Three easy steps to let Google handle yourdomain.com email
Category : Technology
Looking to upgrade your email storage space without changing your hosting plan or web host? Want to make sure you have a relatively spam free email experience? Letting Google servers handle your email could be a good solution. You set up Google to use gmail with your domain name suffix, so your emails will end with yourDomainName.com, while using Gmail.
The steps below will also work, if you are setting up email accounts for a new site.
Google apps allows you to create up to 10 free user accounts (7gb storage each), for your domain, on their server. If you are a non-profit or hosting an educational site, it’s 100 or so free email accounts.
Getting it all set up is relatively easy. A few of my clients were hesitant and I hope the points below help others who are similarly daunted.
Do a quick read through all the steps, before you get started on the Google Apps side of things.
1) Create the main email account for your domain on Google Apps: When you sign up for Google Apps, you can re-create an existing (on your current server) email address for your Google app email. Do this for ALL existing email accounts on your domain. These accounts via Gmail, will not become active until the MX records change (step 2) and propagate, making it highly unlikely that you will lose any email. Fear not :).
Click here to choose your option and sign up for the free plan (if that is the most appropriate). The rest of the process is made pretty easy with convenient instructions along the way. However, the following steps will summarize the procedure.
2) Change the MX (mail exchanger) records: Once you create the email account/s (you can start with one and then comeback to create others later), your domain provider will need to know to let Google servers handle all emails for yourDomainName.com. You notify the domain provider by changing MX records associated with yourDomainName.com.
Google has a documented the steps needed to change MX records for a number of domain providers, you should be able to find your domain provider on the list.
As you go through step 1 above, Google may even pick up the exact domain provider that hosts your domain and tell you how/where to change the MX records to point to Google servers.
Once this is done and before you can start using email@example.com email via Google servers, you wait for the new settings to be propagated across the web. This can take up to 48 hrs. Until this happens you will continue to receive your emails via your original domain provider.
3) Confirm the last step worked (send a test email from any other email service to firstname.lastname@example.org email).
Then, if you prefer to use an email client (instead of web browser) for emails, configure your email client (outlook etc.).
Also do this for your mobile phones.
As previously mentioned, your set up process (in Step 1) will walk you through most of the settings. However, it is less daunting if you have an overview of the process, before getting started.
Of course, letting Google handle emails may not be for you if you worry about giving the ‘do no evil’ machine, even more of your confidential information. That’s for another blog post though.