Gmail testing just got a whole lot more important

By David Greiner on 14th December 2006

GmailLet’s face it, a big chunk of us designers love and use Gmail. While it certainly doesn’t have the market share of the big guys like Hotmail and Yahoo! Mail, it’s definitely a favorite amongst the design and early adopter communities. If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably also well aware of the fact that Gmail plain sucks to send HTML email to. It strips out all but inline CSS often murdering that nice email design you’ve spent so much time crafting.

At least it’s always been pretty easy to identify what percentage of your subscribers are using Gmail and make a decision on how much compatibility work to do accordingly. Well, those days are limited.

A few days back, Gmail launched MailFetcher,  a great new service that allows you to check all of your POP email accounts within the Gmail interface. This means regular old emails sent to bob@jones.com or even bob@yahoo.com might actually be opened in the Gmail interface, and as such be butchered accordingly. If you haven’t already, this is even more reason to add Gmail to your email testing roster, which we’ll be writing more about here shortly.

3 Comments

  • Paul Wille
    20th December

    No kidding, Mark. Too bad Google didn’t improve GMail’s ability to render HTML emails at the same time.

    At least with analytics, you can see over time how many referrals you get from GMail. But that’s where the silver lining ends in this story.

  • Liam Smith
    21st December

    If anyone has any resources on presenting css emails in Gmail/Hotmail I’d love to see them. I’m a complete novice at email newsletters, having only just started to get my head around web css/html.

  • Dave Greiner
    21st December

    Liam, we’ve put together an article about the best approach to CSS in email, including a sample template here. Hope that helps.

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