To make sure your emails are going to look great every time and you get the best results possible, below are some best practice tips to get you started:
Use Descriptive Links Instead Of Full Links Or Email Addresses
If you include full links or full email addresses as text within an email, you run the risk of being caught in a phishing filter. To avoid this try using a descriptive link instead. Using a descriptive link can also help you create a much stronger call to action, generating higher click-through rates. For example, “Read more about how our professional package can benefit you” is much more inspiring and concise link than “For more information go to [OurLongUnreadableURLThatIsDifficultToRead]”.
If You’re Copying And Pasting, Go Via Notepad First
Whenever you copy and paste from an external source such as Microsoft Word or a website, you could be bringing additional coding into your email. This could cause your email to render incorrectly in some or all email clients. Paste your copy into Notepad first (or TextEdit on a Mac) and this will strip the copy of all coding. You can then copy and paste from Notepad straight into your email. Your standard default settings on font size and colour will apply to that copy so you don’t need to worry about changing it once it’s in.
Resize Your Images
To make sure your email will look how you want it to in as many email clients as possible, it’s best to resize your images to the correct size you want them to appear in your email. Change your image to the right size using a resize tool in software such as Microsoft Office Picture Manager or your favourite image editing package. If you don’t have any image editing software, Picnik is a great free online tool you can use. Check if your email marketing provider has any restrictions or guidelines on maximum image sizes and/or dimensions.
Use A From Name And From Email Address That Your Subscribers Will Recognise
If your recipients don’t know who the email is from, they’re unlikely to open it. Most email marketing providers allow you to choose a from name and from email address of your choice although some will charge you extra for this facility. The question to ask is, do your subscribers know you personally (e.g. John Smith) or do they know your company, brand or product? It’s best to use whichever would be most recognisable to your subscribers. Don’t forget in a lot of email marketing packages you can use up to 128 characters, so you can have it all (if appropriate) i.e. “John Smith at Your Brand”.
Make Sure Your From Email Address Is Being Monitored
If someone responds to one of your emails, you need to make sure you’re prepared to follow it up (if necessary). Specify a From Email Address for your email campaign. This is where any replies or auto-responders will come to. It doesn’t have to be your day to day email address, but it does need to be an inbox you can monitor when you’re running a live campaign. How many emails do you receive which say “Do not reply to this email as the address is not monitored”? I want to get a response to my email campaigns and not make it difficult for my audience to respond. If you don’t want the email coming to an address that is already heavily used then set up a specific email address just for your email campaigns.