There are many varied opinions on how you should establish an email for your business. Some say you should never use a free email address as the main business address. When we are talking about free email we are talking about the addresses you can get from Google (Gmail), Yahoo, Hotmail, and yes even AOL. While I understand the logic behind it, I don’t necessarily agree with it. Most say, even if you don’t yet have a website you should still register a domain for your business and set up an email through that domain. It makes sense because instead of your email being something like firstname.lastname@example.org it could be something like email@example.com. It tends to help you look more professional and legitimate. It makes sense right? But is it really necessary when you are first starting your business when time and money are tight?
I don’t think so and here is why.
First, you can establish a professional looking email address even with a free email, for example, firstname.lastname@example.org. That looks professional right? It has the business name attached to a free gmail account. The important thing to remember about establishing a free email address is choosing the right name. You don’t want to use your weird looking gamer name attached to a free email for your business. Use your business name or some nice looking form of your business name for your main business email address. Keep it professional, easy to remember, and not weird.
Second, free emails are so much more convenient and easier to access. This especially true for Gmail accounts. It is so easy to check your daily emails with Google’s Gmail set up. In addition to that you can organize incoming emails separating junk mail, promotional mail, and normal mail into separate tabs and folders. With domain based emails you have to log into your host then log into your email, sort through ALL the mail instead particular categories, it’s just much less convenient. Gmail is there when you open up Google no need to necessarily log in unless you signed out from the previous time you opened it. I can’t say this is true for the others like Yahoo, Hotmail, and such, but it is very true for Google’s Gmail. Gmail also does a really good job of weeding out spam and junk mail ahead of time so you don’t waste time wading through the hundreds of junk and spam that are likely to come through each and every day. Not sure about the other free providers but I know Gmail does a good job and my experience with domain provided emails tells me that they are not good at weeding out spam at all.
Finally, Google is business friendly. That’s right, along with Gmail, Google has established many other convenient uses for business owners. For example in Google Drive you can share, sync, and edit files with other people. You can instant chat with co-workers and even do Google Hangout (Google’s version of Skype). They also have Google+ which is a social media outlet. You can also establish calendars for a variety of uses for both sharing or private use. All of these things can also sync up to your mobile devices. I know of no other program that offers email that can do all that for your convenience for FREE.
The important thing to remember about a business email address is that you check it daily and respond immediately to the legitimate emails you do get. It’s all about customer service, first and foremost.
Make sure you set up a signature line for all your email correspondence that includes:
- Your Name
- Your Business Name
- Mailing Address
- Physical Address (if different from mailing address)
- Website (if you have one)
When you show you are willing to share that information with the person you are corresponding with you appear legitimate and professional. It shows your a real person not some scam artist trying to make a quick buck. This applies whether you have a free email or a domain email.
While having a domain specific email is nice, in my experience, it is not necessary or always convenient or time saving. You just have to establish a good legitimate email address name that you will be able to check on daily with the least amount of inconvenience.
Thanks for taking a moment to read this post. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to post them in the comments section below.