This playbook’s objectives are to streamline your workflow and implement new design standards.
- For an introductory look at Everest’s Design & Content, please read:
- If you are a new Everest customer with no prior relationship with Validity, complete onboarding to ensure you are familiar with navigating and using Everest.
- If you were a Return Path or 250ok customer and are moving to Everest, complete your migration process.
- Ensure you have completed the Everest Basic Set Up Guide.
- To determine your device allocation and to get the most visibility into engagement performance metrics related to your content, complete the advanced setup guides.
- Everest Advanced Setup Guide 2: Sending Reputation (FBL Complaints)
- Everest Advanced Setup Guide 3: Engagement (Pixel and ESP/sending platform integration)
Important! Be sure you know the subscription allotments based on your service tier and plan according to your sending frequency and the size of your email database. You can find your subscription information by navigating to: My Everest>Account Settings>Subscription.
- Common email design challenges
- How Design & Content fits into your process
- Important metrics related to effective design
- Streamline workflows using the Everest API
- Incorporate Design & Content into your A/B testing strategy
- Implement Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI)
- Explore Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) for email
- What to do next
Common sender challenges associated with email design are:
- We want a simple way to compare designs as part of our A/B testing strategy.
- We want to implement Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI) but don't know how
- We want to explore more advanced content techniques to improve engagement
By optimizing email design using Everest’s Design & Content feature, senders see improved results with:
- Increased Open rates
- Increased Click rates
- Decreased Complaint rates
- Decreased Unsubscribe rates
- Streamlining of internal workflows
A traditional email marketing process consists of three phases: Pre-Send, In-Flight, and Monitoring. Using Design & Content within the pre-send phase helps to ensure your campaigns render properly across mobile devices and email clients.
- Inform your email campaign strategy with Everest’s Competitive Intelligence
- Plan campaign
- Select target subscriber list
- Design campaign
- Validate target subscriber list using Everest’s List Validation
- Test campaign design using Everest’s Design & Content
- A/B test design
- Send campaign to subscribers and the Everest seed list
- Send both your A and B tests to the Everest seed list
- View your campaign’s inbox placement, spam, and missing results using Everest’s Inbox Placement
- View A and B test inbox placement results
- Monitor engagement metrics using Everest’s Engagement, your ESP, or internal sending platform.
- Monitor sending reputation metrics using Everest’s Monitoring to understand the deliverability impact.
Tip: You can test your designs at any point in the pre-send process. Some design teams use the Design & Content feature to test various design ideas during the creative process or test the final design to identify potential problem areas. Be sure to plan how you use Design & Content based on your subscription allotment.
Content related engagement data is visible in the Monitoring>Engagement and Monitoring>Reputation features when using the Everest engagement pixel and integrating Everest with your ESP or sending platform.
- Open rate
- Complaint rate
Available from your ESP or internal sending platform
- Click rate
- Unsubscribe rate
If you have not started to use the Everest API, it is recommended to automate design tests to save time and for the flexibility to use and view the data according to your business needs. Developer resources required.
A/B testing leads to incremental engagement gains as you learn what content resonates best with your subscribers. Before incorporating Everest’s Design & Content into your A/B testing strategy, make sure you have allotments available.
If you want additional detail or ideas on A/B testing, please read:
While there are numerous testing options available, many senders test subject lines and call-to-actions as these testing elements take little time to change in your design template and can have a direct impact on your campaign’s effectiveness. Follow the steps below for your A/B test.
Design the test
Talk to your ESP about what A/B testing features are available. They may have built-in features that manage the A/B test process for you.
- Determine your goal
- Make it achievable but meaningful based on past results
- Create a hypothesis
- For example: We expect providing 10% off versus Free shipping will result in an open rate increase of 5%
- Design your tests
- Create the control: Your A test
- Create your variant: Your B test
- For example, with subject line:
- Get 10% off your next purchase for our back-to school sale! (A)
- Get Free Shipping on your next purchase for our back-to school sale! (B)
- Send your A and B tests to Everest’s Design & Content feature and review the results
- If testing the subject line, don’t forget to use Everest’s subject Line Previewer: Pre-send>Design & Content>Pre-Flight Checks>Subject Line Previewer
- Use Everest’s Design & Content sharing feature to notify the design team of design issues to approve the final design.
