Email: Plain text or image-heavy?

Was wondering what everyone is doing for email? Do you send ones that are more text-heavy or image-heavy?

(My opinion for food bloggers is to send one that’s mainly text but could include 1 or 2 images of a recipe you are sharing.)

This article is from a few years ago but says plain text is often opened more often.

Personally - as a content consumer - I prefer all-text emails. That’s why I only do a header with the logo, the rest is all text. But I haven’t done any testing yet, I wonder what works best in the food world.

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I actually haven’t considered testing with this, but it’s a great idea @kasia ! We are very image heavy on our emails because how can we resist the beautiful flodesk templates?! :laughing:


Having used most of the email platforms :joy: (Mailchimp, Convertkit and now Flodesk), I personally prefer the images. They encourage me to click and open and help tell the brand story. My readers seem to feel the same way - after all, we do partially eat with our eyes. That all being said…testing is a good idea!!


I’m new and this is my first response so let me know if I’m doing something incorrectly. I’m kinda worried about the “does your reply improve the conversation in some way?” and I doubt it. I can’t image my opinion improving anything but I’ll give it a whirl.

As an email subscriber, I dislike the ones that are all text. They seem stark, cold and unfriendly. I exit out of them immediately.

That’s not entirely true. I have joined email lists of friends and several of them take the text only approach. I try really, really hard to read it but I. Just. Can’t.

Even with friends, I won’t click something if I don’t know what I’m clicking. I’m just not doing it. Getting people to click through is tough. There’s no way I’m clicking if there’s no photo.

I know that there’s been talk about all text being better but I truly believe that people respond better to images. I know I do and I can’t be the only one, right?

I literally open it and then close it, solely so I don’t end up on their delete list when they cull their email lists.

Is it possible that the text only approach only works well for certain niches?



Hi Kim @24! Welcome to the forum and I’m so glad you’re here! And yes… you definitely are adding to the conversation, so feel free to contribute any time. :blush:

I agree with you about the text-only emails. They bore me to tears and if there’s a lot of text, I just don’t get very far. I think especially for food bloggers who have access to tons of delicious images, we have to at least throw in a few (and people actually want us to because everyone loves looking at food).

Thanks again for contributing to the conversation!!

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Thank you! :slight_smile: :relaxed:

Kim! Your opinion is valued here! One of our goals for this platform is to uplift everyone, and that’s even in our value statement. (Even if it wasn’t we’d love to hear your opinions!)

I agree that I don’t love it when marketers send these long blocks of text out and they try really hard to be my friend and have such “creative” email titles, ugh. I have unsubscribed from some that do that. (But, then I know so many of them test and analyze their stats and they still do it, so IDK?)

BUT, I do think there’s a happy medium. It does depend on the industry and I think it makes a lot of sense for food bloggers to add some images. I think images that add value and really communicate something can be helpful.

Also, just like on blog posts you can divide things up using bullet points, appropriate headlines and so on, so it’s not just sending out a block of text!

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I really don’t like those pen-pal kind of emails either. But, like you said, they must appeal to someone or they wouldn’t be doing it.

There is one indie email newsletter that I click through almost every time I receive. One recipe link, two images, two or three small paragraphs.

It’s a matter of finding your target audience and what they prefer. There must be a market for the text emails or they wouldn’t be doing it.

Since everyone is different and some like fluff and some don’t, I wonder whether anyone has considered two different emails?

You could put ticker boxes on the signup, if you really wanted to appeal to both. “Check this box for fluff newsletter and this one for just the recipes, please.”

I don’t know. Seems like a lot of work, but it could potentially cater to each visitor’s individual tastes and has the potential of getting a better open rate.