SuiteCRM is an open source CRM tool that you can use to manage your sales funnel and customer relationships to help you track and generate new business. Because it is open source it has some pretty big pros and cons. The biggest benefit is that you get a whole lot of functionality for free. The biggest con is that you need to have a bit of technical ability if you want to set it up and run it for your business (without paying for the hosted version). There are also a few quirks that come along with SuiteCRM and one of those is their Email Template editor. It can be a little challenging to get the exact look you want for your marketing campaign email. One big feature that is not available “out of the box” is creating a call to action button which, these days, is a key tool for any kind of digital marketing.
This post is specifically addressing creating a Call to Action button that can be clicked and will take a prospective customer to some sort of landing page where they can engage with your business. This helps you develop leads and possibly even opportunities depending on what you do with that landing page. With SuiteCRM you can create an email campaign that uses something called an Email Template where you build the email that you intend to send and include in that email something called trackers. When someone clicks on a tracker in your campaign email, SuiteCRM will log those clicks and give you a record of which of your “targets” has interacted with your campaign email in a particular manner. One possible type of tracker that you may want to create is called a “Call to Action” button. Unfortunately SuiteCRM does not offer you the ability to create one of these in the editor that is used to create these template emails. But, that does not mean it is impossible. In fact, it’s really not too difficult once you’ve figured it out. In this post we will explain how to create a CTA button in an Email Template. We will cover how to make this CTA Button a tracker in a future blog post.
Creating the CTA Button
First, you will want to create a new Email Template. The way that you do this in SuiteCRM is click on the ALL -> Email – Templates menus. This will bring up the “Email – Templates” page.
On the “Email – Templates” page you will be presented with the option “Create Email Template”, click that option and you will be in the edit screen for your new email template.
Once you are in the Email Template edit screen you can fill out the various fields according to your specific needs. In this post we won’t go into detail regarding how to do that. Rather, we will be focusing on how to use the editor to create a call to action button in your email template. You will want to scroll down to the “Body” section of the screen and we will be using the Mozaik editor that is provided with SuiteCRM to create the email template to be used for your campaign. If I’m completely honest, I’m not a huge fan of the way the Mozaik editor has been implemented in SuiteCRM. It does a lot of unexpected things when you are creating a template which presents it’s own challenges. But as you work with it you figure out the nuances and I think are able to come up with pretty reasonable templates for campaign emails. This is what the Mozaik editor looks like prior to starting.
The white section on the left hand side presents a list of pre-formated items that you can add to your template design by just clicking on them. Once you click on one of them it will appear in the screen to the right. For example if you click on the second item you should see the following.
At first glace, this seems fairly limited and it is on the surface. But, if you click on the newly created content section you are given a number of editor controls to change the content as you’d like. This is typical of any wysiwyg text editors much like the classic WordPress editor. One of the options you have available to you is the tools -> Source Code menu option. This opens up a text editor and lets you change the HTML that underpins what is displayed in your Email Template Design. This is how we create a Call to Action button in the template. Here is how you open the HTML so you can edit it. You first click on the content and then the wysiwyg editor menu appears. From here you should be able to get to the Source Code menu item as shown in the following screenshot.
When you click on “Source Code” a very minimal editor appears. And I have to say, the HTML that is presented is terrible. It isn’t formatted so it’s very hard to read. Also when you save any changes, be ready for your code to be changed by the Mozaik editor implementation. Fortunately, in the case of a call to action button you can add an anchor tag with a few simple styles and you will get a nice button that you can then add a tracker to. Before we look at the HTML I’m going to change the text to display what we will then style as our CTA button. It will look like the following.
Now obviously for your email template you would have a whole lot more content here but this post is merely showing how to create the Call to Action button and to make it more easy to understand I’m going to just focus on the button and not how to create a whole email template. When you click on the “Source Code” menu item, you will see the following HTML editor with the “Get a Quote” text circled in red.
In order to turn this into a “Call to Action” button we will need to add an anchor tag and specify some inline styles that will result in a very nice looking “Call to Action” button that can be clicked and take your prospective clients to whatever landing page you happen to link the button to. Here is what the updated code should look like, you can use whatever colors you prefer that work with your own color scheme. NOTE: I’ve added a paragraph after the href paragraph. The reason for this is that it shows the button more clearly once the editor is closed. Also notice that I have highlighted the HTML that we have edited for the CTA button in red.
Here I’m also including the code shown above in the red box for you to copy and use if you would like:
<p style="font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 22.4px; padding: 0px; margin: 0px;"> <a style="background-color: #0088aa; padding: 10px; color: #ffffff; border-radius: 3px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://reformit.solutions">Get a Quote</a> </p>
And once this code is saved you will see that it displays a clean and very presentable “Call to Action” button that when clicked will take your prospective client to whatever URL you have put in the href attribute of the anchor tag. Here is what it looks like in the editor.
Once you save your email template, you can then associate it with an email campaign and edit the CTA button with a tracker so that you can tell who has clicked the button in your campaign. That’s pretty much it. If you are trying to use SuiteCRM or build a website or are having any other kind of issues with your technology please feel free to contact us using the form below or request a quote and we’ll be more than happy to let you know how we can help you accomplish what you’re looking for!