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Format E-mail Correctly

     E-mail plays important role when communicating with your customers. Be certain to make your messages, including newsletters, look neat.

Variable Width

     A recent study conducted by EmailLabs revealed that people tend to read their e-mail within preview pane. Therefore, you should ensure that your message should look nice in that format. The same rule for web pages applies; your messages should fit within the preview pane without horizontal scrolling. Because the width of preview panes varies, your messages should be formatted accordingly. For simple text message, don't use hard carriage returns to wrap lines. Instead, make a paragraph consisting of one long line, so that the reader's e-mail client wraps the paragraph to fit within the preview pane. For HTML message, set the width with percentages rather than with pixels.

HTML or Simple Text

     Today, almost no one uses e-mail clients which cannot display HTML formatted messages. You can send HTML messages, if you prefer; however, be aware that most people configure their e-mail clients not to display images. Also, keep in mind that the same HTML message might appear differently on different e-mail clients and web-based e-mail services, such as hotmail or Gmail. Be sure to check how your message looks on each of them.

Character Encoding

     English speaking webmasters tend to ignore character encoding; however, if you use characters outside of the ASCII character set, these letters could be interpreted as non-English characters. For example, right single quotation mark would become foreign character in non-English language environment, even though it still may look like an apostrophe in English environment. Assign proper character encoding to avoid displaying strange characters.

© April, 2006