How do I use gmail for a business account?
March 9, 2011 7:41 AM   Subscribe

How do I set a gmail email account using a business domain and not the gmail domain?

I know this can be done but how? My DH hates email but he is using it to access his business email account. How do I get him to use a gmail email account but keep his biz email doman/name?
posted by stormpooper to Computers & Internet (13 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Google apps for business.
posted by pharm at 7:42 AM on March 9, 2011

There's a basic version that's free.
posted by Galen at 7:48 AM on March 9, 2011

I would set up a forward in the business email to gmail. All mail gets forwarded to gmail address of your choice, and gmail has the ability to reply from the business email address. Took at 10 minutes to set up, has been working flawlessly.
posted by cosmicbandito at 7:56 AM on March 9, 2011

If you do set up Gmail to use the business email address as the "from" address, you should also try to see if you can route those replies through the business email's mail server. Otherwise, I believe it's still the case that in some email clients (see previous), it will show that the email has been sent by " On Behalf of," which is a bit awkward and kind of defeats the purpose of going to the trouble to make "" the "from" address. Hope that helps!
posted by limeonaire at 8:05 AM on March 9, 2011

Yes, be sure to do what limeonaire suggested! I hate that "On Behalf of" stuff, luckily most webhosts I've dealt with offer smtp services.
posted by yeahyeahyeahwhoo at 8:25 AM on March 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

Dammit, I wrote 3 paragraphs on the issues with cosmicbandito's suggestion and limeonaire beat me to it :) Needless to say, "on behalf of" looks messy and unprofessional.

Set up a Google Apps (free) account and in Settings > Accounts use the "Get mail from other accounts" option to pull in the emails from the existing account. He can start to send emails from the Google Apps account as soon as it is set up and will also receive emails to it - albeit with a slight delay as the email will first arrive at the old account and then Gmail will get it slightly later.

You can then change the domain records and, when this is complete, his emails will arrive instantly because it will now be going directly to Google and not via the old email host. At that point you can remove the POP3 polling.

During this entire time, no-one will be any the wiser that he's moved email addresses.
posted by mr_silver at 8:32 AM on March 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: We are trying to eliminate the email. Will this be possible?
posted by stormpooper at 8:42 AM on March 9, 2011

Yes. Did you read the links I and others posted above? You can shift all the email handling to Google & use gmail for everything whilst making all the email continue to look like it comes from and to "".
posted by pharm at 8:49 AM on March 9, 2011

stormpooper (and oh how I love that name), in the case of using Google Apps for this domain, Google becomes your hosting provider for this e-mail rather than
posted by mmascolino at 8:50 AM on March 9, 2011

Yes. To allow Google Apps to receive email for your domain, you will need to change settings withing for your domain (see here, for instance).

I would just go sign up for Google Apps (sign up for the free version - it is doubtful you need the paid one) - it will walk you through the steps to switching over in a pretty straightforward way. Obviously, you can come back here and ask for help if you encounter problems. And you don't need to "commit" when you sign up, only when you actually go in and change your MX records at to redirect the email to gmail's servers.
posted by misterbrandt at 8:53 AM on March 9, 2011

My personal experience with google apps has been very positive. I ended up switching over to it after realizing I was spending $80 a year at 1and1 for webhosting I never used, but email that I did. At that point, I had switched my domains over to godaddy and setting up google apps was simple.

The link misterbrandt posted is the most complicated step of the process, which really isn't hard overall. I've used google apps for over a year without issue now.
posted by graxe at 11:10 AM on March 9, 2011

There are two possible routes to send email from your domain through Google:

via your host (as posted by limeonaire)
Gmail > your domains mail server ( > recipient

or by changing your domains 'custom DNS settings' so that gmail acts as the mail server (as posted by misterbrandt):
Gmail > recipient

One other thing to consider is that don't have a very great reputation, so you might want to consider moving your domain over to a better/cheaper registrar before doing this.
posted by Lanark at 1:36 PM on March 9, 2011

The 'On Behalf of' thing drives me batty, but I had not realized there was such a quick solution to it. Thanks to those of you providing ways to avoid that!
posted by polymath at 2:14 PM on March 9, 2011

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