Free Business Email Address: Where To Get One And How To Set It Up

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free business email addressIn our last article we continued our series on how to start a successful business with a look at how to setup a website for your small business in 4 easy steps. Now that you have a website it’s time to setup your free business email address, which is the topic of today’s article.

How to Get a Free Business Email Address

There are 2 primary ways that we are aware of to get a free business email address.

  1. By signing up with a free account through Zoho.
  2. Through the company that hosts your website. (we recommend Godaddy for website hosting)

Below I walk you through the exact steps you need to take, starting with Zoho.  After I walk you through how to set up your free business email address using Zoho, I walk you through the steps to take to setup a free business email using Godaddy or another hosting company.

How To Get A Free Business Email Address From Zoho.com

Zoho is the last remaining service that offers truly free business email accounts without having to purchase any other parts of their service.  In fact they offer up to 10 free business email accounts, each with 5 GB of data.  That should be plenty for the average small business owner.

In order to have a business email you will however first need to have a domain name (ie www.yourbusiness.com)  We recommend purchasing your domain name from Godaddy, which will cost you around 12.99 per year.

Once you have your domain name you can head over to Zoho.com and sign up for a free account. After logging in to your free Zoho account, just follow the steps below to setup your free business email address.

(I am using Godaddy in my examples, but the steps should be similar for wherever you bought your domain name.)

Once you have logged in to your free Zoho account, click The Mail Icon Towards the bottom of the Zoho apps page.

Zoho Email App PageOn the next screen select the Lite plan which gives you up to 10 free business email inboxes.

Zoho Email Domain Setup

On the next screen you can add your business domain (ie. www.yourbusinessname.com). For this example I am setting up a personal email for a domain that I own, davewaring.com. If you don’t already have a domain name you can purchase one from Godaddy for $12.99 per year.

Zoho Domain Add

Once you have added your domain, you need to verify that you own that domain.  In the next screen that comes up make note of the CNAME and Destination.

Zoho Free Email CNAME

Once you click ok on the above screen you need to head over to Godaddy (or wherever else you bought your domain) and verify the domain.  After logging into Godaddy you will see the below screen.  Click the “Manage” button beside domains.

Godaddy Domain Manager

Find the domain you want to use for your business email and click on it.

Godaddy Domain Manager

On the next page that comes up, click the DNS file tab, and then click add record.

Godaddy Free Email DNS Manager

In the window that comes up next enter in your CNAME and Destination that you made note of from zoho above.

Godaddy Add Zone

Don’t forget to click save!

save email dns record

 

Now head back over to Zoho and click Verify:

Zoho Mail Verify

In the next window you can setup up to 10 free business email addresses:

setup your free business email

Once you have all your users and groups (groups allow you to email multiple people in your organization at once) created you can change your MX records.  To do that you need to go back to the DNS Zone file at Godaddy ust like you did when you added the CNAME above.

Godaddy MX RecordsScroll down to the MX Records section and delete any MX Records listed:

delete email mx records

Now scroll back up to the top and click the add record:

Add MX Records

We need to add 2 MX records with the same information that I have listed in the screenshots below:

Add Email Zone Record

Then add the second one:

Zone Record


That’s it! It generally takes around 30 minutes for these changes to take affect, at which point you can head back over to Zoho and start sending and receiving email from your new business email address.

How To Setup A Free Business Email Account With Godaddy (or another web host)

Godaddy, who is our recommended web hosting provider, provides 100 free business email addresses when you purchase a basic hosting plan from them.  That costs $3.99 per month, and also comes with a free domain name (ie www.yourbusiness.com) for 1 year.

Get A Free Business Email With Your Godaddy Hosting Account

To locate your free email, login to your Godaddy.com account and click the my accounts button. This will bring up a page with several options you can select, one of which says “email”.

Godaddy Free Email Launch Screen

On the page that comes up after clicking the launch button, you will see a “create button” at the top.  Click that button next:

create free godaddy email

After clicking create, a window will appear where you can choose your free business email address and select a password to login.

godaddy email setup 2

After clicking create on this page it will take about an hour for the email to be setup and ready to use.  If you are going to use the Godaddy email system then you are ready to go, simply login to your account here.

