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3 Design Tips to Boost Email Deliverability

We all want to create high-performing email campaigns. Performance suffers, however, when emails are delivered to the SPAM folder.


Email deliverability refers to the ability of your messages to reach the inbox. It doesn't matter if your emails are beautifully designed and perfectly optimized if no one receives them.

Many factors influence whether or not your emails are delivered to the inbox, including the reputation of your FROM address (the email address from which the message was sent), the reputation of the sending platform, and further technicalities, such as email authentication.

All of these are critical, and should be discussed with your email service providers. Even if you're not a “techie”, the choices you make can impact email deliverability.


The choices you make from a design point of view can impact your ability to deliver emails to the inbox over time. Make sure that you:

  1. Don’t make it difficult for people to unsubscribe.

  2. Have a good balance between text and images.

  3. Have your messages be easily recognizable by your customers.

With our Drag and Drop editor, you can quickly design emails that perform well.

1. Keep the Unsubscribe link visible.

While it may seem paradoxical, the best method to ensure that your audience is engaged is to make it simple for them to opt-out. Emailing people, not email addresses, is what you do. There will be people who no longer want to receive your messages, even if you segment your audience well and deliver them content they care about. Make it simple for them to cancel.

There are two fundamental reasons to have a visible unsubscribe link:

Spam complaints. Your messages are more likely to be marked as SPAM if you make it difficult for recipients to unsubscribe. That tells the mailbox provider unequivocally that individuals do not wish to receive your emails. Your chances of being placed in the SPAM folder increase as spam complaints rise. Additionally, your ESP could decide to completely stop sending your campaigns.

Engagement score. Your overall engagement score increases if everyone on your list is genuinely interested in some sort of interaction. A 20% engagement score is achieved if 200 out of 1000 recipients click on a link in your email. Engagement would drop to 2% if you delivered the same message to 10,000 people and the number of clicks stayed the same. You get the idea. Clicks are merely one engagement indicator that mailbox providers consider when determining whether customers care about that message.

2. Don't send emails with only images.

Emails with images solely should not be sent for a variety of reasons. Among them are the following: they are not visible when photos are disabled, they download slowly when an inadequate internet connection is available, and they frequently display poorly on mobile devices. In addition, because spammers frequently attempt to hide text by using graphics, they are frequently marked as SPAM by mailbox providers. Such messages are often classified as high-risk by spam filters and placed in the SPAM folder. The same holds true for messages with little text (i.e. a very low text-to-image ratio).

3. Be instantly recognizable.

When you're going through your inbox, how quickly do you decide whether or not to read an email? In an age when we have an 8-second attention span, we take even less time to glance at an email and decide whether or not to read it. It's critical that your messages are easily identifiable so that your readers don't waste time figuring out who is sending them the message.

Using a recognizable, consistent FROM name and email address is one way to accomplish this. Not only will this help your recipients recognize you, but it will also help you build a reputation with mailbox providers. The alternative is problematic: the more you change things, the more uncertainty there is and the more difficult it is for Gmail and the company to decide whether or not an incoming message can be trusted.

It is also critical to use a clean, brand-focused, consistent design, especially for transactional emails (those are emails that you would never want your customers to flag as SPAM and not receive.) Google, for example, uses a clean, minimalistic, on-brand design for security alerts: font, colors, logo, links...everything is easily identifiable.

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