A custom email address is one that uses your own domain name, such as email@example.com. It not only creates a professional appearance, but it builds consistent branding and trust. It’s also surprisingly easy to create. All you have to do is get a domain and an email host, and connect your custom email address to the email platform of your choice (e.g., Gmail, Outlook, or Apple Mail).
The easiest way to create a custom email address is to get your domain and email hosting directly through the same platform, such as Google Workspace. This way you won’t have to buy a domain separately and manually connect it, eliminating the headache of configuring DNS servers and coming with the added benefits of top-notch email security and productivity and collaboration tools. Get started with Google Workspace.
Here’s how to set up a custom email address in three steps:
1. Get a Domain Name
To create a custom email address, you first need a custom domain name (e.g., yourbusiness.com). Purchasing a domain name is simple and can be done in just a few steps. However, you can get a domain from a variety of sources, and which way is right for you depends on which email hosting service you plan to use, and whether or not you also plan to build a website that uses your domain name.
Here are the best ways to get a domain name based on how you plan to use it:
- Business email-only: If all you’re looking for is a custom business email address and only need a domain name, you can get it through one of the best domain name registrars, such as Google Domains, for around $12 per year. Alternatively, purchase it directly from providers like Google Workspace or Microsoft 365 to reap the benefits of having your domain automatically connected to your email host.
- Business email and a WordPress website: If you also plan to build a website, your best option is to get a free domain directly through a web hosting provider like Bluehost. For as little as $2.95 per month, you get web hosting, a free domain, and up to five free custom email addresses. Additionally, this eliminates the need to manually connect your domain to your web host, making it the faster and easier option for small teams.
- Business email and an all-in-one website builder: If you plan to create a professional website yourself, without any web design experience, then choose one of the best website builders for beginners, such as Squarespace, which includes a free domain.
For more assistance, get step-by-step instructions on how to register a domain name.
2. Connect to Your Email Provider
How you connect your domain to your email host depends on where you registered your domain name. If you registered a domain name through an all-in-one domain and email hosting service like Google Workspace, you’ll simply follow the remaining prompts and the work is done for you. On the other hand, if you registered your domain through a web hosting service, site builder, or another third-party service, you may need to take additional steps.
For example, if you got your domain as part of your web hosting plan, you need to navigate to your web hosting provider’s instructions on how to set up your new business email address. For most, you will see an option labeled “Email” from within your account dashboard. Follow the prompts to set up your custom email address.
From there, all you need to do is decide how you would like your email address formatted. For help deciding which is right for your business, learn more about choosing a professional email address.
3. Connect to Your Favorite Third-party Email Host (Optional)
If you got your domain name through a web hosting provider, you can connect your email to a third-party email host like Gmail or Apple Mail (and yes, your email will still be free). The exact process for doing this differs with each email platform, so choose your desired email host from the list below to get step-by-step instructions on how to connect your free business email to one of the leading email platforms.
For example, here’s how to connect to Gmail:
To get started, you’ll need to first log in to your Gmail account. If you don’t already have one, you can quickly create a free Gmail account here. After logging in to your new or existing Gmail account, click on the gear in the top right corner and select “Settings.”
Navigate to the “Accounts and Import” tab at the top. Then click “Add a mail account.”
This will open a new window where you can enter the email address you just created; we are using Bluehost in this example. Enter your full business email address and Bluehost password in the window. You do not need to add POP server information. Once completed, click “Add Account.”
Important: Be sure to enter your full business email address in the Username field, including your domain (firstname.lastname@example.org).
You have now connected your Bluehost email address to Gmail; this means all email sent to your Bluehost address will land in your Gmail folder. However, you also need to update Gmail so that you can send email from this address too.
On the following screen, Bluehost will ask if you want to set this up. Select “Yes” and click “Next.”
The next screen prompts you to verify your email address. Verification is required to ensure that you are the owner of your domain and the email addresses connected to it. To complete verification, enter your full email address and your Gmail password again. Gmail will send a verification code to your Bluehost email address.
Head back into your Bluehost account. Select “Email Manager” and click “View Inbox.” You should see an email from Google with your verification code. Copy this code and enter it into the appropriate field in Gmail. Click “Verify.” This should complete your outgoing mail setup.
Once you’ve connected your accounts, you’ll be able to navigate between your professional and personal email addresses within Gmail. Just choose which “From” address you want to use while composing your email.
Keep in mind that it sometimes takes a few minutes for Gmail to fully connect your custom email address. After following the setup instructions, wait five minutes and then send a message to your new email address. You should see it appear in your Gmail account and have the ability to respond using your new address.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Where can I get more help setting up my custom email address?
The best source for help setting up your custom email address is through the provider where you purchased your domain name. For example, if you registered your domain through Bluehost, contact its customer service team for additional troubleshooting help via phone or live chat. If you’d rather have someone set up your custom email address on your behalf, you can find technical support freelancers on Fiverr for as little as $5.
How do you set up a professional email signature?
If you’re using Gmail, set up your email signature by clicking the gear icon in the upper right-hand corner. Then select “Settings” and scroll down to find the “Signature” box, where you can input your signature.
Alternatively, you can design a professional email signature using a signature generator like WiseStamp. WiseStamp lets you create a customized professional email signature that includes images, links, icons, and more―with no coding knowledge. Learn more about the best email signature generators.
What are the best email marketing platforms?
The best email marketing platforms are affordable, feature-rich, and highly rated. These include providers like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, Drip, ConvertKit, ActiveCampaign, and HubSpot. Which is the best platform for you will depend on your unique needs, such as the number of contacts you have, email frequency, design skills, and budget. For more insights, check out our ultimate guide on email marketing.
A custom email address that uses your business’ domain name is vital for maintaining a professional appearance for you and your team. As complicated as it may sound to create a custom email address, there are a number of easy ways to set it up, such as with the leading email provider, Google Workspace. They make it incredibly simple to set up your business email and it comes with the productivity and collaboration tools your business needs.