To Get Started:
Start by reading Installing plugins section in our comprehensive WordPress and WordPress Multisite Manual if you are new to WordPress.
1. Download the plugin file
2. Unzip the file into a folder on your hard drive
3. Upload the /e-newsletter/ folder and all its contents to the /wp-content/plugins/ folder on your site
4. Login to your admin panel for WordPress or Multisite and activate the plugin
Once installed and activated, you’ll see a new menu item in your admin area: eNewsletter.
Getting Set Up
The first thing you’ll want to do is configure your settings. Click the Settings sub-menu item.
There are 3 tabs that need your attention right away:
General Settings – your default settings.
Outgoing Email Settings – how your newsletters are sent.
Bounce Settings – how to handle the emails that get bounced back.
The General Settings are pretty straightforward. But to help you set things up under the Outgoing and Bounce Settings tabs, here are some handy links for default SMTP & POP settings if you’re using Gmail, Yahoo or Hotmail:
If you are using your host’s webmail services, you can get the settings you need in cPanel. Go to “Add/Remove E-mail Account(s)”. Next to the email account you want the settings for, select “Configure Email Client” from the dropdown. You’ll find all the settings you need on the page that opens next.
Once you have your Bounce Settings configured, click the “Test Connection” button to be sure it works.
Next up: the User Permissions tab. Here, you can fine-tune the capabilities of any active user role on your site.
If you do not want any other users to have access to any settings, you can leave everything blank. You won’t see the Administrator role there, because it has all capabilities by default.
Creating a Newsletter
Now that you have everything configured in the settings, let’s go build a newsletter!
Click “Create Newsletter” in your eNewsletter menu. You will see the newsletter builder which uses the WordPress customizer feature to make your job real easy. It updates in real-time too!
Fully customizable templates with the WYSIWYG builder.
Simply select the template you wish to use, then fine-tune the email settings for this particular newsletter if you wish.
The WYSIWYG content editor should be very familiar. You can add any content you wish to your newsletter including links, images and video embeds.
The final settings allow you to add a background image and adjust the color scheme if you want to.
Once you’re done, save your newsletter. Then enter your email address in the “Send Preview” area and click the send button. Check your email for your brand-new newsletter.
Reporting and Other Features
Now that you have a newsletter created, and some data to report, let’s take a look at how you can view that data. Click “Reports” in the eNewsletter menu.
There you will see all the data associated with the 5 most recent newsletters and the 5 most recent members. This includes info like how many newsletters were sent, to how many members, in which groups, how many were opened and how many were bounced. Cool huh?
Now click “Newsletters” in the eNewsletter menu. That screen shows info about all the newsletters that have been sent or simply created.
When you’re ready to finally send a newsletter, you can do so from either the Reports screen, or the Newsletters screen. Simply click the “Send” button next the newsletter you want to send, and specify who the newsletter should be sent to.
Oh yeah… did we mention groups? Let’s take a look at that now. Go to “Member Groups” in the eNewsletter menu.
There, you can create as many groups as you need or want. Member groups are basically mailing lists that your users can subscribe to.
Once users have signed up for group newsletters, you can view and edit that information on the Members page. Click “Members” in the eNewsletter menu to view that now.
You’ll notice a button at the top that says “Show the New Member / Import forms”. Clicking that will open the forms that enable you to create new members, or add them from a CSV file. The contents of your CSV file should look like the following screenshot (note that file should not have headers).
How do your users subscribe to your newsletter groups, you ask? You’ll find a new widget under “Appearance” > “Widgets” that you can add to any sidebar you like.
Depending on your theme, it could look like this on the front-end when users are logged-in. Of course, not-logged-in visitors will need to enter their email address and, optionally their name.
You can also use a shortcode to include the subscription form wherever you need it.
The shortcode has 2 parameters that you can customize.
- show_name enables/disables the “Name” field in the form for site visitors.
- show_groups enables/disables the group selection for site visitors.
For example, the shortcode configured as follows would display the group selection checkboxes, but would not ask for the visitor’s name.
[enewsletter_subscribe show_name="0" show_groups="1"]
Use the shortcode to add the subscription form to any post or page content, or even include it in custom page templates using the do_shortcode function.
Using Custom Themes
Yes! You can make your own custom newsletter themes. Simply copy an existing theme from the following folder:
Change the name of the copied theme folder to any name you like. Then open the style.css file inside your new theme, and change the Theme Name to the same new name. Now you have your own theme that you can customize to your heart’s content.
Once you are done customizing, you’ll need to upload your newsletter theme to your site. You can use either FTP for this, or the File Manager feature at your host’s cPanel or Plesk.
To prevent overwriting your custom themes when you update the plugin, e-Newsletter creates a special folder for them when you activate the plugin.
You’ll find the enewsletter-custom-themes folder in wp-content/uploads(+/siteID/ if activated on a single blog of a multi-site install).
Once you have added your custom themes to that folder, they will be available for selection in the templates area when you create or edit a newsletter.
We hope you’ll have fun managing your email campaigns with e-Newsletter! If you run into any snags, just head on over to the forums. Our stellar support team (and members!) are standing by to help you get things up and running smoothly.