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Keeping your brand guidelines in mind, we hand-code flawless Salesforce email templates. As renderability bears a huge significance in email design, we test the Salesforce templates in more than 50 different email clients. Furthermore, we also test them on 15+ devices so that they look good irrespective of the screen size.

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Our automation specialists know the Journey Builder and the various activities it offers like the back of their hand. With extensive experience in helping clients with setting up complex journeys in SFMC, you can completely rely on us for your email automation in the CRM.

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Besides creating templates, we can help to execute your complete email marketing strategy. Whether it is designing, deployment, setting up journeys, ESP integration, or campaign optimization, our proficient team can take care of it all.

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We understand Salesforce like no one else. Uplers can be a reliable partner for all the email marketing needs starting from campaign planning to deployment. Needless to say, we have access to the latest software tools to grow business growth for you.



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A Complete Guide to Salesforce Email Templates

Unravel the nuts & bolts of Salesforce Email Templates

Salesforce is the leading CRM, ranked at the top for sales, marketing, as well as customer service. With more than 150,000 companies using this powerful platform, it is quite clear that it can help you grow your business faster with cutting-edge technologies and innovative features. Launched in the year 1999 by Marc Benioff and Parker Harris, it has around 36,000 expert professionals who contribute to its huge revenue generation. ($13.3 billion in FY 2019)

It is also ranked #1 among all the email marketing platforms with all its sophisticated tools that allow you to reach your subscribers with personalized communications. It not only allows you to segment your subscribers according to the profile data, but also automates the entire email journey so that you can reach the audience at the right time with the right message. Salesforce is the safest bet if you are looking for a tool that can help you in making your email marketing strategy more efficient.

Are you deploying boring email templates to your subscribers?
Well, Salesforce can let you send impressive emails to your subscribers with their email templates. While it might seem to be a daunting task to create email templates in Salesforce, the truth is exactly the opposite.

Salesforce email templates help to enhance your productivity and send out consistent emails to the subscribers. To give you an overview, these templates with merge fields give you the liberty to deploy emails instantly by adding field data from Salesforce records. You can either build your own template or use templates developed by anyone else in the organization. You can even include a letterhead to the email template to ensure standardized branding and immediate brand recall for the subscriber.

First of all, we will have to understand the difference between the two interfaces: Salesforce Classic and Lightning Experience, as far as email templates are concerned.

