Build an HTML Email Template From Scratch

Build an HTML Email Template From Scratch


Standard HTML E mail Templates on Envato Parts

In case you’re on the lookout for a ready-made, skilled answer, seize considered one of our in style HTML electronic mail templates on Envato Parts. Now we have lots of of responsive choices all included along with your Parts membership, with easy-to-customize options to get you began.

Envato Parts is free for 7 days, no dedication. In case you do not like it, cancel any time throughout your free trial and also you received’t be charged.

popular HTML email templates on Envato Elementspopular HTML email templates on Envato Elementspopular HTML email templates on Envato Elements
Standard HTML electronic mail templates on Envato Parts

Not what you’re on the lookout for? No downside, this tutorial will educate you the best way to construct your individual!

“The earlier you cease preventing the quirks of electronic mail, the earlier you should use them to your benefit.” – Caity G. O’Connor

The HTML E mail Template We’re Constructing

Right here’s the HTML electronic mail we’ll be constructing, be at liberty to fork the pen and use it your self. Keep in mind that after we’re viewing this template by way of an internet browser we’re a lot much less more likely to run into issues than with electronic mail shoppers.

1. Start Your HTML E mail Doc

To start with, it’s price mentioning the place I pulled a few of the assets from.

Now, as we mentioned within the earlier tutorial, you’ll want to start your HTML electronic mail template with an HTML doctype, and the proper language on your subscribers. On this case we’re going to use the HTML5 doctype, set our language to English with <html lang="en">, and in addition embody the XML and Microsoft Workplace namespaces (the xmlns bits). We’re going to want these a number of strains down, as I will clarify.

There are fairly a number of issues within the code above, but it surely’s the naked minimal you could guarantee your remaining electronic mail renders fantastically all over the place.

Firstly, we’ve got a number of meta tags to make sure the precise textual content encoding, viewport scaling throughout completely different cell gadgets, and one to cease Apple from adjusting the scale in an odd manner of their mail apps.

Beneath the <title></title> tag you may see some code between <!--[if mso]> and <![endif]-->. Putting code inside these two tags signifies that solely Microsoft Outlook on Home windows will apply it (mso = ‘Microsoft Outlook’). And in there, we’ve got a small quantity of XML that can be sure that PNG photographs show on the proper dimension in Outlook on Home windows. The xlmns settings that we put within the html tag ensures this code will get interpreted correctly.

Beneath that, we’ve got a model tag with simply a few CSS guidelines. The primary units the font for all our essential parts, and that is for the advantage of Gmail webmail, which can override our font settings except we embody this. If you find yourself altering your fonts later, remember to make the change right here too.

Lastly, we’re together with desk, td {border:2px stable #000000 !essential;} which can draw a border on the whole lot. That is purely in order that we will see what we’re doing as we construct, and we’ll take away it on the finish.

With that sorted, we will begin constructing the remainder of the construction.

2. Create the Physique and Most important Desk

First, we’ll add an total construction for our electronic mail, beginning with a <physique> tag. Add the code beneath straight beneath the </head> tag:

You may see the margin and padding on the physique tag are set to zero to keep away from any sudden house.

We’ve additionally added a desk with a width of 100%. This acts as a real physique tag for our electronic mail, as a result of the physique tag is typically eliminated by electronic mail shoppers. Apply any ‘physique’ background color that you simply wish to this desk tag.

All our tables shall be set to function="presentation". This makes them extra accessible, because it tells display screen readers to deal with it as a visible desk, not an information desk.

Now we have set border-collapse to collapse, and each border and border-spacing to zero to keep away from any sudden house within the desk.

You may discover we’re utilizing <td align="heart">, and if you happen to’re already acquainted with HTML you may be questioning why, since align is definitely a deprecated HTML property. We use it as a result of electronic mail shoppers differ so broadly of their stage of CSS help, and sometimes we nonetheless want to make use of deprecated HTML to make sure the whole lot shows correctly all over the place. On this occasion, it’s as a result of Outlook for Home windows doesn’t obey margin:0 auto; in CSS to heart issues.

