Newsletters are very powerful means of increasing sales and visits volume of a web store. Gathering a subscribers list is not a big task, but arranging correct email distribution in Magento is a bit more complicated. Let us review how to configure Newsletters in Magento, and some recommendations regarding subscription block design.
First of all, it is necessary to create specific newsletter parameters, this will help to control the process and verify that there are no errors when the emails are opened. For this, go to System – Configuration – Customers - Newsletters, a newsletter settings page will open where you can edit the following parameters:
- Email address: “Unsubscribe / Subscribed / Confirm subscription” - setup the address from which newsletters will be sent to the store customers.
- Configuration of “Unsubscribe / Subscribed / Confirm subscription” template. Here you can choose the necessary newsletter template and design (use drop-down list to select).
- Confirmation. This field displays a possibility to request confirmation from customers who wish to receive newsletters from your store. This is necessary to ensure that only interested people receive newsletters and not spammers of false addresses.
Before starting to send newsletters you need to create a template that will combine several qualities, including customers’ comfort, similarity to the web store style, simple design (minimalism usually attracts users’ interest), lightness of loading (which allows a newsletter load fast even on a low-speed internet connection). In order to configure this parameter go to Newsletter – Templates and choose “Add a new template”.
- A template name will not be visible to customers but it is necessary for an administrator to manage the templates;
- A theme will be visible in the newsletter body so you need to pay specific attention to this point, because customers should not only receive a newsletter, they should want to open it;
- ‘Sender name’ field shows on whose behalf this newsletter is sent. You can specify your name or just the name of your store;
- ‘Sender email address’ field is filled by the same principle, it will be visible in the newsletter and a user can reply to that address if necessary, so it is better to specify a company address.
- Write the letter code into the template. It can be written in HTML format. If you wish to include a static block in your letter, use this code:
All newly created templates will mandatory have an automatic option to ‘Unsubscribe’ in the newsletter body, but you can delete that option if you wish. You may convert this code without tags in order to change the text and then change it back to HTML format. In order to preview the newsletter in the way it will be sent to customers, click ‘View template’ button.
After all changes are made do not forget to save the changes. If you click ‘Save as’ you will be able to duplicate the template, e.g. in order to change the colors or a theme for the next newsletter, this will save you time for creation of a new template.
Now you need to setup the order of newsletters sending, go to Newsletter – Templates:
- Locate the necessary template in the list and then choose “Newsletter Queue” point in front of it;
- Start Date queue – this option allows configuration of an automatic newsletter sending but before that you need to verify that the time on your computer is equal to the server time. If the newsletter should be sent immediately, leave this field empty;
- In ‘Subscribers’ section you need to specify the subscribers of which store view are going to receive the letter, in order to avoid filling your customers’ mailboxes with the information they do not need;
- Theme (have a look at Magento themes) – it is already set in the template but you can change it here;
- Name, Email and Message are filled automatically with the information provided by the user during their registration.
Now save the newsletter and refresh the system. Remember that Magento will not send 1000 emails at once in order to avoid server overload, they will be sent by parts during a certain time period, e.g. 100 emails each 15 or 20 minutes.
Newsletter design recommendations
- Analyze the colors of the text font, background and theme, text size. They must not be too bright or stress the eyes;
- Many webmasters advise using HTML code for newsletters as it is better accepted by mail services and has better usability;
- Do not send newsletters every day, group your products or articles in one newsletter for a week or a few days, then you will not annoy your customers;
- It is mandatory to check the letter for grammatical mistakes as this strongly affects the store reputation and customers’ attitude.
If you have any additional questions please feel free to contact our GoMage specialists.