You’ve got a business idea, product launch, or important news, and you’re bursting with enthusiasm, and want to share it with the world.
You need an email that’s engaging, professional-looking with great imagery and branding, and effective at getting people interested in what you’re selling or want to say.
An HTML email template is what you need. But how do you go about creating one?
Simplelists are here to help you create an HTML email template with ease by following a few simple steps.
What is an HTML email template?
An HTML email template is a pre-designed layout that you can use to create emails. They come in a range of different shapes and sizes, with different features and benefits. Some may be more suited to your needs than others, so it’s important to know what they are before you start using them.
An HTML email builder allows you to quickly build professional-looking emails without having any design skills whatsoever.
They’re also great if you want consistent branding across multiple campaigns or newsletters as they allow for customization options such as colors and logos.
If you’re looking for a simple and easy way to create professional-looking emails, then using an HTML email template is a great choice.
What is a Plain Text email format?
Plain text email is a simple, readable format for email messages, also known as “text only” and “no HTML”.
A Plain text email is stripped of any fancy formatting, such as colors or graphics, and just contains the bare bones of what you need to say. It’s simply an email format that can be read by any device or computer, regardless of the operating system.
Common uses for plain text emails are in sending transactional messages, such as purchase receipts or password resets. It’s a great option for people who don’t have any special requirements when it comes to sending an email.
Email Plain Text VS HTML: the Pros and Cons
There are two main types of email: plain text and HTML. Plain text emails are easier to read but don’t stand out as much. HTML emails can be more engaging, but they’re harder to read (especially on mobile devices).
An ideal solution would be to use both in your emails — but which one should you choose?
Our table gives you an overview of Simplelists’ pros and cons to email plain text vs HTML.
||Plain text emails
|Engaging emails (color, graphics & video)
|Social media buttons
|Flexible email templates
|Enable tracking and analytics
|Not seen as spam
|Quick loading and opening speed
|Suitable for group emails
HTML Pros & Cons
Create colorful and eye-catching emails
HTML emails allow you to include images, graphics, and video that showcase products, alongside design formatting (e.g., color, logo, placement) to grab readers’ attention on certain information — such as price or call-to-action (CTA) buttons.
Make your emails look professional
Maximize the use of design features to make your company’s brand image and identity prominent, including logos and banners. You can also use HTML emails to create a consistent look and feel across all your marketing campaigns.
Structure emails into easy-to-read sections
Through short and eye-catching sections, HTML can help you to structure emails in an easy-to-read way. Create text boxes, links, and CTA buttons that are placed in a logical order, which makes it easier for readers.
Offer some social media buttons
They can include buttons that allow recipients to share their email with their social networks, increasing the chances that people will see it. If being shared to be viewed on multiple devices, it’s important to use a responsive email template. This means that recipients will see your email regardless of where they read it or what device they use.
Create flexible email templates
HTML emails are more versatile and allow for a wider variety of designs than plain-text versions. The flexibility to create a responsive email template is one of the most important features of HTML emails, as it allows recipients to view and interact with your message no matter where they’re reading it.
Enable tracking and analytics
They also provide analytics for email campaigns, allowing you to see when emails were opened, links that were clicked on, and what percentage of subscribers went on to make a purchase, etc. This is valuable information to improve future campaigns and develop the best possible email strategy for your business.
More easily go to spam
Email providers use a variety of criteria to decide what emails are spam and which ones aren’t. Because HTML formatting can be difficult for email provider’s filters to digest, as a precautionary measure for their users, it can mistake your message as spam — even though you’ve done nothing wrong!
Plain Text Pros & Cons
Quickly loading and faster opening speed
Plain text emails have a smaller file size than HTML-based emails, so they load faster and are less likely to get stuck in spam filters. Buffering times are drastically reduced for plain text emails since there are not so many elements or graphics to load.
Less engaging and similar to a text message
The impact of plain text email is only reliant on the copy and is often used for transactional messages that require little thought or action from the recipient, like confirming an order or updating account information. Because of its lack of visual appeal, plain text tends not to be as engaging as HTML email templates would be with embedded features.
Limited analytics options
Email campaigns that rely on plain text may require self-reporting for tracking purposes. As a result, the only way to measure success is by how many recipients write back. Text-based email campaigns are great for sending out information. However, if you want to increase sales and maximize engagement, creating an HTML email template may be better.
Better for one-on-one emails
Plain text emails excel at writing sales letters and other types of informational copy. Their prose is efficient, informative, and well-suited to one-to-one communication.
Get sending to your list straight away with Simplelists
Building or managing an effective email list can be challenging, especially if you’re new to online marketing.
At Simplelists we’ve got a lot of great features to help make building your email list easier than ever before.
With an easy-to-use interface, you can create multiple lists for different audiences, with a direct sign-up form integrated into your website.
Why not try us for free, you can build and send to your email lists in just a few clicks.
Sign up today for a free trial
When you’re crafting an email for your audience, you’ll probably spend a lot of time coming up with a compelling subject line to try and improve the open rate and avoid triggering spam filters.
You might also spend hours making sure that the content of your email is relevant to the target audience, contains appropriate imagery, and has a clear call to action.
But how much time do you spend reviewing your email footer?
The answer for many organizations is ‘not much time at all’.
Email footer design is often overlooked during the email development process, but it shouldn’t be. Email footers can be just as important as other areas of your email, and failing to include certain information in your footer can mean you don’t comply with legislation.
In this article, we’re going to look at why email footers are so important, the content you should include in your email footer, and share some best practice tips for email footer design to help you get more out of your emails.
Why is email footer design an essential part of an email?
