looking at a blast thru different email clients sometimes a background or photo won't show up. How can we fix for Outlook?

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We send out regular blasts to our client list. We when look at it through different browsers sometimes a photo or a background won't show up. We are mostly having trouble with Outlook. Any ides how we can fix?
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Posted 3 years ago

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Greg Rathbun, Customer Service Specialist

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Outlook is somewhat notorious for how it renders HTML emails. The following link to Litmus (a company that allows you to test how your emails render in different programs and a leader in the email testing field) gives a good overview of the various rendering issues across different versions of Outlook. 

While each version of Outlook has its own quirks, Outlook 2007, 2010, and 2013 tend to be the most common culprits. This is because each of these versions were built based on Microsoft Word (a great word processor, but not so great at HTML) instead of a web browser like Internet Explorer (a browser that's meant to translate HTML). Not rendering background images is one of the quirks you'll notice in these versions.

The good news is that Microsoft has finally acknowledged these issues, and has taken the step of partnering with Litmus to improve future versions of Outlook.

For now, understand that these issues are Outlook ones and are not limited to emails sent through Emma, nor are they due to anything you are doing. I'd suggest continuing to test your emails across different programs, and avoiding background images if many of your contacts use Outlook.

On a related note, many versions of Outlook (along with other email programs) are set by default to not display images. For this reason, we suggest building mailings that use a mix of content, rather than just images. You can also give your images alternate text when adding them to your mailings. This alternate text will show if an email program is set to not display images, and is a good way to ensure content is not missed if images are not shown.
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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled Different Destinations Receive Different Errors.

I design/send in Explorer.   Just ran a test of my latest email and odd thing are happening depending on the destination of my test.  Yahoo = Perfect;  Gmail = text alignment is off;   Outlook = Pics disappear with "The linked image cannnot be displayed. The file may have been moved..." in the photo box.  Further, when I forward the perfect copy from Yahoo to Outlook, the same "Outlook Issues" as previously noted prevail despite the perfect nature of the yahoo copy.  The Preview in the Design mode is also perfect.  I'm fairly confident that this is an operator-error (me) issue, but I cannot find where to start with the dx & correction.
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Heather Sturm, Integrations Support Specialist

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Hi there! Thanks for reaching out! I merged your question with one from another user because it is quite similar. You'll definitely want to check out Greg's response above.

We do see a lot of formatting issues related to Outlook!

One additional tip that we offer is related to text into the Emma editor. Whenever possible, type directly into the editor inside of Emma (rather than copying and pasting). However, we do know that copying and pasting is sometimes necessary, so if you use this method to enter text, please use a text editing program such as Notepad, textEdit, or editpad.org and paste your text through that editor before pasting into Emma. This will remove any formatting that may have been introduced by a word processing program that could also be impacting the ways that Outlook renders HTML emails. 

I hope this helps! Please feel free to contact us if you have additional questions!