Hacking your way to mobile friendly emails

Guna Nadar

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The Best practice to shoot up your analytics

 

For many years now, mobile devices have been the preferred way for web searches and on-the-go reading. Though end users access their emails through a variety of devices today, around 60% stick to their mobile email application. For businesses, there is another interesting statistic to take note of. Research done on as many as 160 B2C brands suggests that emailing is core to their business processes. This includes all sorts of industries including retailers, manufacturers, non-profits, hospitality and travel companies, restaurants and anything that you can name. The sad part however is that only 12% of these businesses have switched to a responsive email design. 10% of the rest use a mobile-aware design and the remaining 78% haven’t been able to get over a desktop-centric design.

Rendering emails across email clients and devices is a thoroughly misunderstood concept. However, a business marketer must also keep in mind that 90% of email notifications are opened just once. This will only mean that there is but a single chance to be able to impress the client/customer. Again, users don’t use a single email client. Gmail has a totally different look than Microsoft Outlook Express or Hotmail. Also, devices like the iPhone6 has its own browser and email clients that give access to the user’s email accounts.

Looking into the industry trend should be considered as the “best practice” for every brand to dive into their analytics and glean what customers are using. A tech savvy audience will definitely be more inclined towards recent email clients as provided by Apple or Android. However, the traditional corporate favorite will still be Outlook Express. On the other hand, while a fashion brand cannot choose to ignore responsive email designing, a real estate brand can solely depend upon bigger access devices – desktops, laptops and tablets.

Analyze the top 5 email clients popular with your customer and find a way to responsiveness.

Mobile Code Format hacks

Email coding can be quite complicated but it is easily understood when categorized into being either of ‘mobile first’, ‘responsive designing’ and ‘flexible layout’.

The mobile-first concept will put “mobile-friendliness” above anything else. From accessing the mail to sending a reply with attachments, everything is tailored to make it easy for mobile users. However, emails following a ‘mobile-first’ interface will make desktop screens look awkward. Consequently, this is to be used by brands that solely depend on mobile marketing.

Responsive designing on the other hand delivers the best design/interface results, regardless of the access device. Though a bit of complex code format, responsive designing tailors itself to the client’s requirement and the device’s limitations. The same email opened on mobile devices might be just a ‘single-line’ CTA, but when opened on a desktop, it will be a lengthy message with images, longer texts and several CTA’s. Responsive coding uses media queries to ramp up the email marketing process.

Lastly, ‘flexible layouts’ is a midway between mobile first and responsive coding. They are also easier to code and look great in both smaller screens and larger devices. The downside however is that the design opportunities are highly limited and kept to a minimum. One cannot expect to get highly graphical and dynamic interfaces with ‘flexible layouts’.

Layout hacks

To achieve the best crossover across devices, the width of an email can be comfortably set at 600 pixels on the higher end. This works in both the 27 inch desktops and the 4.3 inch Windows Phone 8X. Though, this won’t be covering smallest screens (less than 4.3 inch), it will look good in most of the devices used to open emails. Going another step further, you can also add a 300 pixel of minimum width to accommodate narrow screens.

Designers also recommend a single column layout to work across devices. Magazine styled layouts on the other hand are complicated to be turned responsive and doesn’t also look good on anything else than a desktop.

Image hacks

JPGs are universally used as the most preferred image format for emails. If you want a bit of animation, GIFs are recommended. PNGs are advised if you are also looking for a bit of transparency.

Accessibility hacks

Mobile users prefer decreasing screen brightness to save upon battery. Muddy and dull colors don’t make the expected impression. Go for contrast and use software tools to check the content as seen by people who are visually impaired, color blind, have blurred vision, or other kinds of macular degeneration.

Finally, keep on testing until you have achieved the format that connects with the majority of your userbase.

Category :

SEO News

Tags :

Mobile Friendly Emails, Responsive Email Design

About Guna Nadar

Guna Nadar

Brief Info about Guna Nadar +

I mostly write technical aspects and not much into creative writing. For the past decade I worked along with top notch SEO & Internet Marketing professionals which naturally lured me into the world of Search Engines. When I am not writing I read from comics to philosophy.Antiques, Fishing, hunting are my passions. Currently I am working on Google Penalty protection and .... more info


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