Salesforce Classic Versus Lightning Experience

Salesforce Classic Lightning Experience
Through Salesforce Classic, you can email your contacts, prospects, colleagues, as well as person accounts directly via account, contact, lead, opportunity, case, campaign, or custom object pages. Lightning Experience allows you to send emails to contacts, leads, and coworkers from the account, person account, contact, lead, opportunity, campaign and case records you can access.
It is available in all editions except Essentials. It is available in all editions, that is Essentials, Professional, Enterprise, Developer, Performance, and Unlimited.
  • Go to the Activity History related list of a record and click "Send an Email".
  • You can either keep the formatting type to Text-Only or switch to HTML.
  • By clicking on Select Template, you can use a predefined email template.
  • Complete the fields and hit on the Send button.
Lightning Experience lets you send emails with merge fields and attachments in addition to providing access to templates created in Salesforce Classic, namely: Text, Custom HTML, HTML with Letterhead, and Visualforce email templates.
(We shall discuss these templates in the subsequent sections)
In case you are about to send an email to someone who has unsubscribed from your list, it will display a warning banner only if you are using the "Send an Email" composer.
On the other hand, when you enter an email address into the Additional To, CC, or BCC field, no such checks will be done.
Lightning email templates that have Related To field set to Opportunity, Account, or other standard or custom objects will be available only for that particular object. You can use global email templates, with a blank Related To field or the Related To field set to Lead or Contact, from the record of your choice.
It is possible to enter just one name in the To field. It is possible to edit the public email templates owned by you. You can edit any public template with the Manage Public Lightning Email Templates permission.
Signature can be added exclusively in text emails. Enable Salesforce Files and Content deliveries before selecting and attaching files from Salesforce Files. Without enabling these features, you will not be able to upload attachments. (Remember that once you upload a file, it gets included in Salesforce Files.)
If you want to personalize these emails, you can include merge fields that will be substituted by the actual information according to the Salesforce records when the email is sent. Without having access to a file, you will neither be able to attach it to an email nor a template.
You will be able to retrieve the fields that are available in the page layout and field-level security settings. Note that Professional, Enterprise, Unlimited, Performance, and Developer Editions offer field-level security. Lightning Experience enables you to attach files as links or attachments, based on the total size of the attached files.
However, if the file size crosses the limit of 3 MB, a link to the file will be attached to the email instead of the actual file.
Templates that include a merge field for which there is no data in the record will not show that field in the email. You can detect these blank fields by changing the recipient list view and searching for the merge fields used in the templates. Subsequently, you must enter the condition "<field> equals" while leaving the third field blank. Before deploying the email, make sure you edit the records with blank fields. Attachments sent as links do not expire automatically in this interface. You can do so manually.
Modifications in the email template will be reflected in the HTML version of the template.
Custom email templates are not modifiable.
The latest version of the file will be attached when you are forwarding emails.
Salesforce Classic gives you the feature to delete the attachment added as a link to an email. It is available in every edition except Essentials.
"Modify All Data" is the user permission you must have to do so.
Steps to delete attachments sent as links:
  • First, enter Attachments in the Quick Find box and select Delete Attachments Sent as Links.
  • You will have to either add the attachment URL or the file name (For example: if the attachment is a file in PDF format), sender's username, and date range when the email was sent.
  • Click search and Del next to the attachment to be deleted. Note that you will get up to 100 matching entries. For attachments sent using mass email, search results will display one entry for every 100 emails. Just delete one of the entries and the attachment will get deleted.
  • Subscribers who will click the removed attachment link will be seeing a message that asks them to contact the sender to get access to the attachment.
  • Bear in mind that these attachments cannot be recovered.
  • Furthermore, attachments sent as links will expire after 30 days. You can even take the manual route to expire them.
You cannot forward email attachments sent in Salesforce Classic in Lightning Experience.
Use HTML formatting in order to track the email and see to it that your Salesforce admin has included the HTML Email Status related list to your contact, lead, and person account pages. Email templates will support <meta>, <style>, <head>, and <title> tags. You should add these tags in Source mode.
You can have different formatting settings in the different parts of Lightning Experience. For instance: A list that uses letters and roman numerals in Contacts page will use numbers only in an email.
Need technical help with Salesforce templates?

Types of Email Templates in Salesforce

The usage of Salesforce email templates is not limited to creating boring newsletters. You can also use it to create automated emails ranging from welcome emails, lead nurturing emails, cart abandonment emails, stock replenishment emails, and re-engagement emails to name a few.

How to select an email template while composing an email?

Using an email template expedites the email deployment process for you and lets you focus on the core business better.

This feature is available in Essentials, Professional, Enterprise, Performance, Unlimited, and Developer Editions. You must have the "Send Email" user permission in order to send email and "Access to the file you're attaching" if you have to send an email or template with attachments.

Types of Email Templates

Salesforce offers four different types of email templates, as discussed below:

  1. Text Email Templates

    As the name suggests, this template includes only text without any possibility of formatting like font color or font size. If you want to send a plain text email manually, this is the right option for you.

  2. HTML (Using Letterhead) Email Templates

    To send this type of email, you must craft a Letterhead that works as the visual container of the email. You will also have to pick an email layout so that you can specify the distribution of the content. You can format the email text with the help of Formatting Controls without any need of HTML/CSS knowledge. It will give you a visually attractive and professional template in no time.

    Want to create professional business emails?
  3. Custom (Without Using Letterhead) Email Templates

    HTML and CSS are required to build custom email templates without letterhead. You can use these technologies for email customization and formatting. While these templates can be reused when you want to send an email manually, you cannot modify the layout or content of these emails.

  4. Visualforce

    To use this template, you must be familiar with HTML, CSS, and Apex. Visualforce templates give you the liberty of accessing information from other records in addition to the current record. It also lets you add a "Reply-to" address. Like custom email templates, you would not be able to modify the layout or content of these emails, but it can be reused again when you are sending an email manually.

