In my last blog, I provided statistics on the growing mobile market and the importance of optimizing emails for mobile. So now that you know you should, here’s how you can!
There are three primary options for making your emails mobile-optimized. Here’s a quick look at how each option works, as well as the pros and cons.
The first option is called fluid layout, meaning the email width expands or contracts depending on the size of the viewing screen. This straightforward approach to mobile optimization is easy to execute: set the width of your email to a percentage rather than having a fixed width. This way, the email effectively flows across whatever screen it is viewed on.
Here’s an example of a fluid email layout…
…and how it looks fully open in Outlook:
Pros of fluid email layout:
Scalable design is an option that features a single “mobile-friendly” layout that looks good on small and large screens. Unique features of this approach include:
Pros of scalable design:
Responsive design allows you to change the way your email looks or is displayed depending on the size of the viewer’s screen. It gives you an enormous amount of flexibility to add, remove, or re-arrange the content of your email so that your subscribers will have the very best experience, no matter what device or email client they read your email on.
Here’s an example of an email…
…and the responsive version on a mobile phone:
Pros of responsive design:
Despite the cons, responsive design is by far the best mobile optimization option, and Lyris is fortunate to have experts in this area, including our Sr. Strategy Consultant Andrew King. Rather than step on his toes, I’ll share these resources so you can learn his perspectives first-hand:
Recorded Webcast:Making the Case for Responsive Email Design
Recorded Webcast: The World Has Gone Mobile — Have your Emails?
Blog: What I’ve Learned from 100 Responsive Emails
Blog: Not your Average Responsive Email Design
Blog: Email Inspiration: Six Great Responsive Email Designs
Blog: Email Inspiration: Six More Great Responsive Email Designs
Blog: Responsive Email Design: 10 Great Examples
I’ll close with this excerpt from a blog by Lyris Global Head of Strategy Philip Storey, 5 Predictions for Email Marketing in 2014:
Designing for ‘mobile-first’ will become ‘the norm’
A study by Litmus in December 2013 showed that for the first time ever, mobile is the single leading platform for consuming marketing emails, worldwide. I believe 2014 is the year where email marketers will begin to design for mobile-first, even before we design for desktop and Webmail scenarios. For those companies that are yet to dip their toes in the water with mobile design, 2014 will be the year that they go responsive/scalable or skinny, simply because that’s where their prospects and customers are most likely to be opening and reading their emails.
Are you ready to “dip your toes?” In my next blog, I’ll continue to share the expertise of our strategic services gurus with a look at how to get started with a mobile optimization strategy and keep it performing well. In the meantime, download our complementary marketing guide, The World is Optimized for Mobile – Are your Emails? to learn more.
If you have specific questions about mobile optimization, send them in the Comments sections below, or to email@example.com. One of our experts will be sure to get back to you!