We surely don’t like to remind unpleasant things – but anyway, do you remember that anxiety we felt up to 2019 spring? We even thought of reeducation as it seemed that the email marketer profession is about to extinct back then. Dozens of forecasts stated that outdated email format itself will be replaced by advanced new-fashioned communication channels.
In March 2019, Google released AMP for Email. This brand new technology is a part of the whole Internet AMP-powered reload that is in the constant process of implementation now. Since that day, things changed completely – and we, the email marketers, are not scared of the dark future anymore. It turned out that a good old email messaging is still alive – moreover, the very essence of this format was updated to a new level.
No wonder that top email clients like Yahoo and Outlook didn’t want to skip this trend, so they immediately announced the upcoming support of AMP emails. The matter is that AMP-powered bulk mailings are a dream come true for email marketers: instead of quite boring regular messages, we can send our clients “mini-websites”, so to say. I.e., really functional emails with modern interactive features and dynamic data.
Sounds cool, isn’t? We guess so as not only Yahoo and Outlook joined the Google initiative – other email clients are on the run as well as ESPs and template builders like eSputnik and Stripo.email.
Well, let’s look at all this in detail.
What is Google AMP for Email?
AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is an innovation based on AMP HTML protocols that are, in fact, HTML code updated to transfer data much faster. High-speed internet transfer means that we can add more content to websites… or to emails, if we are talking about AMP for Email. Firstly, it’s about the dynamic and interactive content. There are special patterns embedded in AMP HTML code to send interactive elements while real-time data is based on the principle of server-stored content. In other words, dynamic data is not encoded in the email body but stored on a server.
Of course, such a deep process is not too easy to implement. This is the whole system reconstruction. But the process is intense and it’s only a question of time when everything will work. So let’s skip the technical aspects and continue with what is much more actual for us.
Which new horizons open for email marketing with AMP-powered messaging?
New AMP-powered opportunities
As we said above, the very essence of email is updated to a new level of website lite version where interactive and dynamic elements help marketers to enhance interaction and engagement. Moreover, it’s more convenient for recipients as it prevents the extra actions people don’t like to do now. Why navigate somewhere else like it was before? Do everything right in the email.
Interactivity is not just an entertainment but extended functionality. It allows to do the following things:
- scroll image carousel to see many pics in the same block instead of a single one;
- preview all the available product versions from different angles with lightbox effect;
- check how many items are in stock;
- add items to cart;
- calculate the purchase sum;
- make a purchase itself;
- fill in a form or a questionnaire right in the email;
- order tickets and places;
- link email to the calendar and track the registrations for an event;
- and many other things – vote and rate, leave and answer the comments, confirm meetings, track exchange rates or sports game score…
Once again, all that is right in the inbox, Carl! As a result, it boosts the conversion rate. Another important thing is the feedback. Data collecting became much easier and it’s also a key to success.
No wonder that AMP-powered content is among the 2019 top trends. New forecasts are much more optimistic, they predict only the growth of the popularity of AMP.
It seems great… But it would be unreal without pitfalls. So let’s proceed with a real problem and its solution. Of course, there is always another side of the coin, and in addition to advantages might be some disadvantages. Nope, it’s not about displaying of AMP content and web safe fallbacks… this point is much worse.
But it’s a clear answer to this frequently asked question about AMP:
Why should we get whitelisted?
AMP-powered content is a backdoor for hackers, so without this mandatory condition, it should be a fatal security breach. Imagine that bad guys encode viruses or other malware into the AMP block script… it would be so easy for them to crack or damage your inbox, steal your credit card information and other private data! Scared? I guess so.
That’s why Google needs to ensure you’re worth trust. Before sending AMP-powered bulk mailings, you must get whitelisted with Google. In a nutshell, it looks like this:
- authenticate your sender name, SPF, DMARC and DKIM settings and check the XHRs destination;
- verify your mailings history, domain reputation, and low spam rate;
- send an example of your AMP email to Google;
- and finally, fill out the Sender Registration form.
Then wait. This operation is not AI-based, the decision is made by real people, so it requires some time. If you finally received that awesome message that you’re whitelisted – congratulations, it means that since now you have permission to send AMP-powered campaigns.
How to craft AMP campaigns and send them?
Got whitelisted? Well, nothing can stop you now 🙂 Time to craft and send! As for sending, make sure that your ESP supports AMP. For today, these nextgen mailings are supported by Amazon SES, Amazon Pinpoint, eSputnik, MailGun, and Sparkpost ESPs. Regarding email clients, Gmail and Mail.ru support AMP while Yahoo, AOL, and Outlook announced this in the nearby future.
AMP-powered content creation is a way more complex topic. There are different ways to do this. The most complicated and risky solution is to craft email manually – recommended for coding geeks only, otherwise, you can see your “masterpiece” in compilation with #madskillz hashtag.
Much better is Gmail AMP for Email Playground. There are 10 ready-made AMP elements – choose what you need, customize it, and embed its code in your email. You can also craft AMP emails from scratch if you want, or code AMP HTML fragment and then embed it via HTML editor of your email builder.
But the easiest way is to choose ready-to-use AMP templates or AMP-powered blocks offered by modern template editors. Stripo editor is to rescue – you can add the AMP elements both via code editor or in drag-n-drop mode… as well as just to choose one of the templates of this type.
The last but not least thing to mention – always think about all clients and provide them with web safe fallbacks as not all ESPs and email clients support AMP-powered content yet! It’s awful when people see some crippled chunks in their inbox instead of complete well-functioning email. F. ex., regular interactive carousel or static images are good fallbacks for AMP carousel. As AMP content displaying still depends on combinations of ESPs and email clients, test what you send! For AMP content, a perfect symbiosis is Gmail Validator + Litmus. You will see how your email is displayed by various combinations of devices, email clients and OS.
We sincerely wish you the best of luck!