HTML in Third Generation Editor

ErieBar
Regular Participant

HTML in Third Generation Editor

 At what point (if any) will we have the ability to edit message HTML code? I mostly use if for font size flexibility, but it's also useful for a vast array of message customizations...

 

Thanks! 

 

 

 

 

Top Answer
Jared_M
Employee

Hello everyone,

 

Currently, in our Third Generation Editor we do not allow access to edit the HTML and have no immediate plans to do so. We want to provide our customers with the abilities to be able to use a user-friendly interface instead of having to rely on a code view to get their desired results. With all the feedback we have been collecting we are planning on making improvements to padding and adding some line spacing elements in the UI. I know this doesn’t solve all use cases, such as adding tables, but we will continue to make strides towards improving the editor.

 

I understand allowing HTML would increase the ability for more control of your content but it can also have a negative impact on your newsletter’s display in email clients.  If we provide access to HTML for every block, changing some of the default styles or content could break display when sent to an email client. Also being able to manually adjust width could have a negative effect. We have a team of amazing engineers constantly testing our templates in all email clients, so you can be certain your email displays consistently across the board. With that in mind, we want to make sure we make it easy to provide the best look and feel not only on the desktop but on mobile. With a majority of opens now leaning towards mobile over desktop we take that as a priority.

 

Please continue to let us know your thoughts on HTML and what exactly you're trying to do so even if we don't have HTML access we will be able to give you the tools to get your desired outcome.

 

Thanks,


227 REPLIES 227
JulieL34
Super Participant

By now you must have quite a collection of reasons people need to access the html code, and I doubt that the powers that be at Constant Contact are planning to do anything about it soon. But I had an experience today that showed a whole new level of why it's needed.

 

I was working on an email and somehow it got three what I will call "phantom" images--that is the images were in the email but not visible to us when working in the editor. They happened to be images we wanted to use, but when we added in the blocks with the images, we then had double images of these three. They were visible when previewing the email but not when working in the editor, so we had no ability to resize, move, link or delete them. If we could have looked into the code, we could likely have found them and removed them, then added them again in the editor, and then hopefully they would have been visible and editable.

Hello @JulieL34,

 

Thank you for reaching out to the Community! I apologize that you are having this experience with your images. In order to troubleshoot this, please let us know what browser you are in and could you please switch browsers and enter your email campaign to see if you have the same experience?  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Community & Social Media Support

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DanD27
Occasional Participant

Please add back in this functionality. You have your fonts setup weird (ex. not 2, 3, 4... but 2, 8, 14 etc.) so it really makes it hard when working a design to function with mobile and desktop, or just match what you actually want the design to be. This has been noted before. I just wanted to add it a +1 (10000) for this feature. 

 

and yes, we can make custom html emails, but that is a poor solution when you used to have custom html in your previous editor. thanks for adding my name to the list of hopefuls. thanks!

PattiM07
Occasional Participant

The new editor needs HTML editing available. Period.

 

Outlook, as always, is a huge issue that you need control over HTML to really deal with.

 

The last line on this page:

 

https://knowledgebase.constantcontact.com/articles/KnowledgeBase/6754-image-and-table-gaps-in-outloo...

 

Literally says to edit HTML.

 

"If you're comfortable using HTML, insert your own breaks to space your content or add a style to automatically include a page break before each table row."

JulieL34
Super Participant

VERY GOOD POINT.

 

It's just nuts that this discussion has gone on for so long. Constant Contact needs to provide access to the html code. Just throw up a warning notice about how making changes may introduce coding that is not understood by all email clients, if you feel it is necessary. What are you afraid of really? It's not like we can force you to help us if such a problem is encountered. If we introduce new code and then call for help, you can tell us that you can't help in that situation. Period. The support people always told us that anyway if we wanted to make a change to the code.

nu-chemistry
Regular Participant

It would be very helpful to have this functionality. I'm relatively new to Constant Contact and was really surprised to learn that it is no longer included in this version of the editor. I have a background in web development, so the fact that one can't edit code is absolutely bizarre. I did some quick research and it seems users have been requesting this for over a year, but the same stock responses are being sent by CC without any idea of whether this feature will ever be reintroduced or not.

 

Give users a definitive answer either way. It's as simple as "We do not currently have plans to reintroduce HTML editing" or "Yes, we are planning to reintroduce HTML editing and will have it deployed by XX date." Giving the same reply "Your request will be routed to the product team" over and over again for over a year is simply a bad UX. 

 

I will be moving to  and suggest others to do the same. 

JamesFoCo
Regular Participant

Ditto ErieBar's point. HTML access just allows a lot more control & flexibility for end users familiar with using it. I am still using the 2nd generation editor for my campaigns because it has html access.

CatherineC46
Occasional Participant

This would be a fantastic feature! I don't want to recreate the wheel, just have some flexibility on some of the text blocks.

