Thursday, May 09, 2013

Is Outlook Mangling Your Emails?

Last week, we talked about some general email rendering issues. This week, we want to dig a little bit deeper. Specifically, let's tackle potential rendering problems using MS Outlook. Why highlight Outlook? Well, let's just say that the Outlook "issue cup" can certainly runneth over - or so we're hearing.

When the original gets mucked up
When your email looks less like Robert Redford's classic Great Gatsby and more like Leonardo DiCaprio's techno-Gatsby version, you know something's not working as it should. (Sorry, couldn't resist).

Here are 8 ways to troubleshoot and avoid some common issues:

1. Start with any tables you may have in your email. Does every table - and column - have a width?
Spot check your code. Make sure the column widths plus any cell spacing you have both add up to the width you gave your table.

2. Make sure that all of your images have a set width and height, as well.

3. Whenever possible, avoid CSS.

4. Replace floats, div's, background images, padding and margins with basic HTML.

5. Consider replacing the spaces between words with   if the words appear to be 'pushing' together.

6. Switch out new paragraphs with double line breaks: </br></br>.

7. If your whitespace isn't showing up well, try making a white image with a set width and height, and then putting it in your email.

8. Check all of your HTML and make sure you aren't missing any end tags and fix any HTML errors.

That's about it for now - and we hope this helps a bit. If you continue to have rendering issues with Outlook or experience problems not addressed here, feel free to give us a shout. We're here to help, and our team has seen just about everything.

Until next time, have a great rest of the week!