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Article number: 301930
Last updated: 23 December 2014

Sitekit CMS FAQ

How do I format and send a newsletter?

The mailing lists system will email a  block of text combine with the HTML from particular page (mult-part) out to every email recipient on a given list

Pages can be created on a Sitekit site and then sent as an HTML formatted mailing list (channel) broadcast. For most sites the template used for this page will be a simplified version of the one used for the site. There are known issues about such templates all of which relate to the fact that they are received and read on mail clients rather than browser. Follow the tips below when creating your mail-out and its template and you'll be fine

  1. Write your HTML for the content layouts and pages like it is 1996. Sad but true. Simple is best as far as mail clients are concerned so tables rather than divs. Minimal if any CSS files, instead style inline. 
  2. If there are any images used in the associated stylesheet (see above) then these these are sent as attachments along with the broadcast. This is unsightly so it is better to create a specific broadcast stylesheet that has no image calls.
  3. If the template for the broadcast uses a table with a background image it will not be picked up, only specific, inline <IMG> calls will go over with the broadcast.
  4. Often because you're using a page from your site it has a lot of associated scripts entrained in it. This isn't good as it inflates the page size and can also result in your email being rejected by some mail clients. The best approach is to create a branch specific scheme for the branch where you're getting your newsletter page. For this scheme edit the local variant of variable blocks like the 'HeadSectionHTML' and 'FOOTER' and remove reverences to jQuery and embedded JavaScript and also any Google related content. Its also a good idea to remove the Google Analytics code from this scheme also. This means that any page created an sent from that branch will be cleaned of script and also smaller.
  5. How the mail is received will primarily depend on the mail client so the textual content of the broadcast should contain character sets that are easy to translate for lower spec clients. A typical problem occurs with accented characters and MS Word specific content. e.g
    1. A word is entered like 'Fèis' however it is rendered on the received email (by the mail client) as either 'Fis' or 'F?is'

    2. Similarly if content is pasted into the page from a newer version of MS Word with items such as the MS Word dash '-' or the MS Word curled apostrophe ''' and again these are rendered as '?'

  6. The solution to both of the above is to encode in the simplest format so use the native apostrophe's and hyphens rather than dashes and use '&egrave;' instead of a pasted in 'è' etc.

Newsletters are no longer limited in size

We removed the 550Kbyte size limit in 10.5 however newsletter broadcast contribute to your bandwidth bill, some mail client may reject mail over a certain size and larger mail take longer to send. So in the interests of efficiency you should try to keep  your files size down. Keeping you mail page to under 750Kbytes per email should be feasible and is a good guideline, it will still be sent if its bigger. You can check the size of your prospective email using this utility, just put in the URL of the page you're sending and it will calculate its size as a file.

Remember: Its always better to test it first on a limited internal email address list than test it out on a thousand people.

  • Related CMS feature:
    Mailing lists

This article was last updated on 23 December 2014. Did you find it helpful?