HomeArctic Reservations v2EmailsEmail Templates Part 2: Creating New Email Templates

17.3. Email Templates Part 2: Creating New Email Templates

After selecting a business group and an email category for your new template, click either the green "+ Setup Template" button for categories without any email templates in them already or the green "+ Add Alternative Template" button for categories that already have a template and allow additional templates (note that only some email categories support multiple templates, see part 1 for more information).  

This will take you to the "Create a New Template" page. Initially the page will load with only a few fields; Business Group, Name, Design, Subject, Sender, Attachments, and Order.

In the "Business Group" field you can double check the business group assignment for the template to be sure the new template will be in the business group you want to use it for. 

Next, you will give the email template a name that will help you identify it easily. This is especially important for those email templates that will belong to email categories that contain multiple templates, as it will help reservationists select the appropriate template.

If you have created email designs in your system, you will be able to choose the design you want to use for the template from the "Design" drop down menu. If you have not created any email designs in your system you will only be able to select a plain design for your email template. See the "Creating an Email Design" section of this guide for more information on how to create email designs for your email templates. 

In the "Subject" field you will enter a subject line for your email templates to use. Notice, you can use placeholders for the subject line to personalize the subjects for each of your guests.

For instance, if you are creating a rental details email template, you could use placeholders to personalize the subject line for your guests like this:

Rental Details for Rental {$activity->uniqueid} on {$rental->start|format:'DateTime'} booked by {$recipient->namefirst}

(The bold text in the sample are the placeholders chosen from the available options in the placeholder menu under the subject line for a rental details email category email template.)

This will render the subject line like this "Rental Details for Rental A1342 on June 5, 2015 at 9:00 am booked by Big Bird". This information was based on a hypothetical rental A1342 made by Big Bird for June 5th, 2015 starting at 9:00 am.

The "Sender" drop down menu will be where you select the sender you want this email template to come from. 

If you choose "Use default", Arctic will use the default email address that you have set up for your installation. (For more information on email senders, see the "Adding Email Senders" section of this chapter.) If "Active User" is selected, Arctic will use the email address associated with the user sending the email or in the case of email trigger templates, the user who created the activity or most recently edited the activity or its invoice. This will be the email address the user uses to log into Arctic. Finally, if you select "Manually select", Arctic will add another "Sender" drop down menu where you will be able to choose one of the senders you have added to your system.

Now you are ready to start entering the content for your new email template. Once you selected a design from the "Design" drop down menu, Arctic added a "Content" box for you to enter your email content. 

The first field you will see in the "Content" area is the "Mode" field. The options are "Smart Content" and "Separate HTML and Text Content". Arctic will by default select "Smart Content" for the "Mode" field. For 99% of users this will be the mode you will want to use as this allows Arctic to do all of the heavy lifting. Arctic will take the content you enter and create an HTML version of the template and a text only version as well. If you are an advanced user and want to have separate HTML and Text Content depending on the version of the email sent, then you can select the "Separate HTML and Text Content" option for the "Mode". If you choose the "Separate HTML and Text Content" mode for your email template, Arctic will provide you with two separate content areas, one for your HTML version and one for your text only content. You can use the available placeholders in both content areas.

For more information on the SmartContent mode, consult the "SmartContent Syntax" page of the documentation. SmartContent is a formatting method that works well for both HTML and text recipients. It is clear and easy to read as text, but Arctic can also convert it to richly formatted HTML for those recipients who can see HTML content.

Regardless of the mode chosen, when entering your email content, you will use the available placeholders to personalize your email and to tell Arctic what specific information you want to include in your email. When adding placeholders you will type and use the same punctuation you would use if you were entering the information yourself.

For instance, if you would type Dear Sam, for your email, this will look like this using a placeholder:

Dear {$recipient->namefirst}, 

Notice, that there is a space between "Dear" and the placeholder just like there is between "Dear" and "Sam". Also notice, that the comma immediately follows the placeholder like it would be placed after "Sam". 

Once you have created your email content, you can add any additional attachments that you want to be included each time this email template is sent. To add attachments click the blue "Add" and Arctic will allow you to upload new files or choose files that you have already loaded for your system. (For more information about adding files to your installation, see Step 6 of the Getting Started chapter.) 

Note: You do not want to add attachments to the email template that were already added to your trips or rental items otherwise these attachments will be added twice when you send your emails. A good rule of thumb for know where attachments should be added whether to the trip type/rental item or to the email template is to ask yourself if the email attachment is used exclusively by the trip type or rental item you use it for or if you send the file to all of your guests who will get a certain type of email. If the file is only used for a specific trip type or rental item then you should add the file to the "Attachments" tab for the specific trip type or rental item it belongs to. If the file is sent to everyone getting a particular type of email then you should add the attachment to the appropriate email template. 

Finally, if you are creating an email template in a category that can have more than one template in it, you will be able to tell Arctic whether you want the template to "Show First" in the list of possibilities shown when the "Email" button is selected or if it can be "Unspecified" meaning it doesn't have to be first it can just appear anywhere in the list Arctic decides to put it. By default, Arctic chooses "Show First" for the "Order" field when you are creating a new email template. 

Once you have completed all of the fields and entered your email content, click "Submit" to save your new email template. Your template will now appear on the "Browse Templates" page when the appropriate business group is loaded and you will be able to start using the new template immediately to correspond with your guests.

If you want to see an idea of how your email will look you can click the "Preview" button next to the name of your new template on the "Browse Templates" page. 

You can also get to the "Edit" and "Delete" options for your email templates on the "Browse Templates" page. 

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