How to manage your business email account using Gmail

If you host your website with our recommended host Godaddy, then they give you 100 free business email addresses.  Godaddy has their own email client, however it is pretty clunky.  That’s why we recommend managing your business email through Gmail.  It offers better organizational features and you also get other free tools like google drive and google calendar.   If you have free business email from Godaddy or another webhost, and would like to manage your business email through the gmail interface, follow the instructions below.

Login to your gmail account (if you don’t already have a free gmail account register here).  In the upper right hand corner you will see a small box with a picture of a gear. Click that and then select “settings”.

gmail settings

On the page that comes up next click the accounts tab and then “add a pop3 mail account you own”.

pop3 email account settings

In the window that comes up next enter the email address you just setup with Godaddy as the username, the password that you chose when you setup your email with Godaddy, and pop.secureserver.net in the “pop server” field.

pop3 business email setup

After clicking “Add Account” you will be asked if you want to be able to send email as your new email.  Select yes.

send mail as

In the next window that comes up uncheck “treat as alias”.

treat as alias

In the window that comes up next enter smtpout.secureserver.net for the SMTP server, change the port to 25 and then enter the same username and password again for the email you setup with Godaddy.

smtp 2

After clicking “add account” you will be sent a verification email to your Godaddy account.  Login to your Godaddy email account and click the verification link.  Once you have done that you will no longer need to login to Godaddy, all your work email correspondence can be done from your gmail account.

How to set up your business email signature:

 If you are using Godaddy for your business email inbox, you can setup your email signature by logging into your email account and clicking “settings”, then “personal Settings”.  Then just select the signature tab and enter the email signature that you would like to show.

 If you are using gmail, then you can also setup a signature which will only be used when your business email is selected.  To do this click the settings gear in the upper right hand corner.  On the general tab at the bottom, there is a section that says signature.  Choose your business email address from the drop down and enter in the email signature that you would like to show on your emails.

How to get your business emails on your mobile phone.

If you are using Godaddy to manage your emails then the easiest way to get them on your mobile phone is by downloading the Godday mobile app, which is available free in all the app stores for the major types of phones.  Just login using the same login as you use on your desktop with no additional work required.

 If you are using Gmail then the easiest way is to use the Gmail app which is also available for download in all the major app stores. Just login with no additional setup required.

If you would like to use the native email app on your phone I have included links with instructions on how to set that up for the major operating systems below:

I hope you found this article helpful. If you have questions about setting up your free business email address, drop me a comment below.


More Guides To Help You Get Started

How To Build A Small Business Website
How To Choose A Domain Name
Using A Do-It-Yourself Website Builder
Get The Perfect Business Card
Get Help Starting Your Small Business

Comments (57)

  1. said on

    Thanks Dave for taking time to organise this useful info. Priceless!
    Sorry for playing Oliver Twist here by asking for more.
    I am not at the stage were i need to change my MX Records.
    Problem is, if i read the info correctly, i should do this after opening all the emails i will need for the business.
    At the moment i have 5 emails, will it be possible to add more emails at a later time after Changing my MX records?

    Thanks a great deal Dave.

    Ambrose

    • said on

      Hi Ambrose,

      Thanks for reading and for the comment! Changing your MX records should not affect your ability to create new emails so you should be able to add more emails without issue.

      Hope that helps.

      If you have any other questions let me know!

      Best Regards,
      Dave

  2. said on

    Great info, Dave.

    And so in summary,
    transferring the management of my GD email account to Google/Gmail, allows my email recipients to continue to see my original GD email address-

    (I’m just actually using Gmail to send it.) right?

    One other question:

    The purpose of exploring this further (for me, anyway) is due to the fact that one of my business interests uses free gmail now, to send permission-based email follow-ups to prospective clients, after a phone call was made.
    I could be wrong, but I believe my entire credibility goes right out the window once they see I’m using a free gmail account- as opposed to a branded email address linked to an actual domain -which I don’t have for this business.

    Can you suggest any small-biz-affordable options for email communicating with clients;
    one where a recipient’s concern is relieved, regarding the origin of an email message?

    (Marketing email Response rates are already LOW, but sending from gmail, even after a phone call was made) has dropped my rates to zero.)

