Post image for The new Gmail changes, Why they did it,  and what they mean to email marketers

The new Gmail changes, Why they did it, and what they mean to email marketers

by Jeremy Schoemaker on December 16, 2013 · 18 comments

If you are a Gmail user you have probably gotten the popup upon login that images are now enabled by default. This coincides with Gmail announcing a couple of weeks ago that they will be caching and serving the images from their CDN to speed up browsing email.

google images warning


You also have a option to disable this in your settings to go back to the “Ask me before displaying” just like the old Gmail setup.

default switch

Personally, I feel this is a new spam signal that Gmail will use to adjust their already great spam detection system.

The biggest single problem that Gmail has with spam is mass mailers (spammers)  is using 100% images that contain keywords that would be flagged as spam.  I am guessing they are trying to OCR (optical character recognition) but that is a monster in itself.

Also these spammers get around easy detection systems by sending from a slew of different IP addresses,  subject lines,  alt tags for images, and other items.

By caching these images Gmail can now use that as a signal when enough people report the email as spam and either not display the image,  flag all emails with that image as spam,  or even replace the image with a “this is spam” or something.

Many people have written various theories on this but only time will tell how its going to be implemented.

full disclosure

About the author...

– who has written 2858 posts on

Jeremy "ShoeMoney" Schoemaker is the founder & CEO of the ShoeMoney Blog, Elite Retreat Internet Conference, & the PAR Program. In 2013 Jeremy released his #1 Amazon Best selling Autobiography titled "Nothing's Changed But My Change" - The ShoeMoney Story. Jeremy currently lives in Lincoln Nebraska with his wife and 2 daughters.

Anna recommends you check out these amazing posts:

  1. shutterstock_68611039 How To Profit From Invading Your Users Privacy
  2. hackinggoogle How Hackers Are Using Google To Pwn Your Site
  3. conversion1 How 2 Split Tests Made Me Over $93,000


Shoemoney 1 Matt Cleary

Thanks for clarifying, I was wondering why the change happened but hadn’t given it much thought.

Shoemoney 2 Evan Ignacio

Yea but spam filters too often put the wrong kind of emails into their categories. As a marketer I’m seriously worried about how this will affect my ability ot reach my customers/buyers.

Shoemoney 3 Tessa

Good read. Thanks for sharing.

Shoemoney 4 Marisa P.

Thank you thank you thank for letting me know that I can turn the images off. I HATE that it automatically does it now. Yay! now I can change that.

Shoemoney 5 Sly

gmail has always been the best at keeping spam at bay, i trust what they are doing

Shoemoney 6 Clara

Thanks for clearing that up.

Shoemoney 7 Edwin G.

gmail is awesome

Shoemoney 8 Marc Flores

I’m sick of getting flagged as a spammer as soon as I find something taht works, I’m back to square one.

Shoemoney 9 Candice

Nice read

Shoemoney 10 Erik

Thanks for getting back to posting more content

11 appvsgame

I also got an notification from gmail about this. According to me it’s not a big change because in my 90% of gmail viewing I always go for basic html. I loved the old gmail and there is a option for showing and not showing images too

12 Patrick

Very nice


13 faisal

Change is difficult to accept, mainly in your email experience.

14 BestofBacklinks

Actually I had noticed it but didn’t give much attention to it. Nice info you have here. I have always loved Gmail.

15 Angelina

nice article..thanks for the updates…!!changes are always good but its hard to accept first…only difficulty is that..!!

16 Angelina

you really helped me..thanks again :-)

17 soft masr


18 All Top Tens

User Bandwidth and network connectivity speed is increasing day by day. Previously users used to have slower internet, and loading images by default would slow down the browsing significantly.
But now time changed, most of the users have adequate bandwidth to handle loading of images by default without compromising user experience.
I think this is a good move by Google.

Previous post:

Next post: