The concept of responsive email comes from responsive web design. Ethan Marcotte first defined responsive web design in 2010. The idea was that a web page should display components based on the medium. The look and feel of the page should differ depending on whether you were seeing it on a desktop or a mobile device.
For print media, artists change the shapes and orientations of the content depending on whether it is published in a book, a newspaper or a magazine. In a similar approach to print media, responsive designers are supposed to optimize for the output device. The content should look like it was natively created for the device.
Reasons for Using Responsive Emails
Here are some compelling reasons for adopting responsive designs for emails:
The rise of mobile: Businesses used to optimize their emails for desktop environments. The assumption was that most people use desktops to access emails. But according to Adestra, in November 2018, 62% of users check their emails on mobile devices. However, it doesn’t make sense to target mobile-only and miss out on potential customers. So responsive email is a great solution that allows businesses to auto-change the look and feel of the emails according to the platform.
More Clicks: According to Mailchimp research, responsive designs improved mobile email clicks from 2.7% to 3.1% which is a 15% increase in actual clicks. So for businesses who are invested in email marketing, the extra clicks from responsive design can make a huge difference.
With great responsive emails, you can target mobile devices better and improve your email open rates.
Best Practices for Responsive Emails
Responsive email is not about only scaling the content to fit the screen. It’s also about customizing the content to take advantage of the available screen real estate. Responsive emails use CSS media queries to find out about the target device and produce custom-made content.
Here are some things to remember during the design process of building responsive emails:
Tip #1: Keep the design simple in a single column layout. Complex designs make the content difficult to comprehend.
Tip #2: The call-to-action (CTA) button is the most important piece of real estate on the screen. So make sure it pops out in the designs for both desktop and mobile devices.
Tip #3: Make sure all components that are displayed on the screen are easily readable. Also, use optimized images to keep everything fast.
Tip #4: Test multiple designs to make sure your audience is enjoying the experience.
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