visuals in email marketing

The Power of Visuals in Email Marketing and How to Use Them Effectively

In a world where attention spans are shorter than ever, email marketers are constantly looking for ways to captivate their audience. Enter the power of visuals in email marketing. Visual content has the ability to grab attention, convey information quickly, and leave a lasting impression.

From eye-catching images to engaging infographics, incorporating visuals into your email marketing strategy can significantly boost your campaigns’ effectiveness. Not only do visuals make your emails stand out in a cluttered inbox, but they also enhance the overall user experience.

But how can you use visuals effectively in your email marketing? It’s not just about slapping a random image into your emails. It’s about strategically choosing visuals that align with your brand voice and message. Whether you’re aiming for a professional and sleek look or a fun and playful vibe, selecting visuals that resonate with your audience is of utmost importance.

In this article, we’ll explore the power of visuals in email marketing and provide you with practical tips and best practices for incorporating them into your campaigns. Get ready to take your email marketing to the next level with the help of compelling visuals.

The impact of visuals in email marketing

With the average person receiving dozens of emails every day, it’s crucial to make your emails stand out from the crowd. Visuals play a key role in achieving this. When a recipient opens an email and is greeted by an eye-catching image or an engaging infographic, it immediately piques their interest. This initial visual impact can make the difference between your email being read or deleted.

Not only do visuals capture attention, but they also convey information quickly and effectively. A well-designed visual can communicate a message much faster than a block of text. This is especially important in today’s fast-paced world, where people have limited time and patience for reading lengthy emails. By using visuals strategically, you can ensure that your message gets across in a concise and visually appealing way.

Benefits of using visuals in email marketing

The benefits of incorporating visuals into your email marketing strategy are numerous. Firstly, visuals make your emails more engaging and memorable. Studies have shown that people remember visual content better than text alone. By including visuals in your emails, you create a more immersive experience for your subscribers, making it more likely that they will remember your brand and message.

Secondly, visuals help to establish and reinforce brand identity. When your visuals align with your brand voice and message, they create a cohesive and consistent brand image. This consistency across all touchpoints, including emails, helps to build trust and familiarity with your audience.

Finally, visuals can drive action and conversions. Whether it’s a compelling image that entices the recipient to click through to your website or an infographic that highlights the value of your product, visuals have the power to persuade and motivate your subscribers to take the desired action.

Types of visuals to use in email marketing

When it comes to incorporating visuals into your email marketing, the possibilities are endless. Here are a few types of visuals you can consider:


Images are one of the most common types of visuals used in email marketing. They can range from product photos to lifestyle images that showcase the benefits of your offerings. When using images, it’s important to choose high-quality, relevant visuals that resonate with your audience. A well-placed image can instantly grab attention and make your email more visually appealing.


Infographics are a great way to present data and complex information in a visually appealing and easy-to-understand format. They can be used to educate your subscribers, showcase industry trends, or highlight the key features of your product or service. By presenting information in a visually engaging way, infographics make your emails more informative and shareable.


GIFs are short, looping animations that can add a touch of fun and personality to your emails. They are particularly effective for showcasing product features, demonstrating how-to steps, or adding a sense of movement and excitement to your emails. However, it’s important to use GIFs sparingly and ensure that they enhance rather than distract from your message.


Videos are a highly engaging form of visual content that can convey messages in a dynamic and interactive way. Whether it’s a product demo, a customer testimonial, or a behind-the-scenes look at your business, videos can captivate your audience and keep them engaged for longer. However, keep in mind that not all email clients support embedded videos, so it’s essential to include a compelling thumbnail and a clear call-to-action.

Tips for creating visually appealing emails

Now that you understand the impact and benefits of using visuals in email marketing, let’s dive into some practical tips for creating visually appealing emails:

Maintain a consistent color scheme and branding

Consistency is key when it comes to visual branding. Use your brand’s color palette and typography consistently in your emails to create a cohesive and recognizable visual identity. This will help your subscribers associate your emails with your brand and build trust over time.

Optimize your visuals for mobile devices

With the majority of emails being opened on mobile devices, it’s crucial to ensure that your visuals look great on smaller screens. Optimize your images and videos to load quickly and resize seamlessly on mobile devices. Consider using responsive email templates that automatically adjust the layout and size of your visuals based on the device.

Use whitespace strategically

Whitespace, or the empty space around your visuals and text, is just as important as the content itself. It helps to create a clean and uncluttered look, allowing your visuals to stand out and your message to be easily digestible. Don’t be afraid to leave some breathing room in your emails to create a visually appealing and balanced design.

Incorporate strong and clear calls-to-action

Visuals should not only grab attention but also guide the recipient towards the desired action. Make sure to include clear and compelling calls-to-action (CTAs) in your emails. Use visually distinct buttons or hyperlinked text to make your CTAs stand out. Consider using contrasting colors and persuasive language to encourage clicks and conversions.

Test different visual elements

A/B testing is a powerful tool for optimizing your email marketing campaigns. Experiment with different visuals, such as images, GIFs, or videos, to see which ones resonate best with your audience. Test variables like placement, size, and style to determine what drives the highest engagement and conversions. Use the data gathered from A/B testing to refine your visual strategy and continuously improve your email performance.

