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Why send HTML and Text versions of an email?

When you’re sending emails out of Mail Campaigns we offer you the option to customise the main email (HTML) as well as a text version (Plain Text). This knowledge-base article explains the difference, and why we recommend you use both:

What is the difference between HTML and Text emails?

HTML Emails are probably the emails you’re used to looking at. For example, in Mail Campaigns v2.0, here’s the HTML editor for emails:

… here you can see that it’s easy to add tables, images, links, and formatting etc. just like in the normal WordPress editor.

The text version, however, is a plain textbox, all you can in here is type as you would a typewriter!:

 

So Why Use Plain Text Emails?

As Zero BS CRM sends out emails it uses Multi-part MIME to combine your HTML and TEXT emails into one, (we’ll spare you the technical detail). This bundling of email types is still important today, in ensuring high deliverability of your emails.

Here’s why we still use Text + HTML emails in Zero BS CRM Mail Campaigns:

1) Spam Filters

Today there is still sadly much spam in the world, and as a result the likes of gmail and other big email providers have significantly hardened their spam filters. There’s no getting around it, to get your mail seen you first have to overcome this hurdle.

The good thing is that because these filters like to see Plain text alternatives which are similar to your main HTML emails, you’re one step ahead if you use MC2. HTML only emails are marked down a few points by these filters, so it’s worth taking the time.

2) A Proportion of Email Users Still Read Plain Text Emails

You’d be surprised how many of your contacts still prefer to read plain-text versions of emails. We were surprised how many more responses we got when we started to use both in a bundle. However modern our email apps get, there will always probably be a contingent of users who prefer the paired-down simplicity of Text-only emails. A number of these users will simply NOT SEE your email if you only provider a HTML version.

 

Notes on Plain Text Emails

While there are great benefits in including a plain-text version of the email you’re sending out, it’s worth noting the following (good and bad) points:

  • Content should be very similar to HTML – spam filters often compare the two to see if you’re being an honest Joe
  • No Open Tracking – As plain-text emails don’t allow images, or other html, there’s no way of ‘open-tracking’
  • Not all of the ZBS Mail Campaigns placeholders will work – e.g. we can’t useĀ ##BIZ-LOGO## because there are no images in plain-text emails
  • ZBS MC2 Automatically generates these for you – based on your main HTML email, you can then simply uncheck ‘Autogenerate’ and tweak the text before hitting send, if you need to
Updated on August 9, 2018

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