Email remains an essential component for all businesses. It’s a major hub for both internal and external communication; plus, it acts as a storage space for files. That’s why it’s important to choose a professional and reliable email service provider for your business, so you can ensure productivity, unhampered collaboration, and the secure exchange of data. Among multiple email service providers designed for businesses, five provide the best service: Gmail, Outlook, ProtonMail, Zoho, and Yahoo! Mail.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Business Email
When choosing an email service provider, it’s easy to default to the brand you know. But while that ticks off the box for familiarity, it might not provide the necessary tools to scale your business. Here are some factors to consider when choosing an email account for your business:
Having a custom domain (e.g. email@example.com, instead of firstname.lastname@example.org) can differentiate your company from all other regular email senders; it tells receivers of your email exactly who is sending it and gives the impression of professionalism.
A lot of private information is exchanged via email, as well as business accounts such as PayPal, so security is a top priority. You—and the people you’re communicating with—should be sure that whatever you’re sending doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. Additionally, a good email service provider should protect your emails from harboring any viruses that can endanger your and your recipients’ hardware. Learn more about hiring an ethical hacker for security.
Email accounts double the storage available for files and documents that you send and receive. There should be enough space to hold these, plus all of the messages exchanged on the platform. The latter is especially important if you’re using email as a marketing tool. There should also be enough space—and an option for—backup, to protect your emails in case the platform fails.
We often use email to send attachments. But not all email service providers can cater to large-sized files—which can be a disadvantage if you need to send and receive big documents, video files, and the like.
An email sent into a spam folder is dead in the water. If it’s a personal message, it can cause miscommunication; if it’s a marketing email, it’s a lost opportunity. So you’ll want an email service provider that prevents the mistagging of your emails.
Best Email Service Providers for Businesses
Gmail, Outlook, ProtonMail, Zoho, and Yahoo! Mail are some of the best email service providers, especially for small and medium businesses. Here’s a breakdown of the tools they offer to help your business:
Even the basic Gmail is already impressive, with its focused interface, interactive email, calendar syncing, spam and phishing blocking, and offline access (with Google Chrome). Upgrade to Google Workspace, and you get custom domains, 30GB of storage, 24/7 support, and integration with other Google apps, on top of excellent uptime.
Outlook has a clean and simple interface that allows for distraction-free use, plus several customization options, from attachment rules and message handling. You can also integrate it with other business-adjacent apps like Skype and PayPal.
Get Outlook on a Microsoft 365 plan, and you’re equipped with lots of helpful tools like offline working, file recovery, an ad-free inbox, and 50GB of storage—on top of the latest version of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
ProtonMail is a leader in email security, offering clients end-to-end encryption and address verification, on top of an ad-free interface. Its basic version lacks power but upgrading to a Plus or Professional account gives you custom domains, 5GB of storage, and unlimited emails a day once you’re on the highest tier plan.
A lot of Zoho’s basic features are typically only offered in commercial plans, e.g. custom domains, an online suite, and a capacity of up to 5 users. So it’s a money-saver for small businesses. Even then, their Premium tier is only $4 per user per month, with email backups, 1GB attachment capacity, and smart calendars.
Yahoo! Mail may have lost popularity after Gmail but its re-polished email service is still packed with a lot of features like a whopping 1 TB storage, custom folders, keyboard shortcuts, SMS messaging, and disposable email addresses.
What’s the Best Email for Business?
Apart from the features of an email service, it’s also important to consider what your company needs from your business email accounts, whether it be internal communication, client emailing, setting up business accounts or email marketing. Each email service has its share of pros and cons, so you have to choose the one that works best for you.