How seriously would you take someone whose email address is email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, or something similarly ridiculous or inappropriate?
Just as job interviews judge applicants on their email addresses, potential clients and customers will judge you and your business on your professional email addresses.
Having a professional email address attached to your own domain versus a standard email service provider like @gmail.com or @yahoo.com shows that you’re more than just you – you’re someone attached to a company or an organization. It gives you more credibility to be part of something bigger, to be backed by a group.
Not only does it help out your personal brand, but it also makes your business seem more legitimate since a certain level of organization and intent has to be achieved before a company has its own business-branded email system.
With a branded email you appear as a more serious competitor worthy of respect and fair treatment. It keeps your business from looking small, new, or inexperienced so larger companies or clients don’t feel that it’s okay to walk all over you.
The task of setting up a business-branded email is nothing compared to the valuable boost in perceived credibility that will follow – it’s cheap, easy, and definitely worth it.
It all ties into brand credibility – be it your personal brand or your business’ professional brand.
So How Important is Having a Professional Email Address?
Professional Email Addresses Build Authority
A professional email address is one taking the form of email@example.com instead of the generic firstname.lastname@example.org.
Creating a professional email to go along with your professional website helps you build an online presence for your brand or company. The email ties you to your company by making it a habit for the two names to appear together, and it also makes it easy for someone to look up your company’s domain name for more information because it’s right there in your email.
There’s a sense of trustworthiness in a professionally-branded email address.
Someone who receives an email from you with a standard @yahoo.com will interpret it as an email from an individual. While an email from you with your business address will look more like an email from a person who is part of a greater entity.
We’re social beings, and we’re more likely to trust a group than a stranger.
You’re less likely to be thrown into the spam folder with a branded email address – its connection with your own domain makes you look less suspicious than a generic free address since anyone can make one of those.
Get a business-verified email address and stay out of spam’s black hole by appearing (and actually being) legitimate.
Having your own system versus connecting to a larger one allows you to boost your business’ privacy and lets you back up your files instead of relying on an existing email service provider that could fail on you.
Be sure to always back up your files, content, and anything else you don’t want to lose.
Having trouble finding an address you like?
The rules are the same as with traditional job-hunter’s emails – keep it simple: use your name. By mixing around parts of your first, last, and middle names you can put together a simple and appropriate email address that also loosely identifies you: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and so on.
Branded Email Systems Boost Organization and Collaboration
By having your own professional email system with an awesome logo, you take control of your company’s organization. You can give new employees their own emails and monitor the inactive ones.
You can also separate the emails out into different departments or purposes for maximum convenience – there can be a firstname.lastname@example.org or a email@example.com.
Messages will automatically go to the right place and won’t need to be forwarded as much to make it to the right person in your business. Plus, the customer will know that it’ll be seen by the department they intended to contact.
Departmental emails also make your company look more stable and credible overall because even when different people move through the job position, the email stays the same.
Branded email systems also help encourage collaboration, as online office suites and existing providers often link up to other useful systems of tools related to email that will benefit your business.
Take Gmail, for example. The addresses are easy to set up and give you access to a ton of other things like Google Calendar for scheduling, Google Drive for storage, Google Hangouts for video conferencing, and many other apps and sites that are useful for professional, educational, and general collaborative purposes.
I can’t even tell you how many times Google Calendar has saved my life, or how many group projects were made infinitely easier through the collaborative use of Google Docs for group papers, and Google Slides for posters and presentations.
Many of my past organizations have used Google Sheets as a recruitment tool, budget sheet, payroll, sign-in sheet, or general information-gatherer. These (and those provided by other services) are great tools to take advantage of, and by setting up your own professional email system you can easily connect your team through them.
How to Set Up Your Professional Email Address
There are a few different ways you can go about setting up your business-branded email system:
- Use an existing email service provider – When you buy your website’s domain name, you’ll get the chance to make a business email that you can then redirect to your existing email account on Gmail, for example. You’ll be able to deal with all your emails (personal or professional) in one place while giving the first impression of an experienced, well-run business with a branded email.
Everyone will handle their work emails in the same familiar place they’re used to with the bonus of a professional email address. The downside is that if employees are all using different email service providers, there aren’t built-in collaboration tools to use. You’d also be opting out of the customer service usually provided with a separate email service, and the security of your own system to backup files, since you’d be relying on the existing email service provider. If you need any of these options, you’d have to use outside programs or office suite apps to supplement the business email connection between team members.
However, if everyone had the same provider like Gmail, you could take advantage of that and use the wide features already offered through the email service provider’s tools like Google Calendar, Google Drive, Google Hangouts, Google Docs, etc.
- Use your web host provider’s business email service –Whoever you bought your website domain name from likely has a service you can subscribe to for a low monthly fee to use their business email system (with extra costs if you want more storage space or additional features). It’ll often include customer service as well. While a convenient way to manage your professional emails, the system may be limited in features and functions compared to adapting an existing email service provider to your needs or acquiring an office suite for your business.
- Use an online office suite – You could use business suite tool packages like Google Apps for Work or Office 365 Small Business for your branded email needs. For different prices you can get as many of the features you need for your business email – some office suites will even let you pick and choose which tools you want to buy, too. Do you need synced email, online storage, secure file sharing, and document editing, but have no use for video conferencing tools? An office suite can give you all the online tools you need to manage your professional email address system, as well as your general online presence.
Professional Email Addresses for Your Business
Setting up a professional email address is an easy way to boost your and your business’ credibility.
It makes you look professional and trustworthy when emailing clients and makes it easy for people to trace back to your website domain for more information since it’s right there in your email.
If you don’t already have a professional email address, you should go set one up now.
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