Jun 12, 2012

v7.2: Mobile Friendly

Smartphones just outsold desktop computers. We’re all walking around with computers in our pockets. But you already knew that. What’s new here is that people aren’t going mobile–it’s computers that are going mobile. So in MailChimp v7.2, we built some features to help you with the second part of that: designing mobile friendly emails.

 

Here’s what we launched:

  • 15 pre-built, mobile friendly email templates
  • Pop-up mobile preview
  • Push draft to mobile device, for instant testing
  • Mobile styles editor, so anyone can tweak responsiveness
  • Free mobile inbox inspections

 

Mobile Friendly Email Templates

You’ve probably seen other email services post tips, advice (and even rants on Twitter) about coding mobile friendly emails. Yep, talk is nice. We, however, prefer to make mobile friendly email templates available to our 1.8 million users at the click of a button. That’s being constructive.

Mobile templates using media queries

 

You’ll find all these beautifully-designed, responsive email templates under "Designer Templates:"

 

marked as [mobile]. More templates, under each of our other template categories, are on the way. Lots more.

 

Pop-up Mobile Preview

After you’ve selected a mobile friendly template (or uploaded your own) we’ve made it super easy for you to preview how responsive they behave on mobile devices. Just click "pop-up preview" like you always do, then switch your display to mobile:

 

In our mobile research, we observed that most people "zoomed" their smartphone displays in and out by rotating them. So we added the ability to rotate this pop-up preview from portrait to landscape mode:

As you rotate your screen, you can see how responsive your design is. Do the images and text scale the way you’d like?

 

Push to Mobile

Sending test emails can be a pain. You click the "send" button, then wait a few minutes for your test to make its way through the intertubes, past spam filters, and then into your inbox. Then you tweak your code, and send another test. Then you wait. Then repeat. No more.

We’ve made mobile email testing instant. Just use our new "Push to MailChimp Mobile" option:

 

and we’ll bypass your inbox and push your test email straight to the MailChimp Mobile app (available for iPhone and Android). You’ll get an instant alert:

 

Click "view" and there’s your email:

Rotate it on your device to check that the fonts and images scale as expected, and you’re ready to send.

Well, almost ready. You should probably test it on more mobile devices. Which brings us to…

 

Mobile Inbox Inspections

A little while back, we made our Inbox Inspector feature free. You probably didn’t know that, because every single time we’ve sent an announcement about it, I failed to realize there was some holiday going on (d’oh).  Well, now you know. They’re free.

And it just so happens the reports are loaded with mobile devices you can test your emails on: iPhones, iPads, Blackberries, and Androids.

We figured you’d want to test on those mobile devices more often (you know, since they’re free and all), so we moved the link to Inbox Inspections under a new "preview & test" button. Now you can run them while you tweak your campaigns, instead of waiting until the final campaign preview screen.

 

 

In total, the Inbox Inspector generates 18 screenshots for mobile testing.

Hope you enjoy the new features.

 

Mobile Email Research Study

MailChimp’s UX team conducted some behavioral research: Email on Mobile Devices. It’s packed with observations and design ideas, and it’s free.