A Quick Guide to AMP for Email

amp for email publishers

When Google announced that it was testing out Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) content in Gmail last year, it caught the attention of email marketers everywhere. Now that AMP for Email is rolling out for real, it’s back in the news and back on the minds of eager email marketers. Here’s a few things to know about AMP.

AMP for Email: The Details

Since 2015, Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages format has allowed brands to improve site performance with fast, responsive experiences. AMP for Email brings this technology to the inbox, enabling users to fill out forms, browse carousels of content, and complete other actions without leaving the email.

A quick AMP for Email FAQ:

  • What email clients support AMP? So far, Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Outlook.com, and Mail.Ru.
  • Who can send AMP email? You’re free to create them to your heart’s content, but you can’t send them until you’ve been approved by Google.
  • Are all AMP components available for use in email? No, only a subset of AMP components are supported in the inbox. The official AMP for Email documentation also provides a full list of supported components.
  • What happens to an AMP email when it’s forwarded? Email clients will strip the AMP MIME part from the email when a user hits reply or forward, which makes it all the more important to provide fallback content.

What you should consider before turning to AMP for Email

AMP’s potential for more engaging email experiences has piqued the interest of many email marketers, but are the potential returns equal for all email marketers? Not always. Before you make the call to get on board with AMP, here are some things to think about:

  • Your available resources for email development. With the additional MIME part required by AMP, sending AMP email essentially requires you to build two versions of each email. Can you comfortably sustain those efforts? Is it worth it to build a second email just to save your recipients a single click?
  • The goals of your email program. Is your email program designed to drive traffic to your site? Or is it more about keeping your brand top-of-mind? If it’s the former, you’ll have to figure out if AMP will cause you to lose out on the benefits of bringing your audience to your site, such as driving onsite ad revenue.
  • Your business model. For many companies, like publishers, the purpose of email is typically to get readers out of the email and onsite, where these readers can be more effectively monetized. If AMP keeps your audience in the inbox, it could be antithetical to your business model.
  • Where your audience reads email. Not every email client supports AMP, and as email goes, some of those clients probably never will. Look at your audience data to see if you even have a large enough AMP-ready audience to justify the effort.
  • Why your audience uses email in the first place. One of the virtues of email newsletters is that it provides a finite, finishable way to consume content at a certain point in time. It also allows readers to quickly forward articles or other email content to their friends and family. Given that AMP content cannot be forwarded, will a dynamic AMP email disrupt your audience’s process?
  • Your email content plan. As with any new technology, it’s not enough just to use it; you have to have a reason to do so. If you’re implementing AMP content without adding value to your audience’s email experience, it’s worth thinking about whether that time might be better spent elsewhere.

Of course, making things easier for your audience is generally a good thing, and in general, that’s what AMP for email has the potential to do. But it’s important to weigh whether your AMP efforts will actually accomplish that.