Lastly, be sure you all the time set the padding in your desk cells to zero within the inline kinds, e.g. <td model="padding:0;">, in any other case electronic mail shoppers will all add their very own quantity of padding. Once we do add padding ourselves, we will alter this worth, but when there isn’t any padding to be utilized to any of the edges, you should explicitly set it to zero. 

Our first HTML email layout sectionOur first HTML email layout sectionOur first HTML email layout section

A Be aware on Utilizing CSS Padding Shorthand

When utilizing CSS padding on desk cells, you possibly can reliably write it 3 ways. Both specify one worth, e.g. padding:20px which can apply 20 pixels of padding to each aspect of your cell (high, proper, backside and left), or specify padding in pairs, i.e. padding: 10px 20px, which can add 10 pixels padding to each high and backside, plus 20 pixels to each left and proper. If neither of these are appropriate, you must declare each aspect, i.e. padding: 10px 10px 0 5px. In all circumstances you should set every worth, even when a few of them are zero. Moreover, solely specifying three values can have unpredictable outcomes throughout electronic mail shoppers. 

Padding works reliably on desk cells in all electronic mail shoppers, however if you’re having hassle with padding, there isn’t any have to resort to spacer GIFs. In a pinch you should use spacer divs or spacer cells. Simply embody a non-breaking house character (&nbsp;) inside, set an identical top and line top, and remember to embody mso-line-height-rule:precisely which can guarantee Microsoft Outlook for Home windows renders it on the pixel-perfect dimension. (If you’re creating horizontal house, you could specify a width as an alternative of top, and will have to additionally add font-size:0;.) Right here is an instance or a spacer cell inside a row:

And here’s a spacer div:

Including the Most important Desk

Now let’s place a desk of 602 pixels huge contained in the container desk.

600 pixels is a secure most width on your emails to show comfortably inside most desktop and webmail shoppers on most display screen resolutions, and we’re including 2 pixels so we will have a 1 pixel border across the exterior, which provides a pixel on both aspect.

We’ll substitute our little ‘Hi there!’ greeting with this desk. 

Nice! Now we’ve got our outer desk, and our essential content material desk sitting inside, prepared for some rows of content material.

The container table for our HTML email layoutThe container table for our HTML email layoutThe container table for our HTML email layout

3. Create the HTML E mail Template Construction and Header

In our electronic mail design we will see that the format is split into a number of logical sections, so we’ll create a row for every.

Let’s duplicate the one row within the final desk we added in order that we’ve got three in complete, by copying the whole lot between (and together with) the <tr> and </tr> and pasting it two instances beneath.

I’ve modified the ‘Hi there!’ textual content to learn Row 1, Row 2 and Row 3 so it ought to now appear like this:

Extra rows in our HTML email layoutExtra rows in our HTML email layoutExtra rows in our HTML email layout

Now we’ll color them in accordance with the design by including a background CSS property to the model tag. At all times bear in mind to make use of the total six characters of a hexadecimal code like #ffffff, as three character shorthand like #fff received’t all the time work in all electronic mail shoppers.

Colored rowsColored rowsColored rows

Okay, subsequent up in our electronic mail design we’re going to give attention to Row 1. On the cell, let’s change the padding from 0 to 40px 0 30px 0. Then contained in the cell we’ll insert our picture:

At all times specify the width of your photographs utilizing the HTML width attribute relatively than CSS, e.g. width="300" as seen above, relatively than model="width:300px;". In case you do not, Microsoft Outlook for Home windows will show your picture at its bodily dimension. 

Now we have additionally set the picture top to auto to keep away from any squishing, and show to block, which prevents gaps from showing beneath it in some electronic mail shoppers.

Lastly, in case your picture incorporates essential data that is not talked about in your electronic mail’s textual content, remember to add an outline of it to the alt tag in order that it is going to be introduced by display screen readers to these utilizing them.

Be aware: Pictures do not all the time load and alt textual content isn’t all the time visually displayed as a fallback, so any essential data ought to all the time be included as stay textual content in your electronic mail relatively than being embedded in a picture.

