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Just create an HTML page as your normally would. As a rule I would recommend creating a table (not a div) and making it a width of 600 pixels. Then put your content inside.
Also be sure to only use absolute links (ie: <img src=" http://www.yourdomain.com/images/email_image1.gif"> as opposed to src="images/email_image1.gif"). Also be sure that you have webspace if you are using images because the images will need to be hosted somewhere to be seen.
That's about it. And just remember to send yourself a copy to see what it looks like. Outlook 2003 and earlier use IE to render HTML while Outlook 2007 uses Microsoft Word to render HTML.
Yeah there's quite a few rules to keep in mind. You can't use background images, loads of different CSS rules won't work, by law you have to include unsubscribe capability and the physical street address of the business, plus many many more.1 person found this helpful
A good article to get you started:
A good guide to CSS support in different email clients/apps:
Also, if you're planning on sending this to more than 50 people make sure you're using a third party service. You can EASILY get your domain/ip blacklisted. If this happens no one from the ISP that blocks you will receive ANY mail from your domain, period. The third party services are cheap, help you stay on the right side of the law, and also allow you to track your results (open rates, etc).
Thank you SnakeEyez.
So, I copy and paste the src= code onto the email and send it, right?
Apologize, I'm kinda new at this, so am not 100% on what absolute links is.
An absolute link is the full path to your site including the http://www.yourdomain.com part. Relative links are typically used on web pages and are the links show a path that links the the two documents together. So if you had an image in an images folder as stated in my previous example it is as follows:
Now this is using an example as if you had that image linked from an index page on the website (ie: www.yourdomain.com/index.html). The relative link will only work if it is on the server where the image resides. Because you are sending an HTML email, people will not be on your server, they will be looking through their mail client. Thus the mail client needs the full http address to find the images.
Joey does make a good point about using 3rd party services to do this because they have tools more than a basic DW does to create both an HTML and plain text version of an email since most email clients block images by default and mobile clients will typically only show plain text emails. The only thing to know about these hosts is that if you are purchasing a list, even legally, they will ban you from their services. All lists you send from them must be opted in, in some form or another. If you are starting out and are building your own list from opt-ins the 3rd parties are the best way to go.
Another problem with hosted e-mail programs is that when your list gets large they are actually very expensive. But for a small list, they are ideal.