Creating an email template in Outlook

How to create an e-mail Outlook template with attachments and pictures

Create a template in Outlook

With Template Phrases, you can instantly create a new template in Outlook. It can be a Plain Text, Rich Text or an HTML template, a Thank you letter or signature template, or any other custom text snippet.

Our Outlook add-in makes it possible to use macros for creating ready-to-paste templates with attachments, automatically fill BCC/CC or To fields, or require the Delivery/Read receipt. Read the info below to find out how to get a new template in Microsoft Outlook 2013, 2010-2003 and use macros to save time on emailing.

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Create a template in Outlook

If you need to create a new template, you can use one of the two ways: to get one using the existing email or add a template from scratch.

Replying to similar emails on a daily basis you are sure to have the text you can copy and paste to yet another typical email. Instead of this copy-paste routine, you can select the needed text fragment in the message body and save it in the list of your templates in a click.

One more way is to create an Outlook template from scratch using the New template option.

Make a new email template using a text snippet from an existing email

  1. Open the Outlook email that contains text for the new template.
  2. Select the text that you'd like to become a template. For example, if you want to create an Outlook signature template, select the corresponding part of text in your email. In case you need to create an HTML template in Outlook, your message should be in this format.
  3. Click the New template icon on the add-in's toolbar: Click on this icon to create a new template
    You can also right-click on the place in the templates tree where you'd like to have the new template and select the New template option from the menu. Right-click on the template tree and select the option to create a new template
    Tip. You can also use the Insert key to get a new template in Outlook.
  4. The selected text will be automatically populated in the New template dialog box. By default, the first line of your text becomes the template name. The selected text will automatically become a template You can edit the name so that you can quickly find the necessary template when you need it.
  5. Click Save and you will see a new template on the add-in pane.

If you'd like to create an Outlook template from scratch

  1. Open a new message window in Outlook so that you can see the add-in's pane.
  2. Click on the New template icon. Click on this icon to create a new template You will see a dialog box with two fields: the template name and its text. This dialog box lets you create a new template
  3. Enter the title for the new template into the Template name field. This can be a short summary that lets you quickly find the template when you need it. Enter the template name into this field
  4. Type the text of the template into the bigger field below. Type the template text into this field
  5. You can also add the necessary formatting. You'll find all basic formatting options on the toolbar at the top of the text box.
    Change text formatting by using the toolbar at the top You will also see additional formatting options like managing hyperlinks if you right-click on the template text.
    Change text formatting by using the toolbar at the top
  6. Click Save and you will see a new template in your template tree. Click OK to save the template

Below you will also find how to use a macro to create a template with attachment.


How to edit email templates

In this part, you'll see how to change a template if necessary.

  1. Select an email template in the templates tree.
  2. Press F2 key on your keyboard or the Edit icon on the Template Phrases toolbar. Make the necessary changes using the Edit option You can also right-click on the template and select the Edit option. Right-click on the template and select the option to edit it
  3. Make the necessary changes and click OK to save the template in Outlook.

How to use macros in your templates

Macros will help you in executing routine operations in Outlook. For example, they allow to create templates with attachments, so that each time you insert certain template in an Outlook message you don't have to add a particular file. Or using macros you can enter the same address into the TO field; there are many more useful things you can do with template macros:

  1. To insert a macro, select the template in the list and click Edit. It's also possible to add a macro when you are creating a new text pattern.
  2. Click on the Insert macros button at the bottom of the Edit template window. Open macros list by clicking this button
  3. Insert the macros you need into the template.
  4. Click Save in the editor window to save changes.

Here is a list of macros to choose from and descriptions of what they can do

  • The macro ~%ADDBCC= will paste the specified email address/es to the BCC field. If there are any emails entered, they will be kept.
  • ~%ADDCC= adds the necessary email to the CC field keeping any current addresses.
  • ~%ADDTO= enters an address you specify into the TO line. It will appear along with any current emails in this field.
  • With ~%ATTACHFILE= you can create a template with attachment to automatically insert a file each time you paste the template into Outlook. Once you insert this macro, you'll see the Windows Explorer window where you can browse for the file to be attached. After you select the file and click OK, the macro will contain the file path after =, e.g. :

    ~%ATTACHFILE=C:\Program Files\Add-in Express\AddIns\Template Phrases for Microsoft Outlook\readme.txt

    Now each time you paste this template into an e-mail message, the file will be attached and you'll get a confirmation window about it. You can disable confirmation if you like.
    Note. We recommend inserting this macro after the template text. Otherwise, please make sure you start a new sentence from a new line so that it doesn't interfere with the file path.
  • ~%WHAT_TO_ENTER[field label] macro prompts you to enter the necessary value every time you insert a template into an Outlook message. For instance, if you insert ~%WHAT_TO_ENTER [Name] into the template, each time you paste it you'll see a dialog box that will let you enter the name.

