Images can be uploaded while working in the Design step of our Campaign Builder. Every image you upload will be stored in the image section of the File Manager in your MailChimp account and can be edited with Aviary. Below, we walk you through some troubleshooting tips to follow if you're having difficulty uploading an image or getting an uploaded image to display in the campaign.

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Images not uploading

  • We recommend a maximum file size of 1MB per image. If you can't upload an image, check the file size to be sure it's not too large.
  • Images should not contain spaces or special characters such as $, #, or & in the file name. Having spaces or special characters can sometimes cause upload issues. Additionally, some email clients, like Gmail, won't even display an image that has a space, symbol, etc., in the file name. Either remove the space or replace them with underscores.
  • If you're uploading an image from your own server to your campaign via a URL, make sure the image's file extension (.jpg, .png, .gif) is in the URL.
  • Internet security programs will sometimes block the image upload layer. This is most likely what's happening if you aren't able to see the image upload tool, can't get an upload to work, and the items listed above aren't an issue. You can fix this by setting the MailChimp domain as a trusted domain with your internet security program or firewall.

Images not displaying correctly

If your image did upload but isn't displaying correctly, there are a few things that could cause this to happen.

  • Any image used in an email template must be RGB (web) and not CMYK (print) formatted. Note that Safari, Firefox, and IE9 and later now display CMYK files, so it's best to test your images on both IE7 & IE8 as well as Firefox if you're having trouble viewing them after uploading. If you see the image in Firefox, Safari, and IE9 or higher but not in Internet Explorer 7 or 8, your image is probably formatted as CMYK. Most of the time, this makes itself apparent on upload, but if you upload in Firefox and then send a test to webmail users on IE7 or 8, you may see this happen.
  • Is the header image or logo missing in Outlook and Outlook isn't giving you an option to download? Sometimes rebooting your computer will clear Outlook's cache, allowing the broken image to display.
  • Some email applications block images from loading and displaying unless a user clicks to show or download images in their email client. So if a recipient has this security feature enabled (by choice or default), it will appear that there are no images showing in the recipient's inbox. Unfortunately, MailChimp is not able to bypass or influence this security feature in order to get images to display. It's best to give your recipients the option of adding the email address that your campaigns will be coming from to their address book when they sign up. We provide this through a vcard that we place on your confirmation forms.
  • Images hosted with MailChimp's File Manager are sent securely, using https:// protocol. Some Outlook users may have local settings that prevent these images from loading, although it is not a default setting. In some cases, a subscriber may simply need to close the email and reopen it for the images to display. Otherwise, they may need to alter their inbox preferences.
  • When digital cameras and phones are used to take pictures, they can add Exif data to those images. Exif data can store an orientation tag that specifies the position of the camera, such as if it was sideways or upside-down, when the photo was taken. While these images will display properly within MailChimp, they may display incorrectly outside the MailChimp editor depending on how the browser or email client handles the orientation tags. Editing or removing Exif data generally requires a specialized photo editor or metadata tool.

Broken images

When you code HTML email, you should use "absolute paths" for your images, so that they are downloaded from your web server when the email is opened. Images are never "attached" with your email, and they can't be "embedded" in the message. They're always hosted on a server, then downloaded when the email is opened.

If images in your campaign appear broken, there are a few things to consider to make sure images display as expected.

  • Don't host images used in email campaigns on a free image hosting site or free website account. These systems often block outside links to images they host to keep their bandwidth costs down. It's always best to host the images on your own server when providing your own HTML for campaigns.
  • The image tags in the HTML code need to use absolute paths to download the image files from your web server. Make sure that all the image tags point to existing hosted image files.
  • Make sure the images in your campaign are not being hosted on a secure server that requires a login and password.
  • Some email applications block images from loading and displaying unless a user clicks to show or download images in their email client. So if a recipient has this security feature enabled (by choice or default), it will appear that there are no images showing in the recipient's inbox. Unfortunately, MailChimp is not able to bypass or influence this security feature in order to get images to display. It's best to give your recipients the option of adding the email address that your campaigns will be coming from to their address book when they sign up. We provide this through a vcard that we place on your confirmation forms.

Additional troubleshooting steps

Keep in mind that the web is set to display best at 72dpi. Compressing a large piece of content through HTML tags (resizing it in our editor) is going to blur the image as it reduces in size.

If your images get blurry when you upload and resize them, then you've over-reduced what the image could support. The best way to fix this problem is to alter your master graphic so it's closer to the correct size before you upload it. This should keep your image appearance clean and blur-free when you place it in your email.

If you're having a problem with fonts being unreadable in your resized graphic, then you've over-reduced what the font in your image can support. Again, the best way to fix this problem is to make your graphic as close to the correct size before you upload.


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