Comments on The Coming Revolution in Email Design

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  1. As a web developer who uses email alerts, workflows, and whose thousands of customers are locked into high security models, I’d like to dash some cold water on this view of a brave new world.

    Email (phishing, spearphishing, whaling, etc) is the largest security hole in the enterprise. Press email software providers to help fix that problem before you develop better ways to market to people using email (a practice for better or worse regarded by most people as ‘spam’).

    Millions of customers in the enterprise have email restricted to text-only, so make sure your opt-in includes that option, and (increasingly I find this to be a problem) enforce a true text-only email result if the customer selects that option. I cannot count the number of ‘text-only’ emails I receive which are 90% tags and 10% text, buried under a heap of markup.

    You may be delighted to be able to present a beautiful, code-heavy marketing presentation to Jane Officeworker in their inbox. But if that mysterious interactive code (jQuery or whatever) doesn’t slide by the security protocols it will be removed. If the recipient responds to this sales pitch during office hours, they might be tagged by monitoring software. If the recipient has ever suffered a phishing attack, they will probably flag your email and your domain will be routinely blocked for sending active code in email.

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  2. Nice article thanks for sharing. Stanistani said “Email (phishing, spearphishing, whaling, etc) is the largest security hole in the enterprise.” In my humble opinion people are the largest security hole. :)

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  3. Hmm.

    While email isn’t probably going anywhere soon, pushing HTML web pages to one’s inbox, however nice and interactive and animated, is not the way forward in my humble opinion.

    The real revolution is happening as we speak, in people’s (native) chat apps. iMessage, Allo, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Slack, ... That’s where businesses need to look at and invest in.

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  4. With so many new forms of messaging available it only seems inevitable that email would eventually catch up to the innovations we’ve seen from these new platforms. It’s possible that email could fade away if it doesn’t keep up, but with the sheer amount of people who still actively use email today it doesn’t seem like that will be any time soon.

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  5. Today people get so many e-mails and to create new customers it is to important to be different and use new methods. Thanks for sharing this usefull post about the e-mail design. I think the rebelmail goes in the right direction, I try to implement it for my page http://www.praktischarzt.de - lets see if I can create more direct dynamic interactions with new customers.

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  6. Well, there are two major enemies to security: complexity, and convenience. Introduce either to E-Mail, and you’ll get a lack of security (and privacy, too) in return. And HTML introduces both of them.

    For those of us who can’t live without the web in the inbox, willing to shell out tons of bitcoins for the ransomware they’re inviting, ok, there you go.

    For me: no thanks.

    Just my two cents.

    Michael from Germany

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  7. Hello,


    This article most usefull for me . So Thanks For the sharing this artilce related to The Coming Revolution in Email Design

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  8. Yes very interesting post about this design. Thanks for this sharing but what about security? I heard that could be an hole

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  9. Given the choice, I choose plain text.

    I have my email client configured to show plain text even in the presence of HTML (given multipart/alternative); I just wish that it would handle HTML-only via a plain text approximation.

    If I want a web page, I have a web browser for that.

    So yes, do check that your mail is readable as plain text, and do make sure that the URLs are present and don’t run into following text…

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  10. Nice article thanks for sharing. Some interesting points mentioned here good job.

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  11. Or—code as a table, max 600 pix wide, the way email html likes to be. Make each “cell” into an embedded table. The table “cells” will line up vertically in the order entered - you can have two or more on a row if you would like. Max width of each table/cell is 280 pixels. This accommodates the tendency of images to just TAKE the room they need no matter what width is entered in the table cell or the table itself. Make the images 280 pixels and they will fit into the older, smaller phones. 280 image, paragraph text 280 wide can have 10px padding and 10px margin, therefore it doesn’t smack against the sides or each column when viewed on a desktop instead of a phone. And the lack of border-box capability means 280 + 10 + 10 + 10 +10 = 320px - the width of portrait view of the older iPhone which some people are still using.
    A bit of a pain, but it works. Works on my old iPhone 4s, passed all the Litmus test, works on everything.
    I was freelancing for Staples before I got this gig and they were trying to figure out how to make responsive email. Others made the images and the design decisions—I’m not taking credit for those. But “responsive tables in old school code” that’s all me. I sent them to myself and to managers through the Salesforce interface and also tested them in Litmus’ free tool, putmail, as well as on my collection of old phones n things.

    http://www.wendy-walsh.com/email-mobile-coffee-vid-testedit.html

    http://www.wendy-walsh.com/email-mobile-newsletter-testedit.html

    Feel free to use and re-use the source code for these. It will always work. I do agree that email should be less dependent on images. These are pretty image-heavy. They were sent only to people who specifically requested them as part of the Staples rewards program.

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  12. It has always amazed me that google, that monster of the internet, does not send out responsive emails from its spam blocking services. They are sent in html, in a table where the 3rd column, the one holding the long description of the email, is about 4 characters wide. This leading to emails that scroll for ever as each entry is several screens deep with loads of blank space.

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  13. Email design is playing key role to attractive customers and it has potential for marketing. I am working as email marketer at http://www.webilogics.com/ and using same technique that you has mentioned in the article. thanks good stuff

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  14. Great article on email design! A revolution in email design is something I think many design agencies have been waiting for. We started using email campaigns over 15 years ago to grow our agency and we were adding interactive elements back then using Flash. So having interactive emails would be something that’s not only welcomed but long over due.

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  15. Great article. I would choose plain text if I have to. Beside that, email security is one of the problem to consider too. I also agree with the idea that rebelmail has gone in the right direction. I tried it with my website and I have created more interactions with new customers.

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