A plain text email is what it sounds like—no hyperlinks, images or stylized fonts.
But why would an email marketer use these emails? In today’s post, we discuss what is plain text email and why to use them. In addition, we mention some of the best plain text examples to take inspiration from.
In pochi punti:
What Is Plain Text EmailAn email (or electronic mail) is a method of exchanging communications through the internet. It is one of the most used features on the web and the number one mean...?
“A plain text email is a simple email. It only includes a text message. In addition, it contains URLs and basic fonts. It has no images or style. It resembles an email you send to your friends.”Snov.io
Such emails aren’t pretty. They contain the necessary information but don’t have any style, graphics or formatting. In fact, the links are all typed out.
They’re perfect for one-to-one correspondence. Sure, they look boring, but they’re useful.
Email marketers use tools to preview and edit the plain text format of the email. It’s wise to review the text before sending the emails so you know how it appears to the recipients.
Spam filters see the plain text alternative to make sure the email deployment is legitimate. People that need help reading emails opt for plain text versions for their screens. For instance, your customer is using Outlook that disables images. Then, plain text email is important for them to understand what the email is about.
Email marketers use such emails for a variety of reasons. Let’s look at them in the next section.
Why Use Plain Text Email?
Digital marketers use them for different reasons. Here are some of the most popular reasons:
- Prevents from getting marked as spam. Send a plain text version along with the HTML version. This decreases the chances of being flagged by spam filters.
- Improves deliverability. Apart from being marked as spam, HTML emails end up under the “Promotions” tab. This is true especially if your email contains a lot of imagery. However, since the plain text email doesn’t contain any links or images, it lands in the inbox. This happens because it is perceived as personal and not a promotional message.
- Has a wider reach. A lot of subscribers today prefer plain text emails. Therefore, they set their preference for the same. If you only send HTML versions, then you will not reach these users.
- Improves engagement with readers. People connect with a plain text email on a personal level. This happens because it doesn’t feel like a promotional email. Therefore, it increases the conversion and engagement rates.
- Better accessibility on multiple devices. Subscribers use a variety of devices to access emails. However, HTML emails for all devices may not be optimised. For instance, your emails may not be optimised for gaming devices or smartwatches. But, a plain text email can woks well on all types of devices.
- People with low bandwidth can access these emails. Not everyone has increased storage space and bandwidth. HTML emails can’t be accessed by people that have low bandwidth as they contain a lot of images and links.
Pros and Cons
Just like everything else, using these emails have its own advantages and disadvantages.
- They have a high deliverability rate. The reason is simple: they don’t get marked as spam. Therefore, they get delivered to the recipient’s inbox.
- They have fewer technical errors. They load fast since they only contain text. Therefore, you never have to worry about broken links or blocked images. In addition, they look the same on all types of devices. Therefore, these emails are excellent for people with disabilities.
- They have higher open and click rates. They get 42% more clicks because they’re more deliverable.
- They’re more personal. On average, a user receives 121 emails every day. It’s easy for your emails to get lost in the promotions tab. However, a plain text email is delivered straight to the user’s inbox. This makes the email seem personal.
- They have a bright future. Smartwatches have gained popularity because they allow you to check emails on the go. Therefore, plain text emails are a perfect solution for tech in the future.
- They can be created quickly. It saves a lot of time as designing is not required.
- They’re not aesthetically pleasing. You can’t add your logo or images to the emails. In fact, there are no formatting or colour schemes. This makes it hard for you to market your brand.
- Don’t have a CTAA CTA is a phrase or word designed to get an immediate response from the reader. As the name suggests, it's usually something that involves a precise action performed by... button. Since there are no stylish elements in your email, you can’t add CTA buttons. It takes a lot of effort to make your CTA visible.
- Low converting potential. They don’t contain any images and links. Therefore, they’re not used as sales promotional emails. In addition, they aren’t used to convincing people to buy a product or try a service. Therefore, they’re not perfect for visual offers.
How to Send Plain Text Emails
The top email marketing software and email providers use MIME to convert HTML-based emails to plain text. Then, they send both versions to your users. Depending on the preference of the user, the email client then shows them the email. You can use email marketing software such as MailsenPai to effortlessly create plain text emails.
How To Optimize a Plain Text Email
As an email marketer, you need to create emails that are scannable. Take the help of these plain text email examples to create an effective email:
- Separate sections with clear headers.
You can’t use different colours or larger text to create headers. However, you can use double asterisks (**) along with each headline with a row of dashes below. This will indicate the beginning of a new section. In addition, use numbering or octothorpes.
- Add line breaks and use whitespace wisely.
This ensures that the content looks good. In addition, whitespace allows links to be touch-friendly and clickable.
- Keep it short.
Avoid redoing your text. This will prevent your users from feeling overwhelmed. Keep the copy concise, snappy and short.
- Use bulleted lists.
Create a hierarchy by adding bullet points. Use characters like “+”, “*” or “-” to create bullets.
- Clearly define your CTAs.
Ensure that your CTA stands out. It’s difficult to do that in plain text emails but it’s not impossible. Use line breaks and text to make the email readable.
- Don’t go overboard with links.
Structure your email by embedding the most important links. Remember to use the minimum number of links required in your email.
- Have fun.
You can add emojis to HTML-based emails. But who said you can’t have some fun with plain text emails? Bring back ASCII art to create illustrations. Delight your readers by adding cool graphics to your emails.
- Test the email before sending it.
39% of organisations don’t test their emails before sending them. Your brand shouldn’t be a part of that. A/B testing allows you to optimise your emails. Therefore, always test an email before sending it to your subscribers.
Tips and Best Practices
Here are some tips and best practices to keep in mind when creating a plain text email. Whether you’re creating a plain text email yourself or using the auto-generated version from MailsenPai, it’s important to keep these things in mind.
- Review the email before sending it. Sure, auto-generated plain text emails are convenient, but, they’re not perfect. Therefore, it’s important to review and edit the email. Check for unnecessary text, extra spaces and corrupted characters.
- Run a spam test. Ensure deliverability by running a spam test. Plain text emails rarely get flagged as spam but there’s no harm in running a test.
- Make the emails scannable. The lack of proper formatting and imagery makes it hard for the reader to read the email. Increase the readability by dividing the content into sections. In addition, use clear headers and all caps to mark them.
- Use email marketing software. Create emails in different formats using email marketing software. Track the performance of each email that you send. MailsenPai’s email editor helps you send plain-text emails with an interesting copy.
Plain text emails work for all types of businesses and industries. Therefore, it’s important to understand how to create them.
Test their performance to see which email performs the best. A plain text email works best for certain types of email campaigns. Examples include order and delivery information emails.
Have you ever used a plain text email before? How do you optimize it? Tell us in the comments section below!