Email marketing programs are fast emerging as an interesting and profitable marketing channel.  As more and more organizations display an increased affinity towards going online with their promotional campaigns, email is becoming the most sought after mode of communication. Let us take a look at some useful tips that will help to make designing an email template a cake walk for you.

Follow the ‘F’ low of your layout

Research on the reading pattern of emails has revealed that readers follow the ‘F’ pattern while browsing or scanning an email. Considering that, it is therefore advisable that you position the most important part of your content, namely, value propositions, calls to action, logo, purpose, mission statement and so on in the top left hand corner of your template. Also, it is good if you focus on placing vital content like headlines in the area above the fold. This ensures that customers get to read and retain the information that matters the most at the very beginning.

Adhere to Horizontal Viewing Styles  

No matter what your viewing device, be prepared to have your email viewed in the Horizontal mode. In other words, the average viewing area for most devices, irrespective of the email client you use, would be 638×86 pixels.  Therefore, plan your design to scale a width to be roughly around 600 pixels.  Moreover, reposition any header graphics that you may have designed so as to accommodate any essential content in the most crucial position.

Going Double in Layout

Another very crucial layout design tip would be to opt for the two-column layout. As customers are very likely to scroll very far down in the short span that they devote to your email, it is crucial that you plan for putting your vital information in the path of their vision at the earliest. Your design could include a side column that scales to around 200 pixels in width and can be used to include secondary levels of information namely, navigational links and so on. For the primary content, however, build the main column, which scales to around 400 pixels in width and will host the bulk of your email content. Work on the positioning of the columns by testing on various email clients and choose the one which provides the best visibility.

 Limit the use of the Images

Images are a wonderful way to express your intent; however, in the domain of online marketing, using images has its own share of challenges. The first and the most obvious obstacle come from email clients who tend to block images while the email downloads. This will require you to manually download and view images. Make do with HTML and text formatting to get across your message. Though it is a far more attractive means to get your image across, it is no doubt best avoided in order to enjoy a seamless email viewing experience.

Go Back to Move Forward

Email clients hardly adopt the latest standards and some have even moved several steps back in technology. It is therefore wise to remain prudent and conservative in designing email templates. Keep things as simple as possible.  The best way to avoid disappointments is to test on email clients multiple times prior to launching the email campaign.  Use tables as the standard design, layout and opt for the inline CSS. Also, avoid using CSS short hands to eliminate confusion among different email clients.

Article source : http://www.isnare.com/?aid=1904298&ca=Internet