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Do you feel like your emails could use a makeover?

Do you think your subscribers are bored with your campaigns? Or maybe you’re bored with your campaigns.

Either way, it’s important for marketers to remember that trends change—especially design trends.

What looked stunning and modern last year simply won’t cut it today.

8 fresh email design ideas and trends to revitalize your newsletter

In this post, we’ll go over a few tips for sprucing up your email newsletters and campaigns. We’ll also provide some cutting-edge email design ideas to help you grab attention and improve conversions.

Email design tips to keep in mind

Design matters.

Over 70% of your subscribers will delete your email in under three seconds if it doesn’t look right on their device—it doesn’t matter how amazing your copy or coupon is.

Furthermore, another 15% of people will simply unsubscribe from your list entirely rather than deleting the email.

In other words, there’s an 85% chance that you’ll lose out on current and future traffic with just one poorly designed email.

Use these email design ideas to make the most out of every design you create.

Don’t sacrifice accessibility.

Remember, you aren’t designing emails to woo other designers. You’re designing emails to wow your subscribers. If it isn’t completely accessible for everyone, then it isn’t a good email design.

When designing for accessibility, keep these tips in mind:

  • Colors with a nice contrast that are easy to read.
  • Hyperlinks in proper size with decent spacing.
  • Large font sizes and clear typeface.
  • Avoiding flashing GIFs or videos that could induce a seizure or migraine.
  • Plenty of white space and non-justified text.

Mobile always matters.

Over half of all emails are opened on mobile devices, and that number is only expected to keep climbing.

Responsive design is the only way to ensure that your emails always look right on every device. If you don’t use responsive design, you’ll end up creating endless code for each email campaign.

Plus, keep in mind that your subscribers could open your emails on multiple devices: first, on mobile and, later, on a desktop to make a purchase or take action.

Focus on your CTA buttons.

According to the design research experts at Nielsen-Norman Group, people expect CTA buttons to clearly describe what’s on the other side of the link.

Don’t be vague. Phrases like “Get Started” or “Learn More” aren’t enough to build trust with your subscribers. Customers find them misleading—especially when the landing page on the other side isn’t concise.

Instead, use phrases like “Start Shopping” or “RSVP Now” and create landing pages that remove as many clicks and hurdles as possible.

Take your fallback design seriously.

Keep in mind that your carefully crafted email design may not load on your subscriber’s end for many reasons.

Maybe they’re visually impaired and rely on text-based content with voice assistance software. Maybe they don’t want to eat up their monthly data loading images, so they set their email preferences to text-only. Perhaps their email client doesn’t support GIFs, so only the first panel loads.

Regardless, a lot of users rely on your fallback information, such as alt-text, to understand what you’re trying to tell them. Create a seamless and informational experience for every user.

Put your subscribers in control.

Automation and customizable responsive templates make it easy to create and send highly personalized campaigns. Instead of guessing about your subscribers’ preferences, you can just ask them.

Include a link in each email that takes the subscriber to a page where they can adjust their email preferences.

You don’t have to put every design element in their control, but you can ask how often they’d like to hear from you, what type of content they like, and specific design factors you’re unsure about.

Test, test, test.

First, you’ll need to run accessibility tests to ensure that your emails look as intended on every device and email client. Although Gmail and Apple iPhone make up the bulk of the market share, they’re far from the only email clients out there.

Testing and responsive design are more important than ever, as Huawei—the second-largest smartphone manufacturer in the world—prepares to release their new operating system.

Second, you’ll also need to A/B test for user behavior and preferences to see which email design ideas hit and which flop.

Email design ideas and trends to grab attention and convert in 2019

The truth is that users judge your credibility based on your design. You wouldn’t create a landing page with hit counters, right? You should stay up to date on modern email design trends as well.

Integrate these email design ideas and trends into your campaigns to wow your subscribers and create stunning email newsletters that convert.

1. Interactive content

Interactive content doesn’t have to be complex or detailed to encourage action and draw attention. By simply including a few small pieces of interactive content in your emails, you can get your subscribers clicking around.

