How to handle image-blocking e-mail clients

You might think that with so much high-speed Internet in the world and new and improved e-mail client software, that your HTML e-mail campaigns will be viewed in their entirety by your recipients. But according to Campaign Monitor, the popular e-mail marketing service, e-mail clients like Outlook and Gmail are actually more frequently blocking images from being downloaded. So, instead of your beautiful graphics and images showing up in your recipients’ inboxes, your e-mail may end up looking more like this…

Whether it’s a default or personal preference, many of your e-mail subscribers are blocking images in your HTML messages. There’s even a small number of people who block HTML messages entirely. A 2009 report states that only 48% of e-mail recipients see images automatically. This means that if your e-mail campaign relies heavily on images, it’s probably not being read by over half of your recipients.

When you’re about to send out another e-mail campaign, make sure you realize and be prepared for images to be blocked automatically. Here are a few tips from Campaign Monitor:

  • Ask your new subscribers to add your e-mail address to their address books and briefly explain why they should.
  • Try to use as much live text as possible for the most important information.
  • Use ALT text and/or captions in your images to describe them.
  • Avoid image-based e-mails. Sure, they may look prettier, but the whole point of e-mail marketing is to have your subscribers actually read your message.