As email marketers, we fight multiple battles. One of those battles involves getting people to read your emails. And there is one surefire way to get fewer readers, make your entire email an image.

That should be the end of the post, but I’ll explain.

I got an email this morning from a company that I once gave my email address because I was interested in their product. (Truth is, I was researching them because they were a competitor to a company I was working with at the time and I just haven’t unsubscribed.) Anyway, it dawned on me that every email that I’ve ever gotten from them has been in image form, with no text accompanying it.

That means, if they win the first battle and get me to click on the email to open it, they still don’t have a reader. Because I use Gmail (this works the same way for most email clients), I still have to approve the images before they will display. So before I do that, I am staring a blank email in the face. It’s one more chance to hit delete before ever getting a single piece of your message. What’s the point?

I understand that a lot of people might think a picture heavy, well-designed email might look better than a text-driven one. But where are the facts to show that it’s more successful? If success is measured in click-throughs and sales, why make it harder to get to that end point?

I explain a whole lot more about email marketing best practices and how to get better results in my book, The Fundamentals of Email Marketing.