Customers who engage with your content are 7x more likely to complete a purchase. Plus, marketers say interactive content is 93% effective, compared to static content at 70%.

Adding a small touch and element of suspense like this email from PRETTYLITTLETHING can go a long way.

Adding a small touch and element of suspense like this email from PRETTYLITTLETHING can go a long way.

Source: Really Good Emails

2. Dynamic personalization

What if you could create an algorithm that designed personalized emails in real time?

By integrating with Campaign Monitor, you can set up an automated system that tracks which email design buttons, images, and elements perform best once subscribers start opening your emails.

From there, the system will choose the best-performing elements and create a highly effective design to send the rest of your subscribers before they even open the email.

3. Embrace minimalism.

Minimalism is in. Avoid crowded layouts with flashing images and overlapping elements. Instead, focus your subscribers’ attention on specific areas.

Use a single-column layout. Write concise copy that gets to the point and sparks interest.

Loeffler Randall only included a few words in this email and used delicate graphics to push attention to the copy.

Loeffler Randall only included a few words in this email and used delicate graphics to push attention to the copy.

Source: Pinterest

4. Customized GIFs and APNGs

Custom GIFs are excellent for replacing video in your emails. They load faster and you can embed them directly into your campaigns.

APNGs are even better. They’re higher quality than GIFs, load even faster, and supported by major clients like Gmail.

Use GIFs and APNGs to add a little motion to your emails without the stress of video. Keep in mind that, if your subscribers’ email client doesn’t support GIFs or their connection is slow, they’ll only see the first panel as an image.

5. Gamification

As Amazon found out, gamification isn’t appropriate for every situation. However, when used well, it can add an interesting and engaging element to your email campaigns.

With the right code, you can easily turn your so-so emails into fun games.

UNICEF recently revamped their email design and content to include some gamified campaigns. Despite the serious nature of the content, the gamification isn’t offensive and, instead, draws attention to the issue addressed in the email.

UNICEF recently revamped their email design and content to include some gamified campaigns.

Source: Gmail

6. AMP Landing Pages

You can spend all day making your emails concise, actionable, and accessible—but what happens when your users click the link and land on your site?

Many top email clients like Gmail now support in-email AMP browsing. Instead of waiting for an email browser and landing page to load, users can view the entire page directly within your email.

Emails that include AMP landing pages will load faster and reduce the chances that subscribers will drop out before taking action.

7. Monochrome and gradient emails

On the topic of minimalism, monochrome or gradient color schemes are all the rage. The simplistic colors draw attention to your content. When you limit your color choices, this forces you to get creative with copy, image content, typeface, and contrast as well.

Kettle Obsessions used a monochromatic scheme with this email. Check out the single-color pasted background with high-contrast black text and graphics. Although they used a handful of colors, only one color is displayed per scroll.

Kettle Obsessions used a monochromatic scheme with this email.

Source: Kettle Obsessions

8. Live social feeds

With advances in coding and CSS options, expect to see an increase in live social feeds this year. Integrating your marketing campaigns is crucial for building brand awareness and trust. Marketers need to make it easy for subscribers to connect with them on multiple platforms.

Notice how this Dunkin Donuts email campaign includes embedded social media posts from various platforms to encourage engagement across different channels.

Notice how this Dunkin Donuts email campaign includes embedded social media posts from various platforms to encourage engagement across different channels.

Source: Pinterest

Wrap up

Design trends change constantly. Take a look at our favorite holiday emails from 2009 and see how they compare to something from today.

  • Integrate new design trends that suit your brand and content.
  • Design for accessibility and user-friendliness, not other designers.
  • Run plenty of tests.

Outdated design can actually hurt your brand’s credibility. As marketers and designers, it’s your job to stay on top of email design ideas and trends to create campaigns that convert.

With Campaign Monitor, you can create customized responsive designs with our drag-and-drop editor. Try it for free.

This blog provides general information and discussion about email marketing and related subjects. The content provided in this blog ("Content”), should not be construed as and is not intended to constitute financial, legal or tax advice. You should seek the advice of professionals prior to acting upon any information contained in the Content. All Content is provided strictly “as is” and we make no warranty or representation of any kind regarding the Content.
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