    Need help with Salesforce HTML/CSS email templates?

Four easy steps to select an email template

  • Go to the record from which you want to send out the email.
  • Click the Email tab from the Activity tab.
  • For inserting the template, click on the Templates icon and choose the template you like. You will be able to see its contents.In the Lightning Experience interface, you can select a Lightning email template that is global. The template’s related entity type can be contact, lead, account, or opportunity. Choose the email template’s related entity type at the time of template creation from the Email Template page.
  • Edit your email and then send after checking the preview.

How to use personalization strings or merge fields in Salesforce email templates?

Personalization strings or merge fields principally help to personalize the emails. When you send out an email, Salesforce processes every string individually for the subscribers and populates the values from their profile attributes, system attributes, and Data Extension attributes. They can also be added in the subject lines, preheader text, and email copy. With the help of this feature, you can personalize the emails with the subscriber’s first name, the geographical location they are from, and recommendations based on their recent purchases.

Personalization strings work in sync with Email Studio and help to send tailormade emails that would enhance the overall performance of the email strategy.

Take a look at some of the basic personalization strings that Salesforce Marketing Cloud uses to extract the details:

a %%fullname%% Subscriber’s full name according to the profile attribute.
b %%emailaddr%% Email address of the subscriber
c %%replyname%% Sender’s name according to the account settings
d %%replyemailaddress%% Sender’s email address
e %%xtmonth%% Full name of the month in which the email is sent
f %%xtmonthnumeric%% Current month as a number
g %%xtday%% Date of the month in which the email is sent
h %%xtdayofweek%% Day of the week on which the email is sent
i %%xtyear%% Year of sending the email
j %%xtshortdate%% Short format of the date of sending email
k %%xtlongdate%% Long format of the date of sending email
l %%linkname%% Descriptive name of the hyperlink used to identify the web activity triggered by an email link
m %%emailname_%% Internal name of the email
n %%_messagecontext%% Context in which the subscriber perceives the email
o %%_MessageTypePreference%% Subscriber’s email type preference to determine whether to display text or HTML version
p %%_replycontent%% Placement of the body of an email into a reply email, especially in triggered sends
q %%_IsTestSend%% Resolves to true for email jobs stamped as a test send
r %%jobid%% Email send ID that works as an identifier attached with the email send that enables identification and tracking of data
s %%_PreHeader%% Any content assigned value for the Preheader attribute of the email message
t %%double_opt_in_url%% Inclusion of double opt-in links within the emails

Points to remember

  • Personalization strings are not case sensitive.
  • If you are including a personalization string into a line with other data, you should add a space before and after the personalization string.
  • As demonstrated above, personalization strings have two percent signs in the starting and ending.
  • You ought to allocate a default value for all the attributes used with the personalization strings otherwise the string will appear blank in the email, thereby hampering the subscriber experience.
  • You should not add any confidential information within email links.
Do you find the use of personalization strings confusing?

How to use content for external sources in Salesforce email templates?

Often, we copy and paste content from external sources like Microsoft Word or a web page to an email template. Doing so will give differently formatted copy and it might paste non-standard characters or hidden formatting that would not work with emails.

Workaround for this issue

You must type directly into the HTML email template and avoid using copy-paste. Take help of the Email Templates page in Lightning Experience and Setup in Salesforce Classic.

If you have to copy from Microsoft Word, make sure you disable the AutoFormat function or remove the automatic formatting.

It is a good idea to use a text-only editor like Microsoft Notepad for PCs and TextEdit for Macs in plain text mode to do away with special characters.

In Salesforce Classic, change the template encoding to UTF-8. Templates are already in that format in Lightning Experience.

Using Email Studio in Salesforce

Email Studio is a tool in Salesforce that facilitates sending basic newsletters as well as complex campaigns ranging from promotional to triggered messages.

Let's understand how it works…

Salesforce Email Templates Hacks

Salesforce offers four different types of email templates, as discussed below:

  1. Custom Date Formatting

    Salesforce takes into consideration the system’s location settings for date formatting. Nevertheless, many marketers prefer to display dates in the format of their choice. This can be easily achieved with the help of formulas.

