How to put a .gif image in an Outlook 2016 / 2019 email body or signature?

Last update: August 2018

Applicable to: Outlook 2019, 2016, 2013; 2010; 365. Windows and MAC OS X.

Here’s a question we got from a reader:

I would like to add an animated file into an Outlook message that i want to send to a friend having her 50th birthday. Not exactly sure about to go about pasting the animated gif image into the message. Any help is appreciated!

Inserting an animation to Outlook

The process is pretty simple, we’ll explain it using Outlook 2016, although you can implement this procedure using Microsoft Office version 2010 and up. Note that you are not only able to embed animations (being gif, swf files) into the content of the email you’ll be sending, but also to add those gifs into your Outlook custom signature.

Special Bonus: Download the Free PDF version of our Outlook 2016 Tips and Tricks guide.
  1. Navigate to your Outlook message.
  2. From the Ribbon, hit Insert.
  3. If you have already your animated .gif file stored in your personal computer,hit Pictures.
  4. If you would like to search for a graphic on a web browser, Facebook, Twitter etc’, hit Online Pictures. Note that you might be prompted to provide your login credentials to access online resources. Note that in this case, the animation will be visible if the message recipient is connected to the web.
  5. Once your graphic file is found, select it and hit Insert again.
  6. Once the file is inserted, you are able to resize and format it as needed (using the Format menu).

Additional Notes

  1. In a pretty similar fashion you are able to insert animations into Word, PowerPoint and Excel.
  2. If you are a business user, note that there might be cases that Exchange servers of your email recipients might remove your animation from the email body, as they might see it as a potential non-secure content.

Recommended next steps

  • Microsoft Office 365 now includes the latest Office 2016 version. If you are running on outdated Office version, you might want to check out Office 365. Sign up to get access to your favorite Office programs and to 1 TB data for every registered user.
  • Got a related question? Look into our guide on how to get your questions answered or leave us a comment.

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