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Using testing services

From: Effective HTML Email and Newsletters

Video: Using testing services

Once your HTML email tests out fine with a few web browsers, the next step is to use an online testing service. We'll look at MailChimp's Inbox Inspection Service. While the next chapter shows the complete campaign creation process, here we will focus on the last step: testing how the email displays in different email software. We'll start from the MailChimp dashboard. Click Campaign. Under Hansel & Petal, we'll click Edit to get the campaign details.

Using testing services

Once your HTML email tests out fine with a few web browsers, the next step is to use an online testing service. We'll look at MailChimp's Inbox Inspection Service. While the next chapter shows the complete campaign creation process, here we will focus on the last step: testing how the email displays in different email software. We'll start from the MailChimp dashboard. Click Campaign. Under Hansel & Petal, we'll click Edit to get the campaign details.

At the bottom of the Campaign details page is they run inbox inspection. Click the gray run inbox inspection button. Clicking the run inspection button displays this results page. Click the reports dashboard link. Then click the View Report button next to your campaign. MailChimp's Inbox Inspection Service, like similar services, takes anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours to run the complete suite of tests.

These tests will show you how your email displays in actual email software. For example, let's look at Outlook 2003. All the elements appear to be here. For example, the header and footer display fine. The colors for the heading, the tagline, the prices, the product names, and the offer code all display fine. All the images have their borders around them. We can say that in Outlook 2003 this HTML email will look fine.

Next, let's looked at Outlook 2007. Here, the header image and footer image also display fine. The heading color, the tagline color and the offer code color also display fine. However, the spacing between the top navigation links would need to be adjusted. In addition, the background color for the content area did not display properly. So we know that if we care about Outlook 2007, we will need to go in, tweak our code, and come back and run the Inbox Inspection Service again to confirm that our changes work.

Let's look at one more difficult email software. Gmail often displays email in different ways than you might intend. In this case, however, the header displays fine, the footer displays fine, the navigation link spacing is fine, and the colors for the heading, tagline, product names, prices, and offer code at the bottom all display fine, and every image has a border. So we know that this HTML email will look fine in Gmail.

Online testing services are an inexpensive way to test thoroughly how your HTML email will display in many different kinds of HTML email software. It's an important step to take before you send any email. Let me also add that there are other testing services. For example, litmus.com, browsercam.com, and campaignmonitor all provide services to test how your HTML email will display in a variety of email software. Whatever service you choose, testing is a critical step to ensure your email displays well for all of your readers.

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This video is part of

Image for Effective HTML Email and Newsletters
Effective HTML Email and Newsletters

55 video lessons · 21697 viewers

Tim Slavin
Author

 
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  1. 2m 25s
    1. Welcome
      1m 1s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 24s
  2. 13m 12s
    1. Understanding differences between HTML email and web pages
      1m 21s
    2. Seeing how HTML email displays in different email programs
      3m 27s
    3. Finding Acid tests and compatibility checklists
      2m 35s
    4. Understanding MIME types: HTML vs plain text
      4m 3s
    5. Exploring the future of HTML email
      1m 46s
  3. 15m 12s
    1. Defining spam
      2m 6s
    2. Examining legal issues with permission-based email
      1m 33s
    3. Planning email campaigns
      1m 36s
    4. Creating content for email campaigns
      2m 34s
    5. Understanding design constraints of HTML email
      1m 53s
    6. Designing effective HTML email
      2m 5s
    7. Building email address lists
      3m 25s
  4. 7m 28s
    1. Choosing tools for coding HTML email
      1m 27s
    2. Coding email versus coding web pages
      1m 14s
    3. Preventing problems with email coding
      2m 49s
    4. Understanding the ideal coding process
      1m 58s
  5. 17m 27s
    1. Planning
      1m 8s
    2. Coding HTML tables
      4m 38s
    3. Adding content
      4m 49s
    4. Adding inline CSS
      6m 52s
  6. 10m 44s
    1. Planning
      43s
    2. Coding HTML tables
      2m 41s
    3. Adding content
      3m 39s
    4. Adding inline CSS
      3m 41s
  7. 13m 13s
    1. Planning
      1m 13s
    2. Coding HTML tables
      3m 4s
    3. Adding content
      2m 37s
    4. Adding images
      1m 9s
    5. Adding inline CSS
      5m 10s
  8. 7m 32s
    1. Designing a plain text email
      4m 49s
    2. Designing a plain text email from an HTML email
      2m 43s
  9. 20m 45s
    1. Automating HTML email creation
      2m 5s
    2. Automating HTML email by category
      1m 6s
    3. Automating HTML email with WordPress
      5m 32s
    4. Automating HTML email with ExpressionEngine
      4m 27s
    5. Automating HTML email with FeedBurner from an RSS feed
      4m 27s
    6. Automating HTML email with FeedBlitz from an RSS feed
      3m 8s
  10. 6m 42s
    1. Deciding when and how to test email
      3m 18s
    2. Using testing services
      3m 24s
  11. 13m 56s
    1. Outsourcing your email campaign
      56s
    2. Sending email with MailChimp
      2m 40s
    3. Sending email with Campaign Monitor
      1m 51s
    4. Sending email with Constant Contact
      2m 20s
    5. Sending email with iContact
      2m 9s
    6. Sending email with VerticalResponse
      1m 52s
    7. Sending email with canned templates
      2m 8s
  12. 14m 34s
    1. Solving layout and spacing problems
      2m 50s
    2. Solving image problems
      3m 12s
    3. Solving Gmail display problems
      2m 19s
    4. Solving Lotus Notes display problems
      1m 55s
    5. Solving Outlook 2007/2010 display problems
      2m 40s
    6. Adding video to email
      1m 38s
  13. 1m 36s
    1. Next steps
      1m 36s

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