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  1. #1
    SitePoint Addict
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    Where can I find HTML email standards?

    Up until now I have been coding my emails using tables, as I am unsure of what is supported and what's not supported in outlook as far as CSS goes.

    Is there a good resources that gives standards of HTML emails?

    Thanks for the help,

    Jon

  2. #2
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  3. #3
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    Alan22, that isn't exactly a list of web standards for E-mail.

    JonParks, unfortunately e-mail is like the Wild West, there are no standards that exist or are commonly accepted. Quite frankly you may as well stick with using tables because support for CSS in e-mail is a hazardous game with no real bright outlook. E-mail client's have a very mixed bunch of support for HTML so the best thing you can install is have a whole bunch of e-mail clients installed on your computer, send a test message to an account which all of the clients can access and see how they all render. That is really the best we have these days, it really isn't a good place to be in terms of standards.

  4. #4
    Barefoot on the Moon! silver trophy Force Flow's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, there are no standards since each email client or webmail service does whatever the heck it wants.

    As such, what I usually do is a table layout and (for the most part) inline CSS. External CSS files and style tags tend to get stripped in webmail services.

    You can forget about javascript, as support for that is much more spotty/nonexistent than CSS support in webmail/email clients

    Here's a site that lists some of the "gotchas" of html newsletters:

    http://www.reachcustomersonline.com/...1/23/09.27.00/

    There are a few dozen of these kinds of sites kicking around, which may also prove useful should you run into specific issues.

    For testing webmail, I have accounts for gmail, hotmail/MSN/live (they're all the same), and yahoo. For mail clients, I usually try eudora, thunderbird, outlook express, outlook 2003, and I probably add the windows live mail client to the list.

    Testing with that wide array usually covers 99% of the issues that may crop up.
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  5. #5
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    Thanks for the help. From everything I've ever done and seen coming into my inbox, it doesn't appear that background images are supported in tables, is this true?

  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard bronze trophy bluedreamer's Avatar
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    Check out http://www.campaignmonitor.com/resources/ - some very useful info on creating HTML email.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophybronze trophy Nadia P's Avatar
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    These are my references for creating HTML emails:

    http://www.sitepoint.com/article/code-html-email-newsletters/
    http://www.sitepoint.com/article/designers-guide-html-email/
    http://www.sitepoint.com/article/principles-beautiful-html-email/

    One of the SitePoint articles links to two services: CampaignMonitor and MailChimp.

    CampaignMonitor does not recommend the use of image maps becausee of poor support by Gmail:
    http://www.campaignmonitor.com/blog/...k-in-html-ema/

    MailChip recommends being careful with image placement simply because many clients will automatically block images when the mail is first loaded:
    http://www.mailchimp.com/articles/st...sign-mistakes/

    Both sites have free templates you can download to use.


    Check out the Email Standards Project They have run the tests on the various e-mail clients both web and desktop and can give you a pretty good idea what is supported.

    Litmus which is an online app for testing in a multiple e-mail clients. Very similar to Browsershot for testing HTML pages.




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