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The Anatomy of a Heavenly Newsletter Design

We have often observed marketers confuse an emailer with a newsletter. Hence, they tend to create a newsletter full of special offers instead of adding value or providing informative content in it. An ideal email newsletter should include the content with a view to build long term relationship with email subscribers.

So, how do you design a divine newsletter that can help you build relationships? Well, Monks bring to you the anatomy of a heavenly email newsletter design to help you strengthen your connections.

 1) Be Careful about Snippets &Preview Text – The very first section of a newsletter is the preview text or Johnson Box. The text of your Johnson box is also displayed right after the subject line in the inbox, and is utmost important to improve the open rate of an email. Let’s understand the best practices of using snippets & preview text in a newsletter.

• Use snippet text space to build on subject line for certain email clients like Gmail & Outlook
• Use Johnson Box to build on subject line or a brief about the email
• Preview pane top is 400X300 Pixels. So, make sure the height of the Johnson Box doesn’t exceed 150px or the content from your email body would be pushed
• “Having trouble viewing this email? View it online.” Phrase is passé, and is not a good practice – please avoid. Instead, Consider Pre-header text as the second subject line. You can offer coupons and discounts in the pre-header text or create a sense of urgency by offering extra discount for a limited period

 2) Maintain an Appropriate Height& Width – The ideal width of an email newsletter is between 500-650px. For mobile devices, maintain the newsletter width between 320-550px. While the height of the emailer varies based on the amount of content, try to keep your newsletter short and easy to skim through as readers don’t prefer to scroll down an email much.

 3) Establish a Perfect Balance between Text and Images –Try keeping a decent ratio between text and images. Your emails might land in the spam folder if you include too many images in the newsletter. Moreover, many email clients do not display the images by default. So, adding a text that summarizes the offer or message to readers is a wise decision.

 4) Optimize the Images & Visuals–Many email clients do not support the background-image property. Try using fallback color for background images for the colors to render well. You can also consider using Gifs in your newsletter to visually appeal your readers. Furthermore, add ALT text to the images so that in case your subscribers are struggling to view the images due to poor internet connection, the ALT text will give them an idea about the image.

 5) Stack up Your Content with Email Advancements – Your subscribers will not be interested in your newsletters if you they get to see a huge clutter of text. Try using Menus in email through CSS3 animation to stack up your content and make your newsletter look clean and easy for users to scan through.

6) Overcome Typography Challenges –A strong typography not only engages the subscriber, but also covers up the overall email aesthetics. So, let’s have a look at the best practices to overcome the typography challenges.

• Dodge the orphans
• Maintain the right spacing
• Mend the Rags
• Multiple typefaces in an email will ruin the user experience
• Make the correct choice of text size and style, based on subject prominence

 7) Take the Footer Seriously  Footer is as important as any other section of your newsletter. It should consist of unsubscribe button & organization’s contact details, so as to ensure that they are CAN SPAM compliant. Apart from that, don’t forget to add social buttons and links to your key services.

8) Optimize your newsletter for mobile devices – With over 67% of emails viewed on mobile devices, optimizing emails for mobile devices is inevitable. Keep an eye on the following things while you optimize your newsletter for mobile devices.

• Switch to single column layout for mobile devices
• Maintain a tappable CTA with minimum size 44×44
• Consider using hybrid coding for your emails to render well in Gmail app
• If you have a high Apple subscriber base, create images with double the size to render it well

Takeaways

  • Don’t go for a lengthy newsletter – your subscribers will get bored. J
  • Everything in excess is not good, just like too many images in newsletter.
  • Typography is a challenge, you must overcome it.
  • Stack up your content with latest CSS3 email advancements.
  • Optimize your content for mobile devices by maintaining a good space between each line.
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Kevin George
Kevin is the Head of Marketing at EmailMonks, one of the fastest growing email design and coding companies. He loves gadgets, bikes, jazz, and breathes ‘email marketing’. He is a brand magician who loves to engage, share insights with fellow marketers, and enjoys sharing his thoughts on the latest email marketing best practices at EmailMonks Blog.

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