Flat Design in Emails – Using it Right

Posted by Chris Donald On January 13, 2020 in story time I 0 Comments

Email designing is a lot more than just making it look appealing and fancy. Sure, email designs matter but it should also cater to the overall responsiveness of the email. This is where flat designs come in handy. It is a user interface design style that makes extensive use of two-dimensional elements which are simple yet are of bright colors at the same time. Contrary to skeuomorphic style which copies real-life properties and gives a three-dimensional illusion, flat designs provide optimal user experience by being responsive and scaling smoothly irrespective of the screen size.

Flat designs with its simplistic approach have worked towards making things easier for both the marketers and the graphic designers by avoiding the 3D elements of skeuomorphism. To put it in other words, instead of making use of gradients, textures and drop shadows created for delivering 3D effect, its focus lies on simple flat elements, typography along with flat color schemes.

Moreover, with the emergence of mobile web, flat designs with its ability to scale easily with responsive design have become the need of the hour. 43% of emails are already being opened on mobile phones. Therefore, if you want to have a strong user base with high click-through and open rates, it is high time you incorporate flat designs in your email. In short, here are few of the more reasons that would make choosing flat designs a necessity for you. Take a look.

  • It is very easy to create and can be developed instantly.
  • A flat email design can easily maintain the consistency of your flat website design.
  • It will help you create varied forms of your marketing campaign by making use of a single color from the guidelines of your brand. Designers can further make use of various shades of the brand color or combine it with other colors to make your campaign stand out amidst the competition.
  • As mentioned above, it makes your email responsive. It happens because of the one color usage that renders your email smoothly through most email clients by avoiding problems such as appearance of white lines between colors, customization in editor etc.

Now, since you all of its benefit, why don’t you go ahead and leverage it for your email campaign? However, make sure you use it in the right way. Here’s how you can do it.

1.  It is all about vibrant hues

Flat designs are all about incorporating bright colors into your email. You can easily make your email game top-notch by making the right use of colors. You must know that elements such as  color blocking, shapes, bars and tints can only work if you make use of the right color palette. Though flat designs work on all black and white too, but it is the vibrant hues that can make your email campaign really stand out. Consequently, using contrasting colors is the key to garnering attention in flat designs.  So, extract the benefits of bright color palette to ensure clear visibility of the text. For instance, instead of using a grey font on a dark background, it is better to use a light font on a bold background. And, if that’s not enough, you can even include colors like red, yellow and green and give a lively twist to your emails just the way TOPO DESIGNS did it. Take a look.

2.  Typography is the key

Words are the first and foremost part of any email. They dont only communicate the message but also serve as a navigational tool while telling users what to do with your email. So, leveraging words and using differnet typography that interests your subscribers is the key to optimal flat design. These designs are simple and minimalistic in its approach. Therefore, you must use such typography that connects with it. In this context, using sans serif typefaces can do the needful for you. Apart from having plenty of variations and weights, it also is large and easy to read, thereby indicating straightforward what an icon or illustration is all about. In addition, it also has a small line attached to the end of the stroke which adds up to needless decoration. Apart from this, you can even opt for a novelty font as an art element and pair it up with a flat design scheme while accenting it with simple typefaces. Look how Kate Spade uses amazing typography as a pro.

3.  Linking out related elements

Since 3D effect is not present in flat design, there is no scope of showcasing clickable buttons in it. Therefore, it becomes imperative to link out everything that users can find clickable. For example, if your email has a lot of thumbnail images clustered together, each of it should lead to the same page.

4.  Go for simple user interface and UI elements

Overdesigning should completely be avoided in flat designs. So, you should design the buttons in a way which makes it uncomplicated to click. All you need to do is have elements that are definable and clear to use. You can do this in the form of any color, outlining or boxing. In fact, you can even make use of different shapes or typefaces to give it an effective look.

5.    Creating a hierarchy is a must

Be it an email or a website, creating a hierarchy is a must. However, in flat designs, places to click are not that obvious because of the less use of elements like shadows, gradients, bevels etc. So, it is important that you put links clearly. It can be either in the form of different colors or boxes that are clickable. This would help users navigate within your email without stressing their mind too much.

Wrap up

Remember, flat designs are all about being implemented in the right way. Making use of bright, contrasting colors can help make images and icons really pop out from the background. Further, flat designs are also a great way of helping designers guide the subscriber’s eyes exactly to the place where they want it to be. All in all, flat designs are all about being simple which helps it convey the message in a way that’s easy to comprehend. In short, simple, clean and minimalistic approach – that’s what flat design comes with.

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