- Establish the test duration
- The longer the better but strive for a test duration of at least a week.
- If you use a testing tool that picks a winner based on the statistical relevance, a full week may not be necessary. Follow the guidelines as established by your testing tool.
- Identify your subscriber test size
- Follow the guidelines for testing size as established by your testing tool.
- If you do not use a testing tool, try testing on a statistically significant (10-20%) number of email addresses based on your total sending volume. Use a free online A/B test size calculator if needed.
- Tip: Select random email addresses for your test size to avoid introducing bias, with 80% of the emails sent as the control (A) and 20% of the emails sent as the variant (B).
- Send the A and B tests to your test subscribers
- Be sure to send both the A and B tests to your Everest seed list and monitor the inbox placement results.
- Analyze the test results
- Decide if your test results affirm your hypothesis
- Send the winning test to the rest of your target subscribers
- Compare results to your baseline metrics
After test completion:
- Create a test calendar if one is not already in place.
- If you can’t test every campaign, prioritize which campaigns you test based on the time of year most important to your business or campaigns that have a larger target segment where test results are more meaningful and impactful.
- Establish an internal communication process for pre and post-send test results.
Other design test opportunities (Optional)
Use Everest’s Design & Content for all testing needs if allotments are available.
- Testing in multiple languages
- Testing your transactional templates
- Don’t overlook transactional template design, especially if you include promotional content
BIMI is a technology specification allowing you to display your brand's logo in participating email clients. It leverages the DMARC authentication standard to help ensure your domain belongs to you instead of a spammer.
Why use BIMI?
BIMI is a new standard being adopted by many marketers in the industry to have greater control over how their logo is displayed at participating mailbox providers. By leveraging DMARC, it helps protect your brand from domain impersonation so the mailbox providers can have more trust that the content actually comes from you and not a spammer.
What's the catch?
You must implement DMARC with a 100% quarantine or reject policy. For assistance on how to move your DMARC policy to quarantine and reject, please read:
- Everest Authentication Compliance Playbook: Beginner
- Everest Authentication Compliance Playbook: Intermediate
- Everest Authentication Compliance Playbook: Advanced
You also need a Verified Mark Certificate (VMC) validating domain ownership.
- How to get a Verified Mark Certificate for BIMI
- Certified senders get a complimentary VMC for one domain through Validity's partnership with Entrust.
How to implement BIMI
Everest's BIMI Wizard
Use Everest's BIMI wizard to generate your DNS record and preview a sample message with your logo.
1. Login to Everest
2. Navigate to Pre-send>Design & Content>Pre-flight Checks>Brand Indicators (BIMI)
3. Add your domain to the pop up window and click Save
4. In the Brand Indicators section, enter your:
- Friendly from address (display name)
- Your domain
- The URL of your logo
- Make sure the image is square, svg (jpg or png will not work) and in the Tiny 1.2 format
- Use default. as your BIMI Selector
5. Click Save and view the sample message on the right side with your logo
1. Locate the Setup Instructions section
2. Provide the Host Record and DNS Text (TXT) record to your email administrator or hosting provider for BIMI implementation
3. When your BIMI record is configured for your domain, click Verify DNS Record to make sure it is set up correctly
Other helpful BIMI resources:
AMP is an advanced technology created by Google allowing subscribers to interact with dynamic content within your email. If Gmail, Yahoo!, and Mail.ru comprise a large percentage of your email list, AMP may help you enhance the user experience and increase engagement. Development resources required.
Congratulations on completing the Everest Design & Content: Advanced playbook. Incorporate Everest’s Design & Content into your email marketing process to improve your email design and increase engagement. Continue reading our other Everest playbooks to help take your email marketing program to the next level.