Nuts & Bolts - Email: 4 Design Rules That Boost Deliverability
Web designers may think of cascading style sheets (CSS) as a good way to ensure Web pages look great in any browser, but CSS can seem like cancer to inboxes. With antibodies known as spam filters, email clients attack messages in formats they don't support—like the sometimes improperly rendered CSS designs.
• Avoid CSS to help ensure email deliverability. That's the first bit of advice from Ross Kramer, cofounder and CEO of Lititz, Pa.-based email marketing firm Listrak.
"You probably already know that many factors—such as reputation, list hygiene, bounce rates and server configuration—impact your email deliverability," he says. "But email design also has a major effect."
Kramer also offers these design-based rules to help direct marketers avoid spam filters:
• Use the appropriate size and layout. "Design HTML messages with a maximum width of 600 pixels" so recipients can see them in preview panes. Keep important messaging in the top 300 pixels. Limit email sizes to 40 kilobytes for fast downloads.
• Consider other HTML best practices. Provide links for various purposes, such as providing recipients with Web versions of email messages and alternative methods of viewing documents that would be cumbersome email attachments.
For more deliverability best practices, visit http://bit.ly/9CzLSi