, Parcel now offers a free carbon footprint calculator.

Accessibility fixes Transformer

Toggling on this Transformer will solve a handful of accessibility issues that are commonly found in email templates, including adding alt-attributes where necessary and defining table roles.

CSS variable Transformer

Using the CSS variable Transformer now allows developers to get the advantages of using CSS variables without worrying about lack of support in email clients.


Parcel Unpacked

We held our first Parcel Unpacked on January 17th and 18th, featuring sixteen speakers. Over 750 individuals registered for the event, and we had SO much fun! The recordings of the sessions, ranging from code quick tips to accessibility to career progression conversations, have gathered just over 3,500 views on Youtube and are now available for anyone to watch!

Summer Sessions

Craving more events after Parcel Unpacked, we hosted four virtual Summer Sessions where the community connected over Zoom to chat through relevant industry topics. Although we purposely decided not to record any of the sessions, we compiled a recap of links and resources from each discussion.


We love talking about email!

Owned channels

Looking back at 2022, we sent a total of 133,321 messages. Primarily via email, as we hadn't yet heavily invested in in-app messages to communicate with our users. Our 2022 email volume comprised of !important tips (our weekly newsletter), onboarding emails, and various other product touch points.

A celebratory in-app message from showcasing our 2022 message volume of 133,321 messages.
A celebratory in-app message from showcasing our 2022 message volume of 133,321 messages.

But in 2023, we increased this volume by 67% and sent 223,171 emails! We also started to leverage in-app messages to deliver communication to those when they opened the product.

In-apps are one of my favorite channels, as you can capture the attention of those who might be unsubscribed from email.

A recap email from, showing our new message volumes. Over 200k emails sent, 15k users on the platform, 8 campaigns launched, and 140k in-app messages.
A recap email from, showing our new message volumes. Over 200k emails sent, 15k users on the platform, 8 campaigns launched, and 140k in-app messages.


Pause emails

After offering subscribers the ability to “pause” emails from us for 30 days, we looked at the results of this and determined that due to the lack of engagement, we would sunset this initiative moving forward! As a marketer, it was an experiment I always wanted to run and say that we offered. But with less than a handful of people engaging, I don’t think I would make a push to develop it again in the future.

Text-based vs. designed emails

After A/B testing text-based vs. designed emails, text-based emails resulted in higher conversion! This was a huge learning for our team as we explore where to allocate resources in the future. Although designed emails look beautiful, our subscribers found more value in text-based emails, which are quicker for our team to produce. So it was a win for both our subscribers and the Parcel team!

Case studies

We published our first case study in 2023 and then followed it up with another four! I feel like I spend a good amount of my week speaking with customers, either over Zoom or async via Slack, but actually putting pen to paper (virtual pen to paper, of course) to write about how they use and leverage Parcel was a larger task, and ended up being rewarding in more ways than one.

Although the end goal of these case studies was to hopefully serve as collateral for others in similar positions to inspire Parcel use cases, I felt like the end result was a celebration of the five customers in how they used Parcel internally at their organizations.

Owning and creating an email design system is no small feat, and I feel proud to know some of the individuals behind our featured teams. Congratulations to Comic Relief, Biltcard, Yale School of Management, Emailancer, and Adventure Subaru!

Learn Email

We launched our first multi-part free course on email HTML and CSS foundations. Designed and written by Mark Robbins, over 450 individuals were keen to pre-register and start learning when the course launched in November.

Currently, the course covers getting started with email code, creating a single-column email, and creating a multi-column email. We expect to launch further modules focused on styling and accessibility in the new year.

Community & partnerships

Email Markup Consortium

We supported the EMC in producing their second accessibility report, where we processed just over 300k emails through our accessibility checker.

Really Good Emails

We continued to support email creators and innovators in easily saving email files from Really Good Emails to a Parcel workspace. Ideally to be used to discover different coding techniques and learn from some of the best!


Parcel now supports the open-source project HowToTarget, and we’re excited to continue to help developers target individual email clients in their code.

Layoff support

This was a hard year for many impacted by layoffs. We all know someone directly or indirectly impacted by layoffs this year. In February of 2023, Parcel launched layoff support, in which anyone impacted can use Parcel Pro for free for three months. This support can help any creators or developers establish a code portfolio and land their next role.

Looking forward to 2024

Looking ahead into 2024, the Parcel team will continue to work towards its mission of being the best email coding platform. We want creators to feel confident and at ease with creating 100% accessible emails — and we have some pretty cool features coming up that will enable many to do just that.

We also are committed to continuing to support multiple roles. Whether you are an agency building emails for many, an IC developer needing to move quickly, or a marketer focused on iterating designs with fresh copy, Parcel will be a resource that supports you.

We want to be more than just a product but also a community that continues to support one another in the email space. We look forward to what's ahead and can't wait to kick off the new year with another Parcel Unpacked, where we, as email creators, can take inspiration from to drive our strategy in 2024.