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6 Major Pitfalls of Image-Heavy Emails

Lynette Rambo | January 26, 2016 

Before you get a little too image-happy in your email designs, consider these 6 pitfalls of going pixel overboard.

Size Matters

That is … the amount, size, and file size of images you use in your emails can make or break your email results. Designers and marketers, who tend to love beautiful, image-heavy emails, often don’t realize the hidden pitfalls of getting image happy.

Here are some of the performance-draining pitfalls you may encounter with image-only emails.

Image-only emails are more apt to trigger spam filters.

Because spam filters can’t read images, spammers often send image-only emails in an attempt to trick the filters. To counteract that, filters have gotten very strict about the image-to-text ratio they find favorable.

Preview Text Won’t Show Up.

Preview text – or, the Preheader – usually pulls from the first line of text in your email. If the email is image-only, that text will most likely be the URL source of the image. The preheader represents extremely valuable real estate and can mean the difference between an email being opened or ignored.

The email recipient will not be able to search his or her inbox for keywords when trying to find your email later.

With an image-only email, text keywords may not be there. And, how much time are readers really willing to spend searching for an older email without being able to reference keywords?

Image-only emails often don’t render well on mobile devices.

An image that re-sizes for mobile has a fraction of the screen size afforded to desktop. That means text that has been embedded into the image shrinks with it and may be hard to read.
The last thing we want is for our reader to have to pinch and expand the email in order to see it.

Image-only slows down email open times.

Once an email is opened, you probably only have 5 to 8 seconds to actually get the recipient to read it. So, make sure your text-to-image ratio is sufficient and that your images have been optimized for email and download quickly.

Have Your Cake and Eat It, too!

We LOVE images here at ListEngage – just in balance.  Our expert designers create beautiful emails every day that not only render well across platforms but nicely balance images with text to get the message across. Contact us and let’s work on some designs together!

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Lynette Rambo

Lynette Rambo | Marketing Consultant

Lynette Rambo is a Certified Email Marketing Specialist and a Marketing Consultant for the Salesforce Marketing Cloud. She has over 20 years of marketing, communications, design, and public relations experience for both small businesses and larger corporations. As a Marketing Consultant for ListEngage, Lynette consults clients on email marketing best practices, strategic planning, content creation, campaign management, and provides training and demos on the Marketing Cloud. She also works with the Salesforce CRM and connecting Sales and Marketing initiatives. You can contact Lynette at