When it comes to starting a business, we try to do things as cheaply as possible. This new business isn’t generating any money yet so we don’t want to spend money on things we don’t need to.
Many people do this by using a free email provider such as Gmail or Outlook and think this is fine.
I personally think it looks unprofessional to use a free email address for a business. It is better to use firstname.lastname@example.org than to use email@example.com but only just. The best option would be firstname.lastname@example.org, it is both personal by using your name, as well as professional by using your business name.
Why I think you should buy a domain
I think it also shows a level of commitment to the business. Although domain names are very cheap to buy now, when I see a business owner hasn’t invested in their domain I have to question how committed to the business they are? Once you buy a domain name, you can not only use it for your email address, you can also build your own website. A basic 3 Page website with a Homepage, About Us and Contact Page, is much better than no website at all. Even if you mostly sell on Facebook, Instagram or just at local markets, your website is your home on the web where potential customers can find you.
What if I change the business name?
I think too many people get caught up in the naming of the business and are constantly thinking if they find a better business name then they will do better in business. Therefore they don’t commit to the name as they may be changing it in a year or two.
Unless you pick a really bad name like Not the Best Donut Shop, I don’t think the name is going to stop the business from success. It is less about the name and the emotional connection behind the name. So just pick a name, your customer (Not just you) love, and just go with it. Commit to building a brand around the name, buy the domain and set up an email address that reflects the business brand.
How much will a branded business email cost?
There are a few options when it comes to your email address. These different options will cost different amounts.
You will need these 3 things:
- Domain Name
- Mail Client
The first thing you need is a domain name. This is the businessname.com part of the email address and can be used for both the email as well as a website.
For hosting there are 2 main options I recommend.
The first option is good if you are trying to keep costs low and would also like a website. This option is to use a web host such as Blue Host where you can host both your website and email address all in one fee. This will be approx $5/month depending on the deal and how many months in advance you pay.
The second option will cost a little more as you will pay for the web host separate to the mail host. This option uses G Suite (like Gmail) to host the email side of your business and is more powerful than the other option. You get the power search ability of Google, Cloud Storage for documents and spreadsheets as well as a great web interface for your mail client. This has a monthly fee of approx $9 and again can be cheaper the longer you commit to it.
For a discount of 20% off your first year, simply contact us for a coupon code.
We currently use our web host for our smaller websites where we don’t get many emails each month, and G Suite for our main website where we need the power offered by Google.
This really comes down to personal preference on how you like to receive and send an email. Most smartphones have a mail client build in such as Apple Mail, or many other free or paid apps. You can also use MS Outlook if you have the Office package of programs. If you choose to use G Suite then you can either use the web interface like Gmail (the most powerful option) or you can add your G Suite hosted email address to Apple Mail or Outlook just like any other email address.
I know it can be tough to spend money on things when there is a free option, but when it comes to a business you need to commit and invest in it. A professional branded email address can go a long way in showing your level of professionalism and is often one of the first touchpoints a potential customer has when contacting you.
If you need help in setting up a branded email address feel free to reach out to us. We can set this up for you so you just need to enjoy the benefits.