Consistency is the key to a well designed e-zine. Aside from the format (look and feel) of the e-zine, the layout and order of your e-zine must be consistent.

When you pick up a book to read, you expect the book to run in a certain order: the title page, copyright information page, possibly a table of contents, an introductory chapter, body of the book made up of various chapters, and a chapter that concludes the book and wraps everything up for you.

The same is true for e-zines. Most e-zines run in a specific order to help make it easy for the subscriber to quickly read the pertinent information. Following are the basic elements of an e-zine.

--> Subject line: The subject of the e-mail. While one could use "John Smith's Monthly e-zine," a unique title might entice people to open and read. Try to keep it short so the title fits in most e-mail clients' allotted space. At most, you have about 30 seconds to capture the reader's interest. If the reader doesn't find something to interest him/her, the e-zine will be deleted.

--> Table of contents: This is optional; some e-zines do not have table of contents. However, most readers like to be able to skim the table of contents to see if there is anything that is worth reading.

--> Introduction: While an e-zine could just jump right into the first article, market research has shown a higher readability rate when the introduction is personal and captivating. Start your e-zine with a personal note, directly written to your subscriber.

--> Articles: This is the meat of your e-zine. Here is your chance to shine and show your expertise. Use headings and bullets to break up the text, as most people are reading your e-zine on-line. Breaking up the text makes your e-zine easier to read on the computer and results in higher readability. If you present readers with paragraphs and paragraphs of endless text, they will give up.

--> Any offers: After you've written your brilliant articles and established your expertise, you now have the opportunity to put offers for products or services in front of your readers.

--> Closing: As any good English teacher will tell you, you always need a conclusion.

--> Can Spam Requirements: You should include the following information in order to remain in compliance with the Can-Spam Act of 2003.

--> Contact information: Name, e-mail address and physical address.

--> Unsubscribe link: Besides being required, it's a customer-friendly option for your subscribers. If they really don't want to be on your subscriber list, you don't want them there either.

--> Copyright information: This really is YOUR material. Since you've written it, you can add a copyright.

Remember, by establishing consistency in the format and elements of your e-zine, you will have a great tool to building a loyal subscriber base.

Author's Bio: 

Dawn Shuler, Content Creator Extraordinaire, helps entrepreneurs and authors convey their deep message into compelling words, whether it's marketing material or a book, as well as to create powerful content to increase their credibility, visibility, and profitability. Her soul purpose is to help entrepreneurs unleash their authentic selves into their businesses through their content. She created the Writing From Your Soul system to help business owners connect more powerfully, reach more people, and make a difference. Download the free, 13-step system at