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Use Images In Email to Increase Online Registration!

EMailEmail marketing is still one of the best ways to encourage people to register online for your conference or event. When used properly images can greatly complement your message and improve the success of your effort. However, when used incorrectly an image can actually destroy your hard work!

Still, images sell and they can improve your registration conversion rates. It’s important to remember that today’s Internet readers scan and are very visual. A good image can be the difference between someone reading your Email or throwing it in the trash. If you follow some good practices, you are more likely to get your message read and, hopefully, converted into a registration.


  • The first thing to remember is that images are, by default, blocked by most Email clients. In general the reader will see a message like “Display Images” that they will need to click on in order to see your image.

  • Following this, you need to make a compelling subject line, headline and introductory message to entice the reader to view the entire message.

  • Here is the key – NEVER MAKE THE IMAGE THE MESSAGE! This cannot be emphasized enough. If you make the image your message, the reader will not initially see your message (because images are turned off) and so will be more likely to just trash it. For reasons mentioned in the second point, you also don’t want to use images for key points like headlines. Use basic text formatting like bolding and increased font sizes for these points of emphasis.

  • Similarly, you should not use images for hyperlinks.

  • Alt or “Title” text will appear if the mouse hovers over an image, displayed or not. Consequently, you should always set descriptive text with your important images.

  • Don not use images as background or use image maps. Many Email clients will not display or handle these properly.

  • Typically the tools for measuring “open rates” of your Emails rely on a small transparent image that is being served. In most cases the tool you use to create your Email will use this technique for tracking opens. So even if you do not use images in your message, it is likely there is an image embedded in it and the “Display Images” message will appear.

  • You should have a version of your message on your website, with images in their full glory. If you have a message like “Can’t See Images?” which links to your website, this will also indicate to the reader that your message has images and will make it more likely that he or she will display them on the Email client.

  • Images should be few and used in the fashion described so far – as a complement to the main message. Emails with too many images may be treated as Spam by some filters.

  • Images also should be small (we like to keep them under 50K). Large images may also result in the Email being flagged as Spam by some filters.

  • Images that use a lot of visual space should be displayed below your initial headline and message. This ensures that your main text gets shown in preview panes and without scrolling.

  • This may be hard to believe, but over 40% of all Emails are read on a mobile device. This provides another huge reason to limit the use of images in Emails and to keep them small.

  • Always test your images by sending to yourself and others. If possible, read on multiple devices (like laptop and smartphone) to make sure it is readable and high quality. Make sure you also to avoid the Four Huge Email Marketing Mistakes. Do not send out your Email blast without testing first and reviewing all the important elements.