Email Design that Works

Email Design that Works

You don’t have to be a design wizard to come up with a great email layout. Let’s dive in to the basics of email marketing design! These tips will help you create a clean, professional, and compelling marketing piece you can send with pride.

Keep it Narrow
Standard screen sizes have changed dramatically since email marketing first became popular, leading some to question whether email dimensions should change as well. Most experts will recommend that you keep your width under 650 pixels. This will ensure your emails are easy to view on mobile devices.

          Downward Design
Another great tip to keep your design mobile-friendly is to design your email so the content is read top to bottom, not right to left. This ensures that readers will scroll vertically to read your emails, not horizontally (which can be difficult on a mobile device.)

Previews with a Punch
There are two ways that readers preview their emails: subject lines and preheaders. Subject lines display in your reader’s inbox and describe the main focus of your email. Preheaders (also called the preview pane or Johnson Box) are the first few lines of text in your email that are shown as a “teaser” in the inbox. These short snippets should be accurate and compel your audience to open the email.

Branded Headers
An email header is the first thing you’ll read when you open an email. Brands often use one header throughout all emails for consistency. Headers may include your business logo and other relevant branding, an option to “view in browser,” or navigation to your website.

Clear Content
Clarity and brevity will be your best assets when designing your email. Don’t overload your readers with too many ideas or visuals. Include white space in your design and be very clear about what action you want your audience to take. The goal is to make your content clear for those that are scanning and not reading your email.

Enticing Visuals
Images are a great way to entice readers and keep your content interesting. Embedded images will show in most of your readers’ email platforms, but some platforms block images by default. That’s why it’s important to keep all critical information in the body text of your email and not in the images. You can also add alt tags to your images. Alt tags display as captions if your images get blocked. These tags should be as brief as possible while still accurately describing the content of the image.

Call to Action
In most marketing pieces there is a CTA, or a “call to action.” This is where you directly ask your audience to take a specific action. This could be to register for an event, check out your website, purchase an item, or any number of behaviors. It’s important to include a CTA in your email, and then make it as clear and easy as possible for readers to complete that action. Include CTAs in your email using hyperlinks or buttons that drive your readers to an external web page.

Simple Footers
Email footers have less flexibility than headers. Due to anti-spam laws, most countries require that your email contains a link to unsubscribe from the email list and a postal address. Placing this information in the footer is a dependable way to make sure this critical information is included in every email. Footers often include other contact information, disclaimers, or social media buttons.  

If you need help with email design or creating a great email marketing strategy, call HPR Marketing at (800) 991-9356.