And that’s our HTML header finished!

The html email header along with imageThe html email header along with imageThe html email header along with image

4. Create the Content material Space

Shifting on from the header, let’s now focus on our HTML electronic mail’s content material space. First off, we’ll add some padding to the Row 2’s cell in order that the desk inside has some house round it, as per our design, in order that it now appears like this:

Added padding to the middle cellAdded padding to the middle cellAdded padding to the middle cell
Added padding to the center cell

Now we’ll substitute the ‘Row 2’ textual content with one other desk to nest our essential content material inside. When constructing HTML electronic mail utilizing tables, we have to nest them as a result of colspan and rowspan should not broadly supported throughout electronic mail shoppers.

We’ve set the width of this desk to 100%. It’s good apply to make use of proportion widths relatively than utilizing a pixel worth wherever doable as a result of it will enable you additional down the observe if you wish to make your electronic mail responsive, and even if you happen to merely want to regulate the width of your electronic mail afterward. Share widths will routinely adapt to a brand new container dimension, whereas pixel widths would all must be individually up to date.

Two nested rows for our main contentTwo nested rows for our main contentTwo nested rows for our main content
Two nested rows for our essential content material

Now we’ll add our content material to the highest row, which is a heading, a paragraph of textual content, and a remaining paragraph with a hyperlink inside. At this stage, we aren’t including any styling in any respect to those parts.

Added content and padding to the top rowAdded content and padding to the top rowAdded content and padding to the top row

Substitute the ‘Row 1’ textual content with the next:

Subsequent we’re going so as to add our two columns of content material to Row 2. As a result of we wish a spot in between these two cells, we’ll create a three-column desk with an empty cell between the 2 outer columns. There are a number of methods to create this format, however this one is probably the most dependable for our functions.

As a lot as I like to stay to percentages, when you may have content material that could be a particular dimension, it may be difficult to transform it to a proportion (on this instance, the columns could be 48.1% which might turn out to be complicated). For that reason, since our two photographs are 260px huge, we’ll create columns which might be additionally 260px huge, with a 20px margin cell within the center. (This can complete 540px, which is the 600px width of our desk minus the padding of 30px on both aspect.) You should definitely zero your font-size and line-height and add a non-breaking house character &nbsp; within the center cell.

We’ll additionally set the vertical-align to high for each cells in order that they are going to vertically align to the highest, even when one column has extra textual content than the opposite. The default vertical alignment is center.

Substitute ‘Row 2’ with this desk:

Two columns to content row twoTwo columns to content row twoTwo columns to content row two

Now let’s add our photographs and content material to these columns. Margins are very nicely supported on <p> tags throughout all electronic mail shoppers, so we are going to wrap our textual content and pictures in <p> tags and alter the spacing between them utilizing margin later after we add all our textual content styling.

Let’s add content material to Columns 1 and a couple of in order that the entire desk now appears like this:

Right here we’ve set the width of the photographs utilizing the HTML width attribute once more, identical to we did after we inserted the header picture.

Images in the columnsImages in the columnsImages in the columns
Pictures within the columns

5. Type the E mail Template Footer

Now we’ll add our padding to the footer row.

Padding to the footer rowPadding to the footer rowPadding to the footer row
Padding to the footer row

Inside that cell, we’ll substitute the ‘Row 3’ textual content with one other desk to get two columns, every 50% huge, with the left set to align="left" and proper to align="proper" in order that the content material in every shall be pinned to these sides and provides us a balanced electronic mail design.

Two columns for the footerTwo columns for the footerTwo columns for the footer
Two columns for the footer

Substitute ‘Left Column’ with a paragraph of textual content:

We’ll create one other little desk for our social media icons, because it’s the easiest way to get probably the most exact spacing that renders correctly all over the place. Substitute the ‘Proper Column’ textual content with the desk beneath.

You may discover we aren’t specifying a desk width, and that is in order that the width of the desk shall be decided by the cells inside. They’re every 38px huge (the width of our icons) plus 10px padding on the left.

Table for social media iconsTable for social media iconsTable for social media icons
Desk for social media icons

And there we’ve got it; our HTML electronic mail template format is full!

6. Type the Textual content

Styling the textual content inside our HTML electronic mail template is a very essential step. First, let’s take a look at the highest row of content material with our h1 and introductory textual content. 

Vital Be aware when utilizing Paragraph and Heading Tags

When utilizing paragraph and heading tags (p, h1, h2, and so forth.) you should specify your high and backside margin settings, in any other case every electronic mail consumer will apply their very own wildly completely different default margins to those parts. You additionally want to ensure your high and backside margins are set to zero if you do not need any in any respect, during which case you’d set your heading to margin:0;. In case you solely desire a backside margin, you must nonetheless set the highest margin to zero, e.g. margin:0 0 10px 0;

With that in thoughts, we’ll set our desired margins on all our tags, and we additionally wish to set the textual content color to be #153643, which we will apply to the cell, as the whole lot inside will inherit that color. After these modifications, the entire cell appears like this:

You may discover above that we’ve got additionally set the font-family on each particular person h1 and p ingredient, and also you may be questioning why we will not simply set this on the physique or desk tag. It’s because some webmail shoppers will override your font if you happen to do not set them inline on every paragraph or heading ingredient. There are different concerns and approaches to this difficulty, however for simplicity’s sake and to make sure our electronic mail renders completely all over the place at this stage, we are going to set it inline on every ingredient.

Now, transferring right down to our two-column space, add the shade to every of the 260px huge cells in order that they each appear like this:

As above, we’ll add some textual content styling and margins to our paragraphs and hyperlinks, and set a base font dimension to the complete desk. All collectively, the desk now appears like this:

Lastly, we’ll model the footer. Firstly, we’ll add some font styling to the primary footer desk, inside our crimson footer cell with the 30px padding, in order that it now reads:

Within the left column of this desk, we will replace our paragraph and hyperlink to incorporate model and color:

And on our social media icons, we’ll model every hyperlink to be white, in order that if the photographs do not load, any alt textual content shall be seen on the crimson background. Alter every hyperlink in order that they appear like this:


Almost thereAlmost thereAlmost there
Nearly there!

And there we’ve got it! Every thing is in.

7. Run Some Checks

At this level, it is a good suggestion to run your HTML code by way of an electronic mail testing service like Litmus, or E mail on Acid. Leaving the borders on all of the tables and cells may be useful to see what’s taking place in every electronic mail consumer. (Relying on how you might be testing your electronic mail, you would possibly have to remotely host your photographs first, and insert the total distant URLs for every picture into your code. Seek advice from your testing service’s web site to discover ways to check your HTML.)

Listed here are a few of my check outcomes from E mail on Acid:

Now it is time to flip off the borders and see the e-mail design wanting stunning. Within the model tag within the head, take away the road that reads:

Borders turned offBorders turned offBorders turned off
Borders turned off

And that’s it! 

You’ve Created a Easy HTML E mail!

Earlier than we name it a day, when you’ve got used any feedback in your CSS within the head of your file for any purpose, do away with them. Some electronic mail shoppers can choke on CSS feedback so it’s wisest to not embody them.

Now is an efficient time to do a remaining check with Litmus, or E mail on Acid, after which your HTML electronic mail is able to ship!

Obtain E mail Templates

In case you want extra choices, then considered one of our responsive electronic mail templates could also be simply what you want. Subscribe to Envato Parts and also you’ll be given limitless entry to lots of of customizable electronic mail templates, in addition to inventory images, icons, graphics, and plenty of different inventive belongings on your tasks.

Study Extra About HTML E mail

To take what you’ve discovered to the subsequent stage! Take a look at our Mastering HTML E mail studying information for extra tutorials on HTML electronic mail templates, electronic mail design, coding responsive electronic mail, accessibility, advertising and marketing, transactional electronic mail, electronic mail service suppliers (ESPs), improvement workflow suggestions, and extra!


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