Running a business can be expensive so anywhere you can save money while still getting the best for your business is a challenge.
I know that feeling, even more so when it came to needing an email provider that could do everything I wanted at a price my business could afford. I needed an email provider that could sync my emails AND calendar while I was on the go, so I never missed an appointment or important email.
I must’ve spent months looking for an email account that suited me best and allowed me to have it associated with my domain because any business that still uses @gmail.com or @hotmail.com need to understand how unprofessional it looks.
To help save you time looking, especially as it might be something you’re not an expert in. I have selected what I think are the free options, the pro’s and con’s and overall what I selected (and if I use it).
FYI – I have only selected email providers that allow your companies domain to be linked with it.
IMAP which stands for Internet Messaging Access Protocol (yeah, I know a mouthful!) is often free and the basic standard for email marketing.
There isn’t much to tell on this one as it does exactly what it says on the tin.
It comes with any standard hosting service and unlike POP3 it allows you to use multiple devices to check your emails on.
- Allows you to sync on multiple devices
- Emails are stored on your hosting server
- Sent emails stay on the hosting server so you can review them on any device
- Sometimes restricted by mailbox size
- Doesn’t allow you to sync calendars or notes
Formally known as Google Apps, this is Google’s own email providing service which is built in the same interface as Gmail so anyone who has used this before will be comfortable using it. It also comes with access to Google apps like Google Calendar, Google Drive, Google Hangout and much more.
It allows you to set up multiple alias domains at no extra cost, for example, you can have firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com which aren’t real mailboxes but both will receive an email for you to view and reply back to via your main email account.
Another two good features of G Suite are, Google Drive you can set up a folder area for your team to easily share documents and designs for an important project, along with G Suite for Outlook which allows your “Gmail” email address to work on Outlook if you prefer Desktop software to web browser software.
- Access to range of Google apps
- Stored on Google’s servers which are extremely secure (watch a news story appear now)
- Emails, Calendars appointment and Drive files are synced across any device.
- Basic is restricted on size of drive which can hamper designers who have large files
- Cost per email account (we believe standard info@ & contact@ should be free)
There are two plans to get you started which is Basic which comes with 30GB of space and Business which comes with unlimited space and you get alerts when a file is changed inside Google Drive.
What used to be known as Microsoft Exchange, it has gone under a dramatic change over the last few years to compete with the likes of G Suite and other upcoming email providers.
Office 365 now runs in the cloud and comes with a truckload of apps and services which include the Microsoft Office suite and OneDrive, which like Google Drive allows you to store your files to the cloud and access from anywhere.
The email account allows for a whopping 50GB of space meaning it should take you a good number of years to use all that space up!
- Access to Microsoft Office
- 50GB of email hosting
- Everything is synced across any device and connects perfectly with Windows.
- To get email hosting you can’t start with Basic and must sign up Premium
- One license only covers 5 phones, 5 tablets, and 5 PCs or Macs per-use
Outlook 365 basic package doesn’t come with domain connected meaning you need to have the Premium package to get firstname.lastname@example.org
Other notable mentions
Zoho is similar to G Suite but unfortunately doesn’t come with the same amount of features, but it does have it’s own which shouldn’t be ignored!
Another great feature with Zoho is that it’s free for any starting business and allows for 25 users.
Put brilliantly by themselves, they offer “simple hosted email or a private Exchange server” meaning you get your emails stored on a super-fast server. However, to get it to sync to other devices, Rackspace say you need to upgrade and it doesn’t come with the range of apps that Office 365 and G Suite offer.
Host it yourself
For those who love technology and computers, you can always get up your own email server where you can download open source software such as Roundcude and Zimbra. It allows you to have more control over the server but like before lacks the apps the others offer.
What do I use
Me personally for my business, I use G Suite. I found it’s business package to be a reasonable price and offers a range of apps and features you can’t ignore. Having files stored on Google Drive allows me to access them from everywhere and since it’s from Google you can save a tab in your browser on your computer and access it again on your mobile when you’re relaxing with your family.
For me, G Suite offers exactly what I need at a price I feel my business can afford.
If you are interested in G Suite, get in touch as I can offer a discount to help get you started.
If you want to chat further, follow me or Twitter and let me know which ones you prefer.
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