6 min read

Email Design As The One Image | Pros and Cons of Using This Method

Written by Andriy Boychuk
6 min read
Table of Contents

    In this article, I am going to be discussing the pros and cons of using one image as the whole email design and template. From experience and stats we have seen, your emails are likely to be blocked because it is an image and also if it does get through it won’t go to their primary folder. Emails are meant to be easy to read and have a variety to keep people reading further, if people see an image, they are likely to look but not pay close attention to it.

    It is unlikely, you will get many clicks and people coming across your website or the product page. I will show an example of what this looks like and the types of ones some brands use, individual photos and then 4 photos on 1 long one.

    I will share the benefits of one image design emails too, so it is fair and you understand the positives and negatives.

    Hi, this is Andriy, the founder of Flowium Marketing Agency. In this article, I would like to explain why you should not use one image on the entire email. There are some pros and cons to using this, but there is more cons than pros.

    First of all, if you use one image as an email design, like complete image, according to MailChimp and actually to our own experience, your email more likely to be blocked by email provider, as well as filter as promo email.

    And second stats, according to MailChimp, your bounce rate might be increased by 23 percent if you are sending this kind of emails. And actually, it defeats the purpose of the entire email if you design it as a one image.

    First of all, let me show you from Victoria’s Secret the email, how they do it, and then I will explain you what is good about it and what is bad about it.

    Here’s the email from Victoria secret, and how do I know if it’s an image? You can click, hold, and pull. You see? This is one image, this is another image, this is another image, and this is another image, and so forth.

    email design as the one image pros and cons of using this method

    There’s even some brands who don’t even cut their images. They just do it as a humongous one email. Victoria’s Secret did it little bit better, but still, we strongly recommend not to repeat, because it’s very bad practice.

    So, what is the benefit of doing email design as a one image? The biggest benefit is it’s much cheaper and more efficient to design this kind of email versus a responsive email.

    Why? Because there’s not many email designers, but there are a lot of graphic designers who are able to design pretty pictures in Illustrator or Photoshop, but they do not understand the email design part. It’s not hard for them to learn it, but if they don’t have that knowledge, it’s a niche design skill. So it’s much cheaper and easier to find the talent to design one image email.

    And the last thing is to be on brand. If you have custom fonts or special elements that you constantly use in your designs, it’s easier to include in those one image design emails. Why? Because you do whatever you need to do in Photoshop. You export as JPEG and you put it in your email marketing software and send it out to your customers.

    Those three things, the pros: cheaper, easier to find talent, and your custom brand, fonts, or things you can include in your design. However, on the other hand, there’s a lot of downside to using this and we strongly recommend not to do it.

    We have another video where you can check how to take this one image design and in Humanis, redo it as a responsive design. Just type in YouTube responsive email design, and our video will be the first, second or third. And check the video. It’s short, like 12 minutes or less, and you can learn how to take your one image design email converted to responsive.

    Okay, so what is the downside of doing this as a one image design email and send it out to your customers? The biggest one, higher chance to get into spam. Almost 100 percent chance you will end up in a promo folder. Increased bounce rate, according to MailChimp, up to 23 percent, which is a lot.

    Other things, when you design one design email, you are losing that option to have multiple CTAs in your email. We typically recommend to have one CTA per email. It should be fine with you, but the option, maybe in the photo, you have like, “Hey, check us on YouTube. Check us on Instagram.”

    You are not having that availability, because when you do one image, you are able to include one link and you are not sure where people are clicking. Did they click on the top of the email or the bottom of the email? Because if they click on the top of the email, it’s the same, because it’s a one image. When you have a combination of images, text, you are able to find out where they clicked.

    Another thing is accessibility. Some people have their images off or maybe have a slower internet. Recently, I went to Toronto, and on airplane, I was checking some of my emails with my wifi turned off, and a lot of emails, and especially Victoria’s Secret’s email show up like this.

    I actually recorded a video on TikTok and I shared how you should not do those kind of emails. By the way, if you are on TikTok, we are sharing daily tips about email marketing and showing what to do or not to do in emails.

    email design as the one image pros and cons of using this method

    I hope I convinced you not to do it, not to design emails as a one image. If you believe I’m wrong or you want to support me, please leave comments below. I would like to learn more about what you think. Thank you.

    Email campaign creation is a long and complicated process. The key is to streamline it – so you know exactly what you need to do at each stage. We have a Campaign checklist, where we share step-by-step instructions on how to create your campaigns in a more efficient way.


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