An email footer is an essential part of your email as it provides information to ensure your organization complies with legal requirements, enhances the memorability of your email, and encourages your recipients to engage with you further.
There’s an interesting concept called the ‘serial position effect’ which suggests that people typically have a better memory of the things they see first and last, with content in the middle being less memorable.
With the footer of your email being the last thing your audience sees before they close your message, it’s important that it leaves them with a positive lasting impression of your organization and encourages them to explore your brand further through the use of a clear call to action or signposts to further content.
Your email footer is also where you should include certain information that is required by law.
In the UK, the Companies Act 2006 made it necessary for the email footer of any limited company or partnership to include:
- Company name
- Company registration number and country of registration
- The details of your registered office address
In the US, the CAN-SPAM legislation also requires that an email footer includes reference to a physical address where people can reach you.
Legislation across the US and Europe also requires you to make it easy for your recipients to unsubscribe from your emails. So having a clear and simple unsubscribe link in your email footer is also essential.
Be mindful that legal requirements vary from country to country, so it’s important to seek the right legal advice based on the location of your business and your audience.
What should an email footer include?
Your organization is unique, and your email footer is going to reflect that.
There are certain things that you need to include in your footer to be compliant with legislation.
But outside of this, the things you choose to include in your email footer design depend on your objectives and the impression you want to leave on your audience.
Your email footer can help reinforce your brand identity to your email subscribers. So it’s often recommended to include your logo, brand fonts, and brand color scheme in your email footer design. This helps your recipients to recognize your brand and make the connection between your website and other marketing materials.
Social media links
Many email footer designs include links to an organization’s social media profiles. This can be a great way to direct your email subscribers to your other online channels, so you can build stronger relationships and promote your products or services across multiple platforms.
Links to relevant resources
You might also consider including links to relevant blog posts, white papers, or case studies in your email footer if your objective is to establish expertise and authority with your recipients.
If you want your email to be more conversion-focused, you might consider a clear call-to-action in your email footer design that encourages your audience to take a specific action such as signing up for an event, booking a consultation, or making a purchase. If you’re linking through to your website from your CTA, make sure your landing page is well-optimized.
Testimonials or reviews
If you want to build trust and credibility with your audience, another thing you might include in your email footer is a recent testimonial or review. This can help provide social proof to your audience, and demonstrate the real-world benefit of your organization, service, or product.
Awards or accreditations
Including the logos of any awards or accreditations your organization has won can also be a good way to establish trust and credibility with your audience.
Important news or upcoming releases
Another thing you might consider including in your email footer is the headline of some recent news about your organization, that links through to the full article. Alternatively, you might include a teaser for upcoming products or services to raise awareness amongst your subscribers.
A link to your referral program
If you have a referral program for your business, your email footer template can also be a good place to remind your subscribers of the benefits of referring their colleagues, friends, and family.
A link to your email preference center
The key to successful email marketing is relevancy. An email preference center allows your subscribers to tell you the type of email content they are interested in, and their preferred frequency for receiving emails. If you have an email preference center, including a link to it in your email footer is another good idea.
Branding is important in your email footer design
You have a lot of options for what you might choose to include in your email footer template.
But it’s important to remember that less is often more.
Try to keep your email footer clean, clear and concise, and resist the temptation to include too much information. Decide on what is the most important information for your organization to communicate, and focus on delivering that in the most effective way possible.
Many organizations choose to include their logo in their email footer template. This can help create a visual connection between the email and your brand and can increase brand recognition and recall.
It’s also important to make sure your email footer design aligns with the branding and color scheme of your website and other marketing materials. This can help reinforce your branding and helps create a cohesive experience for users across all your different marketing channels.
Reminder - don’t forget the legal requirements!
It’s easy to get caught up with creative ideas for what you might include in your email footer design, and how it can help you build a stronger connection with your audience.
But don’t forget about the important legal information that needs to be in there.
Failing to include the relevant information in your email footer can result in your organization being issued a fine of up to £1000.
As a quick recap, the information that any limited company or limited liability partnership needs to include in their email footer includes:
- Company name
- Company registration number and country of registration
- The details of your registered office address
You also need to include a clear unsubscribe button that allows your recipients to easily opt-out of receiving further emails from you.
Other legal information you might want to include in your email footer is a link to your terms and conditions. This can be useful for outlining the terms of service for your products or services.
How to create an email footer
Your email footer design is a really important part of your marketing emails.
It’s important that you design and build your footer in a way that looks professional, is visually engaging for your audience, and delivers maximum impact.
If you have access to an in-house designer or have freelance design support, they will be able to help you communicate the messages you want to convey in a visually appealing way.
If it’s something you feel like you want to tackle yourself, there are a number of pre-existing email footer templates on affordable design solutions like Canva.
If you’re looking for some inspiration for your email footer design, the following articles have some good examples:
Remember, for email footer best practice it’s important to keep it simple and easy to read. Try to avoid cluttering your email footer with too much information, and stick to a clean and simple design that is consistent with your branding.
Once you have your footer designed, you’ll need someone to create it as part of your HTML email template.
The person who usually produces your emails should be able to translate your design into a working email footer that is ready to be included as part of your next email campaign.
Make sure your email footer delivers a strong ending to your email
If you’ve followed this article to the end, you’ll understand why your email footer is an important part of your email marketing strategy that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Having an effective email footer design can help you comply with legal requirements, leave a lasting impression on your audience, and encourage them to engage with your brand further.
Ready to put these tips into practice? Sign up for a one-month free trial of Simplelists.
At Simplelists, we make email marketing easy and have full support for HTML emails. Register for our free trial, and see how simple it can be to reach your audience with emails that include your brand-new email footer.
Sign up today for a free trial