What’s New with Gmail and What Does the Future Hold?
We’re going to look under the hood at what’s new in Gmail, what the latest features mean for email marketers and developers, and take a glimpse at what’s further down the line.
How Do I Access the New Gmail?
Gmail users can access the new Gmail by clicking the settings cog (in the top right of the inbox) and selecting “Try the new Gmail.” Do you still want to use the old Gmail? No sweat – click on the settings cog and select “Go back to classic Gmail.”
What’s New with Gmail?
New Productivity Features
Aimed at boosting productivity, several of the new Gmail features allow users to take action on emails without opening them. As shown in the image below, users can now archive, delete, mark as read, and snooze emails by hovering on an individual email.
No More Hover Effects
The old Gmail supported the use of CSS hover effects, a way to add extra interactivity to your emails, but unfortunately, the new Gmail does not support this effect. While this could be a subtle push by the Gmail team toward the upcoming launch of Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) for email, we suspect this is just a byproduct of the update. Either way, don’t expect the return of hover effects anytime soon.
Unsubscribe Suggestions on Gmail Mobile
One of the new features to hit Gmail Mobile is unsubscribe suggestions. Gmail will now use a card notification to suggest emails that users may want to unsubscribe from.
There’s no need to panic, though! Email marketers who are sending relevant, engaging emails to their subscribers need not worry. A similar feature is available on a variety of email clients, including iOS mail, and they haven’t created any real cause for concern.
Changes to How Gmail Handles Emoji
In our Guide to Emojis, we note that Gmail will replace emojis in the subject lines with its version of emojis, Goomojis.
This new update has corrected that – sort of. Although Gmail users will now see their operating system (OS) emojis in the subject line, Gmail will continue to be served Goomojis in the body. Not perfect, but a step in the right direction.
What’s on the Horizon for Gmail?
We’re excited to see what the future holds for Gmail, as they’re dedicated to developing, testing, and releasing new features. For email marketers and developers, it’s critical to be aware of any future features they choose to implement so you can make the most of them when they land.
AMP for Gmail
Google recently announced Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) for email as a way of adding interactivity to email experiences inside Gmail.
With the new Gmail update removing CSS hover support, we remain cautiously optimistic about the rollout of AMP. We’ve yet to hear any updates, but we’ll let you know as soon as we do.
Gmail Is Testing Promotion Cards
Deftly spotted by Rafael Viana of Return Path, Gmail seems to be testing promotion cards, or cover photos, under email subject lines.
Our good friend Justin Khoo also covered this on his blog, FreshInbox, and noted the similarities to Gmail’s 2014 attempt at Grid View.
Justin also notes how easy it would be to use these promotion cards if such an update made its way into Gmail.
“Unlike AMP for Gmail, which requires ridiculous tooling changes for existing email service providers, many senders are already sending Schema-enhanced email,” Khoo writes. “Furthermore, many email service providers, such as MailChimp, added the ability to send Grid View images in their apps (only to disable it later), which they can easily enable should Gmail make promotion cards widely available.”
It could be a while off before we see this as a fully-fledged feature but keep an eye out for these promotion cards.
Another Client Update? This Is Why It’s Important to Test!
As you can see, email clients are constantly changing and updating; the code that you used in your last email may break in your next. This is why it’s important to test every email, every time. Email on Acid can show you what your email will look like before it hits your subscribers’ inboxes, so you can make changes before you hit “send.” Sign up for our free, seven-day trial and see for yourself.
Author: Alex Ilhan
Hailing all the way from England, Alex brings his email development expertise along with an endless stream of cups of tea and British cynicism. Follow him on Twitter: @omgitsonlyalex.