iWeb FAQ - Newsletters/Mailing List



Does anyone know of an easy way to integrate an e-mail newsletter manager into iWeb? I’d like one that is free, if possible. What’s the best way to manage the contacts? How can I build the Newsletter in iWeb? How do I send it out?

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Chapter 1: Adding a form for the people to subscribe to the Newsletter

Chapter 2: Managing the contacts of the mailing list

Chapter 3: Building a Newsletter in iWeb

Chapter 4: Sending out the Newsletter

Chapter 1: Adding a form for the people to subscribe to the Newsletter

What I found to be the best way to create a Newsletter is creating your own form to subscribe and unsubscribe to the Newsletter and embed it using an html snippet. To create the form you can use to subscribe to my Newsletter I used Wufoo.com which works really great and has only few advertising. After I created the form I copied and pasted the resulting code to my Newsletter page using an HTML Snippet and that’s it.

Chapter 2: Managing the contacts of the mailing list

On my computer I made a new user account.

How can I create a new user account in Mac OS X?

  1. -System Preferences =>Accounts

  2. -Click the lock to make changes

  3. -Add a new user account

On that account I’ve set up Mail to use the e-mail adress I send the Newsletter e-mails from and to which I get subscribe or unsubscribe notifications from Wufoo.

The AdressBook of that account is filled with the subscribers’ contacts.

Chapter 3: Building a Newsletter in iWeb

Go to iWeb and from File menu choose "Add a new site", call it something like "news" or whatever you want.

Build a new page. Best is to use a blank white or black page.

Delete the TextBox for the title and everything else on the page.

Go to Inspector=>Page=>Page and uncheck both “Include page in navigation menu” and “Display navigation menu” boxes

Go to Inspector=>Page=>Layout and set both Header and Footer height to zero

(That’s really important!)

Add a new TextBox to the page. Everything you put on the page (and by everything I mean everything) needs to go into this one TextBox. All images, all text, whatever...

(That’s really important!)

Otherwise (adding images outside the TextBox or adding multiple standalone TextBoxes) on some online E-mail accounts it gets a mess and everything will be upside down. It would just look awful.

Of course you can add TextBoxes in the main TextBox itself (New TextBox, Copy, go inside the main TextBox, paste). But they shouldn't float around as standalones.

At the top of the page write something like:

"If this e-mail doesn’t display correctly to you please click here"

Turn the "click here" part into an external link referring to the address of your iWeb Newsletter page on the web

(yourdomain.com/sitename/pagename.html or web.me.com/username/sitename/pagename.html)

and choose "Open link in a new window". This is for the people whose online E-mail account doesn’t render the e-mail as it should be.

All the links on the newsletter need to be "External links" and open in a new window. Don't use "One of my pages".

Once you wrote the newsletter publish it. Visit it in Safari and hit Command(Apple)+i or go to the File menu and choose "Mail contents of this page". This will open the Mail application and create a new e-mail with the page of the Newsletter in it. Even when you sent the e-mail the site needs to stay published on the web for the people to see it. Take the chance to make a Newsletter-History so that people and yourself can see and keep track of what you worked on in the past.

Chapter 4: Sending out the Newsletter

Simply select all the contacts (or the Group) you'd like to send the Newsletter to from the Address Book application and add them to the Bcc field in the e-mail If you don’t see the Bcc field go to View and choose “Bcc address field”. The Bcc prevents everyone from seeing the addresses of the other people to whom you sent the e-m@il.

Send the e-mail and you're done.

Note 1: Known problems sending out e-mails like that:

- On some online e-mail accounts images don't display for security reasons (Yahoo) on other online e-mail accounts people need to click on a link that says "Display pictures" (Gmail).

- Some people say the e-mails are more likely to go into the spam if sent this way. I don't know. I think no matter how you send out Newsletters they are likely to go into the spams. Have the people adding the e-mail address used to send out Newsletters to their contacts to prevent this from happening. Adding your own e-mail address in the “To:” field of the e-mail maybe also decreases the number of e-mails being caught by spam filters.

Note 2: To build the actual Newsletter you can also make a .pdf file using Pages and Attach it to the e-mail or write it directly in Mail or whatever you want...

This FAQ is also discussed in my iWebFAQ.org E-Book (sample)

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