188 billion emails are sent each day, with most of these being from businesses. Email is so significant, it accounts for more than 75% of internet activity, and exceeds all forms of social media, Google searches and web browsing combined!
The team at Crossware deal with email design on a daily basis. Not only do we sell the popular Crossware Mail Signature product as part of our day to day work, we’re often helping marketing departments in large organizations to configure and design their sign-off. Here are the trends that we’re seeing:
1. Letterhead is back!
Remember the old days of printed business stationary? We’re seeing a the return of the letterhead, with organizations choosing to add a ‘header’ to their business emails. The top of the email is the first thing a user sees when they open an email, so this is the logical place to position your company logo. If you have a recognizable brand and logo, you’re more likely to get a recipient to read your message if you place your brand at the very top.
2. Think smaller!
Email users are no longer using regular email clients such as Lotus Notes and Outlook. The massive shift to smartphone use has meant the number of pixels in the typical inbox has fallen from 600+ pixels down to the de-facto standard offered by the iphone of 300 pixels. Whatever design you come up with for an email header or signature make sure it scales down for a small screen.
3. Emails made social!
Social media is everywhere. The big problem with social media is that you are communicating to no-one unless you have followers. So you need to take every available opportunity to promote your organizations social presence – be it on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest – this means placing those social chiclets (icons) on your webpages.
4. Smarter legal compliance
It is a fact of life that many organizations need disclaimers and legal disclosures on the footers of emails. Many server platforms include a simple disclaimer or trailer function that stamp a block of text to the end of emails. The problem is that you end up with a thread containing 10 legal disclaimers at the bottom of the page! We get a lot of requests from organizations wanting to have legal disclaimers inserted at the right point – after the text you’ve typed, and before the forwarded or replied message. Oh and make the font smaller and choose a paler colour to make it less prominent than your branding.
5. Show us your mugshot!
The growth of facebook and linkedin has resulted in posts on the internet being accompanied with a photo. We’re seeing a trend in email signature block design where personal information is accompanied by a photo. So if you want to be cutting edge, get the camera out, and get snapping!
6. QR Codes
QR codes are popping up everywhere. In most shop windows you’ll see them, and I’ve even seen a QR code printed to take up the entire back of a truck! We’re seeing a lot of companies asking about adding QR Codes to emails. I’m not convinced that QR codes have anything special to add in an email… we already have Vcards and URLs… however QR codes seem to have a novelty factor right now.