    For example: In order to format the date in the mm/dd/yyyy format, you should use the formula mentioned below.

    {!CASE(MONTH(Record.DateField),1,"January",2,"February",3,"March",4,"April",5,"May",6,"June",7,"July",8,"August",9,"September",10,"October",11,"November",12,"December","Month")} {!DAY(Record.DateField)}, {!YEAR(Record.DateField)}

    Here Record.DateField is your date field.

  2. Display Information From Other Records

    If you want to present information from other records, you can use any of the three tricks mentioned below:

    • Use trigger to send your email. With the help of a trigger, you can hand-pick an email template and modify the content by adding information from other records before sending the email.
    • Opt for a Visualforce template. Visualforce templates, as discussed in the previous section, allow you to display information from other records but you will have to create your own HTML or CSS code to do so.
    • Add a Text Area field on the record and retrieve its content with the information from the other records.
  3. Add Record Link

    Salesforce comes with a Merge Field value that can be used to add the current record link: {!Account.Link}. The issue, however, is that it will be displayed as something like: https://na17.salesforce.com/3841028413w9bdfsk to the recipient.

    You can customize this text by adding a HYPERLINK() function within the formula field:

    HYPERLINK('/' & Id, 'Click here to view record')

    For users working on an HTML template, you can enter the text you want to display on the email template and click on the "Insert a Link" icon and set the link Merge Field value in the pop up window.

    Both these codes will show the end result: Click here to view the record.

  4. Attach email sent to record

    Activity History related list does not display the emails sent by workflow like the emails sent manually. This challenge can be overcome by using the Email to Salesforce functionality.

    Email to Salesforce feature allows you to attach emails to Salesforce Objects simply by sending the email to an email address generated by Salesforce automatically.

    By adding this email address on the "Additional Address" field of the email alert, you will be able to attach the email to the contact/lead to whom the email was sent.

    Furthermore, in case you want to attach the email to a record except contact or lead, you should add this code to the email body or subject: ref: RECORD_ID.

    For example: If you want to attach the email to a custom object having djpaweijpfoWEJFOR, you must add ref: djpaweijpfoWEJFOR to the email body.

Wrapping Up

If you want to make the most out of your email marketing strategy,
you should have a robust platform like SFMC that gives you more scope to innovate and enhance the subscriber experience. Salesforce email templates can help you reinvent these possibilities and boost your business growth by a zillion times.

Get in Touch

We shall get back to you within a few hours.


Can you help us with Salesforce email template design?

Yes, we are a full-service email marketing agency offering template coding & design services for Salesforce Marketing Cloud as a CRM. Our SFMC experts can also help you with email campaign management, automation, Salesforce journeys, and data integration and migration. Furthermore, you can hire a dedicated SFMC email specialist to work only on your projects.

Can you help us migrate from our current ESP to SFMC?

Yes, we can. Currently, you might be working with Mailchimp, HubSpot, Klaviyo, or any other ESP, and you wish to migrate to SFMC. No worries, our team of professional email experts helps you in a smooth transition from your current ESP to SFMC. To get started, just submit your ESP & data migration query with us.

Do you create responsive Salesforce email templates?

Yes, the Salesforce email templates we create for our clients are fully responsive. We perform rigorous testing of SFMC email templates on 50+ email clients and 15+ devices to ensure the templates render correctly.

I want a Modular email template for SFMC. How can you help?

Email Uplers can help you build master email templates with editable modules to help you cut down your production time & cost. We also create spectacular interactive emails in SFMC. Interactivity brings life to your emails. Furthermore, interactive emails garner greater engagement as compared to traditional emails. For further information, it is recommended you share your project details and other queries with us.

Can you migrate our existing Klaviyo email templates to Salesforce Marketing Cloud ExactTarget?

Yes, we offer migration services to seamlessly transition your Klaviyo email templates to Salesforce Marketing Cloud ExactTarget. Our team ensures that your templates maintain their design integrity and functionality while leveraging the capabilities of ExactTarget for enhanced customization and performance.

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