How to Use Your Domain Name with Gmail/Hotmail/Yahoo
A couple of weeks ago I published a post where I recommended to avoid free email services like Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo! when sending out business emails, because it makes you look unprofessional. It looks like I struck a nerve there, cause the discussion that followed in the comments was pretty heated.
Most people agreed with me. Some, however, said that they stuck to using Gmail/Hotmail/Yahoo! because the interface and overall user experience was so much better when compared to the email clients available with their domain name emails.
Guess what, you can use your own domain name with Gmail/Hotmail/Yahoo. That is, you can send and receive emails from an address like email@example.com from inside any of those free services, so problem solved. Here’s how to do it.
First of all if you are not using Gmail you are doing it wrong.
Jokes aside I am going to explain the process in Gmail (cause that is my cliente of choice), but I am pretty sure it is similar on other services.
Step 1: Inside the cPanel of your domain name create a forwarder to send all the email received by your firstname.lastname@example.org account to your email@example.com account.
Step 2: Inside Gmail open the “Settings”, then go to “Accounts and import”, and then click on “Add another email account you own”.
Step 3: Put your firstname.lastname@example.org email there, and follow the steps until Gmail says it will send you a confirmation code.
Step 4: That confirmation code should appear on your Gmail inbox (as you are forwarding all email on your email@example.com account to Gmail already). Put that on the confirmation box and that is it.
If you need more instructions, check out this tutorial on TechnetGR.
With this method you get the best of both worlds. You get to look professional with your firstname.lastname@example.org email address and you get to use Google’s state of the art email client (or Yahoo!, or Hotmail…).
24 Responses to “How to Use Your Domain Name with Gmail/Hotmail/Yahoo”
I’ve been using this system for ages and in fact I also import in another 5 email addresses on top of my main one. I run 2 businesses, one of which is bring a Virtual Assistant so I have email addresses that my clients have allocated to me as well. This way I can see them all in one go.
Plus one of the services I offer is to help people do this! It keeps you looking professional but lets you use all the great Gmail features and labs as well as plug-ins such as Rapportive and Boomerang.
How anyone uses any other system is amazing to me. They’re really missing out.
As @Steve Button pointed out, in this case the reply-to: and the sender: addresses will be your domain, but the from: address will still show as being GMail (or Yahoo or whatever).
So what you suggest here will not do any good, since to whomever you send an email, he/she will know that you’re still using an ordinary Gmail, Yahoo account, which will still make you look “unprofessional”.
What you’ll have to do is use Google Apps. That way you just use their reliable email servers, their awesome interface, tons of options and still send emails from your domain. Of course you’ll have to mess with the DNS settings and do some verification, but Google has very good straightforward instructions how to do it.
I personally use Google Apps on all of my domains and it rocks. The other good thing about Google Apps is that when you sign up you can use all of the Google products through that account. So for example for one particular domain (website) you can setup email, analytics, webmaster tools, adwords, adsense, google + page, and pretty much everything else.
You’ll have all services tied up to your domain and all of them accessible with one password, which of course in that case has to be very strong. The other positive thing is if you ever decide to sell that domain/website you can sell it together with all accompanied services in one package, which would be very convenient for both parties.
I started using google apps for my domain name email. The problem I have is with the paragraphs.
Knowing absolutely nothing about tech stuff, I say, cut and paste a letter I just wrote on Microsoft word into my gmail mail outgoing. It looks great but when it reaches the destination, its all over the play. Lines and far apart and not orderly.
Any newbie advice?
Really great and informative post…What I think that though we have to depend on 2 mail server but it’s worth for our business as well it really looks professional…thanks once again for this post…
I want to thank you for all the stuff of the last years. I read it all and iam also in your maillist – since 8 months 🙂
Thanks for all the great articles and excuse my poor english!
@Ammar, yeah it’s secure.
@DI, unfortunately you can’t cancel the domain, and selling it will be tough, so you pretty much just need to let it sit there.
@Richard Ng, in reality you will only be using the Gmail servers, so this won’t affect that.
Luis Bello (@lbellop)
You can do the same with Outlook.com, at least I did with my corporate email account.
Let’s try this out than, Seems great.
Great tip. I’ll try it right now.
Will there be hacking issue? Is it too secure ?
Hey Daniel…great post. This though crosses my mind every now and again. I have become so reliant on my yahoo email. This makes it so much easier thanks.
Hi, I’ve been doing it this way for years. As well as forwarding all my emails to GMail I also get the ISP to keep a copy in a local mailbox which I access via a mail client as a backup in case I lose access to GMail. Never had to use it though, so probably being over cautious. I set this up in 2003 or whenever it was that GMail started and wasn’t sure about how reliable they would be.
One thing worth bearing in mind though, the reply-to: and the sender: addresses will be your domain, but the from: address will still show as being GMail (or Yahoo or whatever).
If you want to avoid this, use Google for domains as mentioned in the comments above. It’s a little bit more hassle, but probably worth it for many. Personally I don’t think it’s worth it as I’m an IT contractor and what I have serves me just fine.
I have used Outlook Express, and now Windows Live Mail, to access my emails since about 2004 as the interfaces that my webhosts offers are rubbish and clunky. 🙂
Useful post. though we are also using Gmail for professional purpose but with the help of Google apps we are using our domain names.
Even your method seems to be very easy.
I didn’t read your previous post but i would like to tell you that I still prefer Outlook. I found it very professional and there are so many features in Outlook like the priority setting, mail personalization, organization, i am still a fan of outlook.
A better option would be to use Google Apps for Domains, which is something I have configured for my blogs.
This ensures you have the complete interface and features of Gmail, while using your own domain address.
Of course, it is a bit more work to get it running the first time around.
I am currently using what you mentioned about Gmail. It works great for me.
Thanks for sharing this information. I have been using this in yahoo. Yahoo permits you to fetch mails for other email addresses using POP. You are also able to send mails from your personal address within yahoo interface. That makes it really cool
Excellent tip Daniel. Currently, my email forwards to my Thunderbird client and I am fine with it. But the issue is, I don’t have an online backup of mails. What you pointed out could be a solution… I’ll see if I want to implement it.
BTW, I have a domain name that is unused. I closed a blog that the domain name was associated with. Can I do something with that domain? I mean, is there a website to list and sell that domain (if someone shows interest)? (Like Flippa to sell a site). Also, is it possible to cancel the domain name now and get back the money on a pro-rata basis?
Really informative article ……
Thnx again for sharing useful info…
Well thank you so much. Was so intrigued when i saw this tittle and it turned out to be so useful. personally you saved me a great deal of trouble. Im so going to use this.Thank you so much
Nice tips, I am aware of the email forwarding part but not about setting our own account within gmail (i.e. step 2 onwards).
Having said that, just wonder would this means we are having a higher risk of emails delivery issue as we are now dependent on 2 email servers’ response/up time. Even though I must say that nowadays the free email services’ up time are quite stable. Any take on this?
That is one way of doing it. I prefer to use Google Apps. It is free for up to 10 accounts. Takes a little more to setup but the you can login at your owm domain like mail.yourdomain.com.
Great if you have more than one person you need an email address for as well.
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