Best practices for using visuals in email marketing

To ensure that you are using visuals effectively in your email marketing campaigns, it’s important to follow some best practices. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

Keep your visuals relevant and meaningful

Choose visuals that are directly related to your message and resonate with your audience. Avoid using random or generic visuals that don’t add value or evoke emotion. Your visuals should enhance your message and help to convey your brand’s unique personality and value proposition.

Optimize your visuals for accessibility

Accessibility should be a priority when creating visual content for emails. Use descriptive alt tags for images and provide captions or transcripts for videos. This ensures that your emails can be understood and enjoyed by all recipients, including those with visual impairments.

Be mindful of file size and loading times

Large file sizes can slow down the loading speed of your emails, leading to a poor user experience and higher bounce rates. Optimize your visuals for web by compressing images and videos without sacrificing quality. Aim for a balance between visual appeal and fast loading times to keep your subscribers engaged.

Test your emails across different email clients and devices

Email clients and devices may render visuals differently, which can impact the overall look and effectiveness of your emails. Test your emails across various email clients, such as Gmail, Outlook, and Apple Mail, as well as different devices and screen sizes. This ensures that your visuals appear as intended and deliver a consistent experience to all recipients.

Tools and resources for creating visual content for emails

Creating visually compelling emails doesn’t have to be overwhelming. There are plenty of tools and resources available to help you create and optimize visual content. Here are a few popular ones:


Canva is a user-friendly design tool that allows you to create stunning visuals, such as images, infographics, and social media graphics, without the need for graphic design skills. It offers a wide range of templates, fonts, and graphics to choose from, making it easy to create professional-looking visuals for your emails.


Unsplash is a popular platform for high-quality, royalty-free images. It offers a vast library of stunning visuals that you can use to enhance your email marketing campaigns. Simply search for relevant keywords and choose from a wide selection of beautiful images that align with your brand and message.


Lumen5 is a video creation platform that transforms your blog posts or articles into engaging videos. It uses artificial intelligence to analyze your text and automatically generates video scenes with relevant visuals and animations. With Lumen5, you can easily repurpose your written content into visually appealing videos for your email marketing.

Case studies of successful email marketing campaigns with visuals

To truly understand the power of visuals in email marketing, let’s explore a few case studies of successful campaigns:


Airbnb is known for its visually stunning emails that showcase beautiful destinations and unique accommodations. By using high-quality images and personalized content, Airbnb creates a sense of wanderlust and inspires recipients to book their next travel adventure.

Warby Parker

Warby Parker, an eyewear company, uses visuals effectively to showcase their products and create a memorable brand experience. Their emails often feature lifestyle images of people wearing their glasses, helping recipients envision themselves wearing the products and making a fashion statement.


Grammarly, a writing assistance tool, incorporates visuals to highlight the benefits of their product and make their emails more engaging. They often use animated GIFs to demonstrate the features of their platform, making it easier for recipients to understand how Grammarly can improve their writing.

A/B testing visuals in email marketing

As mentioned earlier, A/B testing is a valuable technique for optimizing your email marketing campaigns. When it comes to visuals, you can test various elements to determine what resonates best with your audience. Here are a few variables you can test:

Visual style

Test different visual styles, such as clean and minimalist vs. bold and colorful, to see which one generates higher engagement and conversions. Consider your brand personality and target audience when choosing the style that best represents your brand.

Placement and size

Experiment with different placements and sizes of your visuals to see where they have the most impact. Test placing visuals above the fold, within the body of the email, or at the end. Also, test different sizes to find the optimal balance between visibility and load time.

Call-to-action design

Test different designs for your call-to-action buttons or hyperlinked text. Try variations in color, size, shape, and wording to determine which design drives the highest click-through rates. Remember to make your CTAs visually distinct and easy to spot.

Analyzing the performance of visual elements in email campaigns

To measure the effectiveness of your visual elements in email campaigns, it’s important to track and analyze key metrics. Here are a few metrics to consider:

Open rate

Monitor the open rate of your emails to see if visuals have a positive impact on the initial engagement. Compare the open rates of emails with visuals to those without visuals to determine the difference in performance.

Click-through rate

Track the click-through rate of your emails to evaluate the effectiveness of your visuals in driving action. Analyze the click-through rates of different visual elements, such as images, GIFs, or videos, to identify which ones generate the highest engagement.

Conversion rate

Measure the conversion rate of your emails to determine if visuals contribute to higher conversions. Analyze the conversion rates of emails with visuals against those without visuals to assess the impact on your bottom line.


In conclusion, visuals have the power to elevate your email marketing campaigns and captivate your audience. By strategically incorporating visuals that align with your brand voice and message, you can make your emails stand out, enhance the user experience, and drive action. Remember to follow best practices, test different visual elements, and analyze the performance of your campaigns to continuously improve your email marketing strategy. With the right visuals, you can take your email marketing to the next level and achieve impressive results.