 

Thanks

 

I am not a coder and am not looking to create entire emails using HTML code. HOWEVER, it is extremely useful and time saving to be able to copy the code from a particular block and not having to recreate it.  Copying the entire email is a pain and is more time consuming when all you want to copy is one block. Example: Our sales team is comprised of various people in various places. When they want to send out a deal announcement regarding a recent funding to their referral source contacts, I would create the email in a legacy template, add the funding transaction, the new client logo, deal description, and I have a notepad doc where I keep everyone's "signatures" in html format.  Then at the bottom block I would use the HTML button to delete existing code and add the other person's code and done.  And I would continue to do this until the announcement had been created for each person. This is a HUGE time saver.  Until Constant Contact creates a library specifically for BLOCKS, which will allow users to save and reuse content blocks, I need to continue to use the legacy template. Which is a shame because I do like the new editor, and I thought upgrades were about adding features, not taking them away. The html button in the block edit is feature important enough where I need it on a regular basis. Constant Contact either needs to add an html button to the block edit menu or create a library where the user can save and reuse content blocks.  One or the other.  Would make things cleaner and faster for me anyway then having to copy and recreate. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE take this into serious consideration.  If Constant Contact ever takes access to the legacy/older templates away, unfortunately, we will have to start looking at other email marketing programs as the sales team continues to grow. 

NBTS
Occasional Participant

I just want to echo the above.  It is tedious to have to recreate blocks over and over.    The old editor allowed for HTML to be copy & pasted in.   That functionality needs to be added back.   Leave the WYSIWYG editor, just add that button back.    Also, allow a user to save a custom block would be enormously helpful.   

 

 

AIAPhiladelphia
Occasional Participant

I am also disappointed in the inability to access HTML in the 3rd generation editor. We have a weekly newsletter template set up in the 2nd generation editor that is part HTML and part drag and drop editor. We have a custom-built application on our website that allows us to easily build out the news and event content from our website, copy the HTML code and then paste it into the HTML code box in constant contact thus creating more than 50% of our newsletter while we do the remainder of it manually. What once was a process that was an entire day is now something we can knock out in about 2 hours. However, since constant contact started making all these upgrades we've noticed that the template is running very slow and maybe not holding up to the new system. So I thought I would upgrade to the 3rd generation editor.....except I can't unless I want to go back to building the entire newsletter by hand. This is a pretty big issue for us and I hope you will reconsider allowing the HTML block back!!!

JulieL34
Super Participant

Hi AIAPhiladelphia,

 

You are asking the wrong person to reconsider allowing the HTML. I have been calling for this along with many in this thread, for at least a couple of years now. But I'm just a user, like you are. At this point, I'd almost advocate for giving us what offers: a "code your own" block to drag in. This won't solve a LOT of problems, becasue we have so little control of what happens in between blocks, but at least it would be something. I understand they are trying to keep people from breaking the mobile code, but it's not like the way they convert for mobile is quite right anyway (like sometimes the images don't stay with their related text). I don't know if it will be worth any of our while to further demand this from CC, however. It seems certain they have made their decision and are drawing the line in the sand (albeit usually without admitting it).

EmilyD85
Member

Hi folks – I've been getting emails of these thread replies and it's disappointing to see that this issue hasn't been improved, and I feel like I need to update my previous comment and say that our organization has since left Constant Contact (will this get me booted from the forum?) and we are now using an email service that allows HTML editing, is mobile optimized (and looks really good on mobile), and lets you create custom content blocks to reuse in future campaigns. Although it lacks some features that CC has, we are very happy with it! We had some other good reasons to change providers, but the HTML issue was not the least of them. So, sorry CC, you lost a customer in part because of this lack of functionality.  

Please let us know which platform you've switched to. 

We switched to . We're a performing arts company and integrates with our ticketing platform, so that was a big improvement on top of the HTML functionality and custom content blocks. Unfortunately, we haven't been able to try out some of the ticketing-related bells and whistles due to COVID-19 putting a halt to live performances. They might not be the right fit for everyone, but they've been great for us. The takeaway is that it CAN be done, CC just isn't doing it for whatever reasons.

JulieL34
Super Participant

Constant Contact strips out the names of their competitors. Instead of explaining why they can't do something that other platforms are doing, they conceal the names of platforms when people discuss them. And they don't even put something like a blank line in place of it. They just strip it out and I guess they hope you'll think it was an error by the commenter.

ConstanceC96982
Regular Participant

I am greatly disappointed that you are no longer allowing HTML editing. It was the single most useful tool, besides copying a previous campaign and updating it for the week or month, in everything you provided for campaign development.

 

To claim that allowing content creators to continue to use HTML editing can create problems in the emails is pretty condescending of you. I can look at my previews and see if things look the way I want them to look. I used to be able to check the code on my donate buttons to determine a solution to a complaint about one of them not working. I used to be able to insert and customize images and their precise placement in a block. I used to be able to customize font features within a sentence without having Constant Contact suddenly insert <p> where I absolutely did not want it. I used to be able to create and format my own lists to set into a text box without dealing with the limitations of Constant Contact formatting choices for the masses. I used to be able to do detail-specific tweaking in an application created for the masses. 

 

I am unhappy with your New & Improved version of content creation with leaves me bound by structure and style that do not meet my needs. Please tell me how I can go back to a previous version of your software that supports the much desired by many, and much needed by many, that supports HTML editing.

 

You have done a great disservice to your users in your attempts to have a one-size-fits-all solution.

Your concept team has slot stature in my eyes. 

ScottJ324
Retail

Is HTML editing ever going to be enabled? Or should I start looking for another email tool. I get wanting to provide an easy to use interface, but why not offer both? I have a tool from my database that takes my inventory and creates a display of items, images and descriptions based on current data and produces an html output. What used to take seconds to create now takes hours with the latest editor. In fact I can't even reproduce what I used to be able to.

 

I hate the thought of leaving after nearly 10 years, but I can't do what I need to do with the current editor.