    PS: Services like constant contact, mail-chimp, and other similar service providers require opt in verification from recipients before a list can be sent to….
    However, the busy, irritable, small business owners I engage as a rule refuse to respond to the opt in request itself: so those services are out…

    So does that mean I’m just stuck trying to do business with limited bandwidth, crappy email interfaces, and almost zero email testing and formatting options?
    If first impressions is one’s only chance to make an impression; then I’m ______ed!
    We rely on successful telephone communication as an introduction over here, but trust and assurance turns to doubt and wariness once they receive my tacky-looking emails, sent from a free service.

    • said on

      Hi Earnie,

      Thanks for reading and for the comment!

      Yes that is correct the steps I outline above allow you to use an email with your business domain ie Earnie@yourbusiness.com from the gmail interface.

      Regarding your question I am not sure I am following. If you follow the steps I have outlined above you would not be using a free gmail address, you would be using your business email address.

      Let me know if I am confused on something or if there are any other questions.

      Best Regards,
      Dave

  3. DONALD said on

    Hi Ambrose,
    Very many thanks for this educative piece. It’s indeed helpful.

    I acquired a domain name through Google from Godaddy in attempt to create business email address but, I wouldn’t like to continue. Since then I have been lost and can’t use the domain name elsewhere because I can’t verify it.
    I would like to have control over it, verify and manage the domain name.
    Please I would appreciate your guide.

    • said on

      Hi Donald,

      My pleasure. Can you give a little more detail on what the issue is that you are having with Godaddy? I have all my domains with them and have been able to setup emails without issue using the steps outlined in the above guide.

      Let me know and I will be happy to try and assist further.

      Best Regards,
      Dave

  4. Naomi said on

    Hi I’m trying to follow your instructions about setting up an email address. I have the domain from Godaddy and went into Zoho.com but am unable to set up a business email address in the way you state.

    Please help

    Regards

    Naomi

    • said on

      Hi Naomi,

      Thanks for reading and for your comment. If you can give me a little more detail on the problem that you are having and where you are getting stuck I will do my best to help.

      Thanks
      Dave

  5. Nitin Verma said on

    I m not able to verify the email . The Alerts comes that validating MX records . So plzz help me to find out a solution .

  6. Daniel Garcia said on

    Which of these two will happen if I switch from a paid email hosting from GoDaddy to a free business email from Zoho?

    A) Will I lose the ability to use the email address that I’m already using. Real life example, my email is “d.garcia@ctsol.us” currently hosted by GoDaddy. If I can’t reuse this address I will have to create something like “daniel@ctsol.us” in order to use Zoho

    or

    B) Can I continue using the same “d.garcia@ctsol.us”

    • said on

      Hi Daniel,

      Thanks for reading and for the comment.

      You will not lost eh ability to use the email address that you are already using and can continue using the same address. However there may be a few minutes of downtime when you change the mx record to Zoho.

      Hope that helps. If there are any other questions let me know.

      Best Regards,
      Dave

  7. Nikhil said on

    Hi Dave you have explained fantastic step but its not working for me I owned domain from Godaddy its doesn’t let me verify my domain,the message appeared as “We are unable to verify you as the owner of the domain.
    Please try the other methods and if you still have trouble, contact us at support@zohomail.com
    I have tried other method still no luck
    Could you please help me on this.
    Many thanks.

      • Nikhil said on

        Thank you for your quick reply, as per guide step I tried with CNAME method didn’t work then I have tried TXT and HTML method but no luck all the time verification failed message appears, please help me on this.
        Thank you.

        • said on

          Hi Nikhil,

          Unfortunately I am not sure what the issue is here. Have you reached out to Zoho support? Sorry I could not be of more help on this one.

          Thanks
          Dave

  8. Katie said on

    Hi David

    I use Bluehost and through your information above I set up a new email address for my business. I then tried to link it to my gmail account but when I get to the add email account you own box, and I fill in the username and password like you prompted, it says ‘server denied POP3 access for the given username and password’?

    Any idea why? Any help is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks

    Katie

    • said on

      Hi Katie,

      Thanks for reading and for the comment. For Bluehost try the following for the pop server address: mail.yourdomain.com. So for example if the domain you bought from bluehost was bobsshoes.com, then you would enter mail.bobshoes.com in the pop server field.

      Does that help?

      Best Regards,
      Dave

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