Insert Image in Email Body

Inserting images in email body is one way to add color to your email because let’s face it,  plain text emails are boring. We found that the majority of surveyed email users in Zimbabwe are quite comfortable attaching files to their emails (over 95%) yet, surprisingly, most (over 70%) of them were not familiar with the steps to attach images within the main body of their emails. So if you are not sure how to do this,  have comfort knowing that you are not alone; hopefully this article will help you understand the steps to get this done in Outlook and in Gmail.

Attaching Image in Main Body of Email Using Outlook

  1. Open Outlook and create a new email message
  2. Make sure that you are composing your email in HTML by going to the ‘FORMAT TEXT’ tab and selecting HTML
  3. Now type your message and then place the cursor where you want the image to appear within your text
  4. Go to the ‘INSERT’ tab and click on PICTURES
  5. Navigate to the image or images you want to insert.  Make sure your images are not larger than 640px by 640px for best presentation
  6. Click ‘INSERT’
  7. Once the image is inserted you can right click on it for formatting options including adding hyperlinks or adjusting image alignment.
  8. That’s it!!!

Try this out and change image sizes, alignment etc for practice.  You can even send a couple of test emails to yourself to see how the email will look on different email clients. There is no guarantee that your image will look the same across all email clients.

Attaching Image in Main Body of Email Using Gmail

Inserting an image in the body of your email in Gmail is not as straight forward.  Most go through the toolbar and then give up looking for that option.  Today is your lucky day…

  1. Navigate to Gmail settings and click on the labs tab
  2. Select the insert picture feature and a new button will be added to the Gmail Compose Mail toolbar.
  3. Compose a new email and type your text.
  4.  Place the cursor where you want the image to appear within your text
  5. Click the ‘INSERT PICTURE’ button/icon to select your desired image
  6. Gmail will paste the image and you can adjust it’s size from within the email message by dragging the corners
  7. That’s it!!!

Try this method out and test by sending yourself a few messages to review how the recipient will potentially view your message on different clients worth different settings.

It’s important to note that no matter what client you use,  if the recipient is viewing all messages in plain text then your image will potentially not show up in the email body on their client; it might be an attachment. Also,  some clients may have a setting that doesn’t show/download images automatically in an effort to save data, especially in Zimbabwe where data is still fairly expensive. Such clients may not see your image unless they click on ‘DOWNLOAD IMAGES’ within their client.

Hopefully this last part does not discourage you from adding images to your emails to add a little color and hopefully more engagement as a result… better participation and higher conversion rates worth email recipients.

Which methods do you use to insert an image in the body of your emails.


Ottawa University Graduate in (Honors) Accounting. After attaining a few accounting designations and proving to myself that I can pass exams at the highest levels, I now chase after my biggest dream – HAPPINESS! My passion is progressing my community through online technologies and giving an opportunity to AIDS orphans in Zimbabwe…

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