    Tip. You can even pre-populate possible values by listing them in square brackets separated by a semicolon; in this case you'll get a drop-down list with them, e.g.
    ~%WHAT_TO_ENTER [Template Phrases; Auto BCC; Attachment Alarm] Get a drop-down list with the values every time you paste the template Please note that the pre-populated text cannot contain more than 254 characters.
  • ~%ATTACHMENTS - Use this macro in Outlook template for inserting a list of attachments into the message text. Each time you use a template with this macro, all the attachment names will be listed in the message body.
  • ~%TO macro inserts the display name of a contact from the TO field into the of message body. E.g. you can start a template with "Hi ~%TO," and each time you insert it, the macro will be replaced with the recipient display name, e.g. "Hi James".
  • ~%BCC macro inserts the address(es) from the BCC field into the message.
  • ~%BEHALF_OF_NAME macro allows entering an email address to automatically send certain emails on behalf of another person.
  • ~%CC macro inserts the address(es) from the CC field into the email.
  • ~%CLEAR_SINGNATURE macro will be really helpful if you have certain signature pasted automatically, but there are several templates that require a different one. With this macro in your template, the current signature will be deleted and you will not need to do it manually.
  • ~%SUBJECT macro inserts the contents of the Subject field into the message.
  • ~%CLIPBOARD macro inserts the clipboard item into the message. Please note that this macro pastes only text, it doesn't work with pictures or graphical objects
  • ~%DATE macro inserts the current date.
  • ~%TIME macro inserts the current time.
  • ~%FILLTO= macro will automatically fill in the TO field with the email address you enter after =, e.g. ~%FILLTO=support@ablebits.com. Please note that any current email address will be deleted.
  • ~%FILLCC= = macro will automatically fill in the CC field with the email address you enter after =, e.g. e.g. ~%FILLCC=support@ablebits.com. All current addresses in this line will be removed.
  • ~%FILLBCC= macro will automatically fill in the BCC field with the email address you enter after =, e.g. ~%FILLBCC=support@ablebits.com. Any current BCC addresses will be removed.
  • ~%FILLSUBJECT= macro will automatically fill in the Subject field with the text you enter after =, e.g. ~%FILLSUBJECT=Sample Subject. Now each time you insert the template with this macro into an Outlook message, the subject will be set to the one you entered.
  • ~%FROM_ACCOUNT= macro lets you specify the preferred From address. It's possible to enter the email address manually, if it's not in your Account Settings. Please note that the behavior of this macro depends on your Outlook and Exchange settings.
  • ~%SELECTED macro is for similar e-mails with some text that may vary, like the product name, price, etc. Just highlight the text that needs to be used this time before inserting the template with this macro and ~%SELECTED is replaced with the selection. For example, instead of creating a number of templates like these:
    • Our Template Phrases for Microsoft Outlook is compatible with ...
    • Our Auto BCC for Microsoft Outlook is compatible with ...
    • Our Attachments Alarm is compatible with ...
    We create just one template:
    Our ~%SELECTED is compatible with Microsoft Outlook 2013, 2010-2003.

    So when we reply to a question about compatibility of the Template Phrases with Outlook, we copy the add-in's name from the customer's question, paste it to our reply message and highlight it.

    Then we double-click on the template and get:
    Our Template Phrases is compatible with Microsoft Outlook 2013, 2010-2003.
  • ~%INSERT_RECIPIENT_FIRSTNAME macro inserts the first name of the recipient if their contacts are saved in Outlook Contacts (the panel in the lower left corner of your Outlook).
  • ~%INSERT_RECIPIENT_FULLNAME macro inserts the full name of the recipient if their contacts are saved in Outlook Contacts.
  • ~%INSERT_RECIPIENT_LASTNAME macro inserts the last name of the recipient if their contacts are saved in Outlook Contacts.
    Tip.If you want to insert the recipient's name that is not in your Outlook Contacts, use the ~%TO macro.
  • ~%REQUEST_DELIVERY_RECEIPT macro will automatically request delivery receipt for your email
  • ~%SET_HIGH_IMPORTANCE macro will automatically set message importance to High.
  • ~%SET_LOW_IMPORTANCE macro will automatically set message importance to Low.

That is how you can create a template in Outlook 2013-2003, edit your templates and use macros in them. Whether you need a signature template or the one with attachment - our add-in can easily help you.

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