Email Design - The Basics
While I say efficient layout, I mean that the newsletter should inspire confidence, build a connection of trust and devotion between your business and costumers and in no case it should frighten or create negative associations. The main things at a fantastic email layout are: it needs to to be readily recognized, have an internet based version, easy unsubscribe choice; integration using social networking, which will be essential nowadays and a mobile edition. The content will be well structured and exhibit all the images properly.
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Design continuity. When someone receives your newsletter, especially if it's the first time, he should understand immediately who the sender is. This will create the first impression which can lead to one of the following: that he will read or instead ignore your email, or even worse, will mark it as spam. You ought to be consistent and designing your newsletter in the same fashion. It should be picture and brand goodwill of your site. Include your logo in the header of this newsletter along with your slogan or other symbols of your manufacturer. Use the very same colors, fonts and images according to your site as much as you can. At the footer of this newsletter, include your contact information. At exactly the same place you're able to provide a small explanation why the reader received this email from you. It would sound something like: "You're receiving this newsletter because you signed up to receive Your CompanyName newsletter. To ensure our newsletter always reaches your inbox, please add infoatyoucompanyname.com to your address book."
The internet based version. A number of your subscribers can't or don't want to look at html mails in their email clients. This is why you need to include a "View the online version" link in the header of your own newsletter. This link will open the newsletter from the default browser.
Integration with social websites. Your newsletter is a great way to gather more fans on your Facebook page, more followers on Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube etc and more subscribers to your RSS feed. To connect your readers with your account on your treasured social websites, just don't forget to include in a visible location of your newsletter the respective call to action links. Also, you may add Facebook "Like" and Twitter "Twitt" switches for each article, product or entire newsletter. Or a much easier way to promote your newsletter is to bring a "Forward to a friend" link.
Good content structure. Do not just duplicate on your newsletter all the content from your website. If you've got a promotion, a specific offer or an important announcement be sure to place it at the most visible place, above the rest of the content. Choose which content is most important and put it at the top. Grab attention with big titles and coloured telephone to action buttons, but be careful not to overdo it. Do not put full content. A few paragraphs using a "read more" link to your site are enough.
Using pictures, flash, interactive forms. The majority of the email customers have the pictures turned off by default. That's why it is not recommended to include significant content inside pictures. You need to make sure your readers will be able to get your message even if they had the pictures turned off. The graphics you use shouldn't be too big. Keep in mind that some email clients (like Outlook 2007) don't support background images. Don't embed flash and don't use interactive types.
Designing for cellular. Optimize your newsletter for mobile devices or make a mobile-friendly version of your newsletter and provide a link to it.
Simple unsubscribe chance. Don't neglect to add an unsubscribe link. Don't even try to conceal it from the reader. If a person made a decision to unsubscribe, it's better to let him go than to find a annoyed subscriber, or worse, a spam complaint.
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