7 Best Practices for Using Images in Email Marketing

Email Marketing

Email marketing is an amazing way for businesses of any size to communicate with existing audience and reach out to new prospects. The hardest part is getting subscribers to actually read the emails. So, how do you do that? With visuals! Here are the 7 best practices to using images in email to achieve your marketing goals. 

1. Use stock images wisely. 

When combined with a mixture of other types of visuals, stock images are invaluable marketing assets.

  • Make sure to use royalty-free images. 
  • Follow all copyright rules to avoid any legal repercussion and prevent tarnishing your brand identity. 
  • Look comprehensively for unique, authentic photos so you won’t end up with generic, overused images. 

2. Use images of real people 

Building human connections in your email marketing is a must. This means you may opt for photos of actual humans – as long as it brings out the essence of your brand. Including faces of real people is more likely to entice viewers to read your content.  

  • Capture photos of real moments within your team or staff from other departments.  
  • Request from your customers photographs of themselves using your products and services.  
  • Invest on a photoshoot so you can have beautiful images of actual people who work with you or promote your brand. 

3. Choose the right image file size 

Too many large-sized images can slow download time and negatively affect user experience.  

  • Keep the height of the pictures to less than 200 pixels with a width up to 600 pixels.  
  • Use the right tools to crop out the images to avoid resizing your photos in strange ways just to reduce file size. 
  • Test out your emails on various devices to see how they appear before sending them out to customers.  

4. Choose correct image format 

It’s essential to completely understand correct image formats when using digital images so you can use them more effectively in your email campaigns. 

  • JPEG images have the lowest quality, but they take up the least amount of space in your emails. With JPEG images, you are assured fast loading times and minimal chances of getting blocked by spam filters. 
  • PNG images work well with texts and logos. However, this might mean slower load times. 
  • GIFs don’t contain as many colors as JPEG or PNG but its smaller size can lead to faster load times.

5. Include alt text 

Alt text is what you need when creating an image-heavy email design for your subscribers.  

  • Alt text is useful for visually impaired visitors to your site. 
  • It guarantees every recipient is able to take in the information presented in your images. 
  • This pops up on the screen in case the image fails to upload.  

6. Ensure relevancy 

The images you choose for your email marketing should provide insight into the values and pursuits of your business.  

  • Make sure the images are relevant to the content of your email.  
  • Choose eye-catching, illustrative images to entice your subscribers to read the email. 
  • Recipients should be able to look at the image and quickly relate it to the email content and your brand identity. 

7. Optimize for different devices 

The vast majority of emails will be read on mobile devices – and that is where you should focus your energy on selecting the best images to go along with the content. But don’t forget that subscribers will also be using a different device, email app, and web browser; images might display differently depending on their privacy preferences. Always test out your emails before you send them, to ensure your photos appear correctly on every device.  


When used correctly, images can take your email marketing campaign to the next level. Now it’s time to get to work on creating and sending out your email campaigns. With Waves, we can help you unlock the full potential of email marketing. Sign up for FREE today!