CSS support in email clients
First of all, I really don't like receiving HTML email. I dislike it so much I have configured my email software (Apple Mail) to never display HTML email unless I specifically tell it to.
That said, sometimes I find myself in a position where I just have to create an HTML email newsletter. You know, client demands and all that. Sometimes you just have to do it. And since I've long forgotten how to use nested tables, presentational markup and spacer GIFs, I really need to use CSS to style those newsletters.
Unfortunately, many, many people use email software with outstandingly lousy support for CSS. A few examples of such email clients are Gmail, Lotus Notes, and Eudora. Other clients, like Thunderbird and Apple Mail, have excellent CSS support. A CSS support chart for email clients would come in handy, wouldn't it?
It sure would. And while it does not include every single email client out there, the guide that the people at Campaign Monitor have put together is a good start. A Guide to CSS Support in Email details the level of support for CSS in the most widely used email clients. The guide includes email software for Windows and Mac OS as well as web based email clients.
The bottom line is that unless you know for certain what email software the recipients will be using to read your newsletter, you can save yourself (and the recipients) a lot of trouble by keeping it simple.
Come to think of it, keep it simple even if you know that the recipients all use email clients with top-notch support for CSS. The people who receive your newsletter will thank you.