(Co-authored by: Kapeesh Manilal)
Ever since the invention of the internet, emails have been traditionally viewed on personal computers. With the introduction of mobile internet, the amount of people checking their emails on mobile devices has increased exponentially. These emails are viewed on devices with variable screen sizes and, unfortunately, often don’t look as good as they do on desktop versions.
Media queries allow the developer to code specific styles based on a device’s screen size, hence allowing users to view the same mail on their mobile’s native email client, without the email breaking.
With this ability to allow adaptable layout depending on a device’s screen size, one would think that it has then solved the problem, but the problems now lie with the devices themselves. The support for this new advancement is lacking. Though this idea would be great for device email subscribers, it would be a hit and miss in most cases. The solution to this is simple: testing, testing and more testing! We tested native mail clients, as well as email apps such as Gmail, on mobile devices.
The Power of Responsive Mobile Mailers
One of largest reasons to follow this trend, as mentioned above, is the increased growth of mobile users. Serving fluid design and optimised content for mobile devices could in fact boost readership and open-rates. There is no better time to capture the smart phone market with your mailer, especially with the increasing number of South Africans purchasing smart phones.
With this in mind, the reasons to go responsive still outweigh its challenges. We found a number of resources online that provide many tips and tricks. We then took these and tailored them to fit the specification of the Quirk mailer. One has to use resources as a guideline for what one wants to achieve and continuously improve on design until it meets unique specifications.
Responsive Mailers – Test Before You Try
The state of support for media queries on native browsers and mail clients is good, but not perfect. It will still be your call to go responsive, so we would advise the testing of your readership pool, to find out if it would be a beneficial path to follow. If yes, then we wish you the best of luck on your responsive journey. It’s a bit tough at first but once you get it, the benefits are endless!