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Published Date: 02 - 22 - 2016

Change is coming. The days of FREE email for your business is about to be a thing of the past

I despise email. I really do. More often than not when a client calls WebDuck Designs with an issue it is email related. Lately the volume of phone calls related to email issues has greatly increased. It was getting to the point where we were spending most of our day trying to find out why email just wasn't working. Some of the problems include the following:

  • Clients are having their emails blocked or marked as spam when they email their clients that have received email from them for year with no issues
  • Email recipients are getting bounce back messages from our clients when replying to their emails.
  • Emails mysteriously "disappearing"

Unfortunately we could not find a solution for these problems that would work however we did find the cause which is quite disheartening.

Sometime around the end of 2015 and the beginning of 2016 the largest blacklist providers began marking emails being sent from "web servers" as potential spam. In short a blacklist provider is what your internet service provider uses to determine if incoming email is malicious, suspicious or spam. By marking emails being sent from "web servers" business everywhere began to have a ton of email problems as described above and businesses are being forced to move their email to an email exchange server or what is commonly known as a premium email provider. Two of biggest email premium email providers are Microsoft Office 365 and Google Apps. Amazon just recently entered into the premium email arena through their popular AWS platform.

The concept of paying for email is alien to a lot of people. Since the beginning of the internet we have been trained that email is free and it comes with our domain name or comes with our hosting provider or even is a standalone free email account like Hotmail or AOL so I am NOT looking forward to telling our clients that they will soon have to pay for email.

What does it cost? Premium email providers all have the same payment structure. Each of them charges per email address per month or per year. In the case of Office 365 it is $5 a month per email address ( $60 a year ) and Google Apps is $10 a month per email address ( $120 a year ). It doesn't sound like much but if you have a company with 20 or more email accounts you are looking an additional $1,200 a year or more just for email.

Now that we know the why and we know how much let's look at the positives of switching over to a premium email provider. As an example we will use Microsoft Office 365 since that is who we use and it's also who we recommend to our clients. The most important and obvious benefit to using Office 365 for email is no more email problems. Office 365 is NOT a web server. Instead it is an email exchange server.  The yearly fee for Office 365 is pennies on the dollar when you think of how much business you might have lost because due to email issues.

In addition to your email working correctly again, Office 365 also has the added benefit of a very simple transition. For our clients that are moving over to Office 365 the only thing required of them is a list of email addresses and passwords. We handle the account creation and dns settings on the server. On Saturday night we initiate the change and on Monday morning our client can begin using their Office 365 email without losing any of their important emails.

Other advantages of Office 365 are as follows:

  • Mobile Web App to use with your mobile devices
  • Improved virus and malware protection to help keep your computers safer
  • Since your email and website are separate, one can go down and not affect the other
  • Office 365 has an integrated calendar
  • Your email is accessible via any computer
  • Cloud based file storage for easy file sharring


* WebDuck Designs has no affiliation with Microsoft. Pricing is subject to change.

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