Google Workspace customers can now take advantage of multiple layouts and sends in Gmail to send email announcements, newsletters, and other mass communications.
Several editions of gmail now include two features that improve mass emails: custom layouts and multiple sends. Layouts provide pre-made email templates for images, text, and web and social media links, while multi-sending lets you email up to 1,500 contacts at a time. With multiple sends, you don’t need to Bcc everyone, since each recipient receives a separate copy of your email in their inbox. The multi-send mode also automatically adds a personalized unsubscribe link in each email.
The combination of layouts and multiple sending means that Gmail may be all people need to send email announcements, newsletters or mass communication campaigns. Google Workspace customers with relatively simple, low-volume email campaign needs may no longer need to rely on a third-party email service.
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As of August 2022, these features are available in Workspace Individual, Business Standard and Plus, Education Standard and Plus, and Enterprise Starter, Standard and Plus editions. An administrator may need to enable these features by changing the settings in the Admin Console | Apps | Google Workspace | Gmail | Multi-send mode, as shown in Figure A.
If your edition supports multiple layouts and sends, try the following steps in Gmail in a desktop web browser.
How to Choose a Layout in Gmail
In a desktop web browser, navigate to Gmail | Compose to create a new email, then select the Choose layout icon. This displays the Select Layout screen with default layouts and access to style options, as shown in Figure B.
The layout option allows you to select a standard or flipped layout from six different layouts:
- Call to action: an image with text and a link to the action button.
- Simple text: Text with action button link.
- Announcement: Main and secondary content section.
- Newsletter: Several content sections.
- New service: several content sections.
- Reference: Reference title, several image and text sections.
Select the Default Style option in the lower left to customize the details that will apply to any layout you select. Options that you can modify at any time, as indicated in Figure Cto understand:
- Logo: Choose an image.
- Color Palette: Select from a grid or enter a hexadecimal color.
- Font: Select one of ten fonts.
- Footer details: Company name and address.
- Links: Enter your email address, website, and various social media links.
When you select a layout, the system adds images and text from the layout to your email draft. You’ll want to spend some time replacing the default text and images with the content you intend to send. Feel free to remove default items you don’t want. If your template includes a button, edit the link to ensure it opens to an appropriate page.
After entering your content, you can add recipients and fill in the Subject field, then send your email. However, in most cases it makes sense to switch to multi-send mode.
How to Set Up Multi-Send in Gmail
You can find the multi-send option in a Gmail compose window, either as an icon next to the Choose layout button described above, or as a menu option after selecting the menu at three points. In multi-send mode, a “You are using multi-send mode” message appears above the Gmail text formatting options and the New message and Continue buttons turn purple, as shown in Figure D.
Although you can add recipients individually, in most cases it will be easier to select all recipients with a particular Google contact tag. For more information on creating a Google contact label, see How to manage your Google contacts.
Click or tap directly on the word To: in the multi-send recipient field to access your Google contacts, use the drop-down menu on the right to choose the label for the set of recipients you want, check the box next to it from Select All, then select Insert, as shown in Figure D. You can add up to 1,500 recipients in the To: field.
Once the content and recipient fields of your email are filled in, select the Continue button. The system can provide a brief reminder of best practices for mass emails, including ensuring that your recipients have opted in to receiving emails from you. If you are sure that all recipients want to receive mass emails from your account, select the I understand button to continue.
The system is now ready to send and gives you three options: Cancel, Send preview and Send all. I strongly recommend that you select Send Preview. The system will send you a test email. Examine the test email for errors and verify that all buttons and links work as expected. Once you’re sure the content is correct, return to this step in the process and select Submit All.
A caveat about storage: keep in mind that multi-sending delivers a separate message to each recipient. If you add an attachment to a multi-send message, the attachment will take up storage space for each recipient of the email. It can add up quickly. To minimize storage space usage, upload your file to Google Drive and share a link to that file in your multi-send email.
What is your experience ?
How do you currently send email newsletters or announcements? If your Google Workspace edition supports multiple layouts and sends, have you used these features? Does the ability to use labels in Google Contacts, combined with multi-sending, mean you no longer have to rely on a third-party email tool? What tips do you have for effectively engaging email recipients? Mention me or send me a message on Twitter (@awolber) to walk me through how you use layouts and multi-sends in Google Workspace.