When was the last time you tested your email campaign to measure the spam score and/or check cross-browser visibility & compatibility? I’m hoping your answer is “every campaign” and really dread hearing “what do you mean test the campaign?”. At minimum you should test your first few campaigns to make sure the person formatting them is doing it correctly.
One of the biggest mistakes when previewing your campaign is to rely on your browser. Email programs have much stricter rules for HTML and CSS so what may work in Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer and other browsers will not display the same when the email is actually sent and received.
There are a few nifty little services out there you can use to browser test your emails. The following are the ones I recommend to my clients:
This is a built-in feature for MailChimp members so for those using the service you don’t need to go elsewhere. If you have a paid account (monthly or credits) you get 25 tests per week. For those using the free version you can purchase a test for $3 each. >> To learn more about Inbox Inspection, click here.
Email on Acid
This service provides previews in 32 email programs, 6 popular browsers and 8 operating systems to see what your email campaign will look like with the images turned on or disabled. >> To learn more about Email on Acid, click here.
A popular choice by many companies, this email testing service provides reports for 30+ email programs including smartphones. If you would like to see the service in action, try the free email preview. >> To learn more about Litmus, click here.
Do It Yourself (DIY) Testing
For those of you who choose not to use a service and want to test on your own, I suggest you create test account with the following and send campaigns to each one before you do the actual mailing:
Make sure to log in to each of your test accounts to cross check them. What ever you do, don’t rely on just one email program aka you get lazy. You need verify that all of the following is exactly the same (or very close) in all of the email programs.
Font sizes and colors
Images are showing up and not breaking apart
Links work (make sure you click on all of them)
Alignment and spacing
If all of the emails look similar (they will all vary a bit), then you’re ready for send it out.
What do you use for your campaign testing? Have you used multiple services and if so, what is your favorite?