Using PHPList for Newsletters

Many people use PHPList to send email newsletters of all sizes. One of the services that I provide is the development of these newsletters. PHPList is a very nice application, but being open source it is a little rough around the edges. The user interface is not very user friendly, but I have been able to fix that with a little bit of HTML and Javascript. I found someones freely available PHPList admin template and simply expanded upon it. Take a look at the before and after shots. Before:

And here is the after. That looks a little less intense, no? My next biggest issue is with how it handles the footer, which is where by default your links for things such as unsubscribing go. The default footer code produces something that looks good for the text version of the newsletter, but produces a "this link" link in the HTML version of the newsletter. And by that, I mean:

If you want to unsubscribe from this newsletter, this link

Again, not exactly the most user friendly approach. Not only is it not even English, it sticks out like a Mac in a PC lab. Recently I actually had a client love everything about the newsletter, and pick that out right away.

After much testing of variables, here is the way to get the footer looking good in HTML newsletters, and still looking OK in Text newsletters. Hopefully most of your users will be subscribed to the HTML version anyways.

One thing I would like to note is this: in a future update to the PHPList software, I think it would be wise to have two footer configs in the global configuration, one for HTML newsletters, and one for Text. That would be the most optimal aproach to the situation. Here is the HTML code that finally worked, after many, many attempts at different variables:

If you do not wish to receive this email, you can <a href="[UNSUBSCRIBEURL]">unsubscribe from it</a>.

Additionally, you may wish to update your <a href="[PREFERENCESURL]">preferences</a>.

You can also <a href="[FORWARD]">forward this newsletter to a friend</a>.

Comments (7)

chris_huh [TypeKey Profile Page]:

Where did you get that free template from?

Preben [TypeKey Profile Page]:

Do you have a link Ken Edwards ?
Thanks in advance
Preben

Hi, this is a great modification, I would also be interested in using it. If you ever make it available, could you send an email?

I did not make the interface, I found it on the PHPList forums some time ago.

I am also not sure if it works with the latest 2.10.7 version, but it should. I have yet to have time to try that out.

Let me go hunt down the original link for you all.

The readme says: Written by Elanore Hall for Colizer Inc.

I cannot find it online anywhere, maybe you will be able to have better luck than me.

I have uploaded my modifications to the original here:

http://meancode.com/phplist-admin.zip

Ken Edwards [TypeKey Profile Page]:

Better version here:

http://tinyurl.com/dkfuge

Kevin [TypeKey Profile Page]:

Hi, thanks for sharing this. I've got the files uploaded and everything seems to work okay, except the "Advanced Settings" button does not do anything. I didn't modify the HREF code, which for this button is "javascript:toggle('adv');"

I'm using PHPlist v2.10.12 and Firefox & Chrome for browser (in case that's relevant).

Any suggestions?

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