Once you've built your HTML email, you send it with an email client that supports HTML email, like Netscape Messenger, Microsoft Outlook, Eudora, and others. In most of these clients, you will need to find the correct setting to set up HTML email.
Netscape Messenger (4.7):
- Click on "Edit" and choose "Preferences"
- Choose "Formatting"
- Make sure "Use the HTML editor to compose messages" is selected
- Decide how you want people who can't read HTML email to receive it
- Click "OK"
- Click on "Tools" and choose "Options"
- Switch to the "Send" tab
- Make sure that the Mail sending format is "HTML"
- Click "OK"
- Choose Message > New Message or Ctrl-M
- Use the Thunderbird editor to add your HTML into your message directly
Sending HTML Email Tricks
- Some mail clients will let you use the <base href=""> tag in the <head> of your HTML email, but not all email clients support that tag
- Background images (in the <body> tag) only work in some email clients
- The bgcolor attribute works best if you put it in a table, and enclose your entire email in a single celled table
- Most email clients that support HTML email, only support a limited version of HTML, it's best to avoid more complex things like frames in your email
Remember, Not Everyone Has HTML Email
If you send HTML email to a person who's email client doesn't support it, they will get the HTML as plain text. Unless they are a Web developer, comfortable with HTML, they may see the letter as a lot of gobbledegook and delete it without attempting to read it.
If you're sending out an email newsletter, you should give your readers the opportunity to choose HTML email or plain text. If you're just using it to send to friends and family, you should make sure they can read HTML email before sending to them.