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How to Design Email Newsletters
How to Design Email Newsletters

The design matters for the overall success of your newsletters. Here are some tips to ensure your recipients are opening and engaging.

Support Team avatar
Written by Support Team
Updated over a week ago

Here are some tips for designing beautiful email newsletters in BenchmarkONE.

Your Email Newsletter Must-Haves: 

  • Right Dimensions. Make sure your email width is 600px (or less). This will ensure nothing gets cut off.

  • “Johnson Box.” Pay special attention to the "Johnson Box" or the first 400px/300px of your email. Make sure it captures your recipient's attention and communicates the subject and point of the email right away.

  • White Space. Use white space and dividers to differentiate sections of content for your readers. This will ensure your emails aren’t overly designed and cluttered, instead give them a clean and organized look. 

  • Readable Font. Use a 16px font size for maximum effectiveness on mobile and desktop, and make sure you select a font style that is legible and clear. 

  • Image to Text Ratio. Make sure your image-to-text ratio is balanced, as this will ensure the overall layout looks good and proportionate. Try to keep a 60/40 text to image ratio.

  • Image ALT Text. Always define the ALT text for your images so that your clients do not miss anything.

  • Subject Lines. Your subject line plays a large role in whether or not your emails are opened. Craft a subject line that is creative and catchy. 

  • Pre-Header Text. Pay very close attention to your pre-header text, which is usually the first 100 characters of your email. This is the first thing your contacts see and is often in their email recipient’s "preview" pane.

  • Content Hierarchy. The most important content should be seen and read first. Make sure priority content appears at the top while the rest of your content flows afterward.

  • Differentiated Call-To-Actions. In newsletters, there will be numerous articles and CTAs to click on. Differentiate your primary and secondary CTAs so you can call more attention to the most important one. A common way to do this is to make the primary CTA a button and the rest as linked text.

The Dos and Don’ts of Email Newsletter Design:

  • DON’T rely entirely on background images. Some email recipients do not process them correctly. Inf act, Outlook does not process them at all.

  • DON’T send your emails from a no-reply address. You want to start a conversation, and a "no-reply" is a major turnoff for your contacts.

  • DO make sure the content within your newsletters is relevant and segmented to your specific audience. This will also help personalize your emails for your prospects. 

  • DO use short sentences and paragraphs. People do not like to read long emails, so link to longer blog articles or downloads to communicate further.

  • DO test your emails before sending them. Create email accounts on various servers (Gmail, Yahoo, AOL) and send emails to yourself to ensure they look good on each one. You can also use services like Litmus or Email On Acid to help easily view your emails across platforms.

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