Fun with Microsoft Outlook HTML Email

Anyone who has had the "pleasure" of designing email has probably come to one very poignant conclusion: MS Outlook is terrible at rendering CSS and HTML for emails. The reason for this is that, starting with Outlook 2007, Microsoft thought it would be a reall great idea to stop rendering HTML email with the Internet Explorer engine, and instead render it with the MS Word rendering engine. Yes, you read that correctly: Word handles HTML and CSS for any emails in Outlook.

Thankfully, there are lots of documented workarounds for some common and persistent bugs in Outlook. One of the best is this: using conditional CSS to target specific versionf of Outlook. I'm linking to this great article from Mailchimp for reference.

Here is a basic example for targeting Outlook 2007 and above:


<!--[if gte mso 12]>
    <style type="text/css">
    /* Your Outlook-specific CSS goes here. */
    </style>
<![endif]-->

Comments

Thanks for informative share! I am using 2010 MS Outlook. I have also used 2007 MS outlook before...in my point of view, both of them are really good.

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Admiring the persistence you put into your site and in depth information you offer. It's good to come across a blog every once in a while that isn't the same outdated rehashed information. Fantastic read! I've saved your site and I'm adding your RSS feeds to my Google account.

Making a close look to these things may be funnier but one should also think of the mastermind coding behind all these. Writing the code is not as easier as accessing the page. MS Outlook is a strong code structure which doesn't just include the simple strategies. Well, it was great to know about the Outlook Conditional CSS. Thanks for adding the link.

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