While businesses have many options available for free email accounts, these services do come with risks. It is one thing to have a personal email account on a service like Gmail, but using such services for business purposes is not advisable.
As you evolve your business, you will begin to see what an important role email plays in your operations. Not only will your business need an email address where customers can send queries, concerns, comments and other thoughts, but you will also need individual email addresses for your employees. But why is hosted email a good option for these accounts?
First we will assess some of the risks associated with free email accounts.
Free email services are going to make your business a massive target for spammers. Not only do you get spam email if you accidentally use your free email account on a website, but your email provider will be selling your address to spammers. You will start to notice many ads and other intrusive emails. While those can be put into the spam folder, it is still a nuisance you would rather do without.
When you are using a free email account through Gmail, AOL or Hotmail, you will find that your archiving ability is limited. Searching for specific words, phrases or email address among archived email is very difficult when you are using a free email account.
Lack of Customer Support
If something goes wrong with your account, you are going to have a hard time figuring out what to do. You may have some luck with customer support, but you will have to do with online chats or emails as the form of communication.
Those are the issues that we often notice businesses encounter with free email accounts. But what other benefits does hosted email offer?
If you are emailing a client, customer or prospective employee with an email address that has gmail.com or hotmail.com at the end, you automatically make a worse impression on that person. Businesses that want to put across a professional image should have an email address with their domain name.
For instance, you will want your email address to look something like this: [email protected]. When you send emails with that address, people will know you are a part of that business, and it makes the right impression.
Not only does the domain name ensure that you are portraying a professional image, but it also gives you branding opportunities. Whoever gets an email through that address will make a note of the @businessname.com at the end. They will instinctively begin to remember your company’s domain, and that is what you want.
While major email sites like Gmail are not going away anytime soon, other free accounts are less long-lasting. For instance, you can get free email accounts through your internet provider. But when you change providers or move, you may lose your email address. With hosted email, you know that you are going to keep the same account for decades if necessary.
With a hosted email provider, it is very easy to create segmented email accounts for the various departments within your company. For instance, human resources, billing, shipping, customer support, marketing and other departments have their set email accounts.
And when you have all these accounts set up on your Microsoft Exchange Server, managing everything is effortless. You have the ultimate control over your email, and you are able to segment the emails sent to your accounts based on the department or employee that is being contacted.
It is tempting to go with free email options, but you get so much more with hosted email. A business that wants to build a reputation should always steer in the direction of a quality hosted email provider.