Blogs | Brad Poirier

Using a domain based email vs. an @gmail.com address

Should you use a gmail address or a name@yourdomain.com type?

Should my company use a gmail for email or my domain?
Business person typing an email
In my humble opinion, nothing screams "startup" company more than a business using a 'MyCompanyName@gmail.com'. Even louder of a scream is 'MyCompanyName@hotmail.com'. So you have website, a domain, but no email address using that domain name. A domain based email looks like this: info@yourwebsiteaddress.com or John.Smith@yourwebsiteaddress.com. So why use a domain based email and why should you use a gmail account instead?

Gmail vs. Domain Email - Fight!

An obvious benefit to using Gmail as your email source is that it's free. (They do have a paid Google Apps for Business which I'll explain later). Gmail is also very common. You probably use it for your personal email, so it was only natural to setup your business email that way. Use the same interface, same apps. I get it, you don't like change. Another benefit is that it's recognizable, people know Gmail and use it themselves. Also, they give you a ton of free storage space (up to 15GB for free plans) and can work with various other applications like Drive for storage sharing, Calendar, Contacts etc.

So why would you use a domain based email? I feel the biggest reason is your professionalism. I don't think it matters how small or large your business is. You want to maintain professionalism at every level, including your communication to your customers and potential customers and partners you may work with.

You know what's great about domain based email? Most of the time, it's also free. You just have to know what you're doing, or ask us to help you out . Your domain hosting company likely offers a free basic email to connect to your domain. Find out from your hosting company if this is offered. As part of all Breeze Sites, we offer up to 10 free email accounts using your domain name. What if your hosting company doesn't offer a free option? Well, you could just pony up the small fee, which is sometimes about $1/month. That's not a ton in the grand scheme of things.

The other option, and my preferred option is to use a separate email hosting service. There are two that I will cover here. One is free, and the other is a paid option.

Free email hosting option

My go to free email hosting is Zoho Mail . People have asked me multiple times a good free option, I answer every time with Zoho. You'd think I work for them. I really don't. I use them myself for a private domain and have set up customers using this service. Zoho's free plan now supports up to 25 free user accounts. It used to be 5, then 10, now it's up to 25. It supports Calendar, Tasks and Notes syncing as well. It also offers a very useful IMAP service and MS Exchange/Push Mail, so you can be instantly notified whenever there is a new viral cat video on youtube. It also integrates with one of my favorite cloud based services, Dropbox. For a FREE option, Zoho Mail is hard to beat.

Paid email hosting option

So maybe you need a little more than some free options. Again, I'm not endorsing any company here, just in my humble opinion, Google Apps for Work offers a robust email service along with a wealth of other features. Email is the main feature, and because it's from Google, it will use the same apps and screens you probably already know. You will get to use Gmail to login with, but with your own domain name. Think of Gmail at this point as the go between your domain email and wherever it's going. It's just handling the delivery for you.

You also get an upgrade to Google Drive, where you can store up to 30GB of data in a secured cloud storage space. You also get your own calendar, and Google Docs, which you can share and collaborate if you have multiple users. All for $5/month.

So, paid or free?

If I were you, and knowing nothing about you, other than you having a great taste in blog articles, I would choose one of the free hosting plans if you are a start up or small business. If you are an established small business or larger and need better sharing features, Google Apps for Work, or some other paid email option is the way to go.
< Back to Brad Poirier's blog